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buckeye

whats everyone been up to?

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I spent the last couple weeks spiffing up my work area. Used Christmas cash to buy some new shelves for the studio and some big glass jars to store glazes in. That was a great time to give the studio a good cleaning and start the year fresh. I was given a storied old home made kick wheel a few weeks ago, so that's been added to the studio - its nice to have a dedicated trimming station and a wheel for nieces and whatnot to play at. The glaze area got a new, double-tub sink and sprayer and now has hot *and* cold water (great, since its outdoors) and that means the driveway - er kiln yard - now has a sink for raku and other purposes. Woo hoo!

 

I got my first check from the gallery up the mountain, and right away bough a new Slab Mat and some pokey things. Oh! And my local clay supplier gave me 100 pounds of porcelain in exchange for replacing the keyboard on their laptop!

I'm getting ready to load the new downdraft kiln for its 4th firing. The first was OK, the second was way over-fired and not surprisingly the 3rd was very under-fired. Wonder what this load will bring.

The firing after this one is going to be all shino glazes I think.

 

So, yesterday was spent throwing dog bowls and tea bowls.

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I've also been doing some hand building for raku pieces - the local Ace Hardware gave me a piece of embossed wallpaper and I've been playing with that.

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Today, a little more throwing and then I have a whole lot of glazing to do!

 

 

Handbuilding piece is just awesome!

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This year started of rough and busy. I made a whole new series of molds on the wheel, fired the first set of nesting bowls and discovered that the clay slumped, removing the floating effect I wanted to create. so back to the plaster and wheel. I created some supports, and since then have been casting away. At the same time our studio got a lot of orders, and i got a potential order for 80 teapots. so back to the wheel and more plaster work. This will be the first multi-part mold tgat I will build myself 100%. Quite scary :-)

But today I am in bed - a nagging lower back pain got me waddling like a woman about to give birth. And this morning it took me over an hour to get out of bed. I am back in bed with some pain relief, , some soothing classical music and the PC for the rest of the day.

nesting bowls

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moldmaking setup - before clean up!

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Sorry to hear yer down in the back, diana. I'm one of those fortunate folks as well. Is there such a thing as a pain-free day? Not in my World. However, after 15 years of this fun, I probably wouldn't know what to do with myself if I wasn't in pain.

 

it sure lets ya know yer here...

 

Thanks for the suggeston on the handles, pres. I had virtually no experience when I started making these....so it was definitely trial and error. Some of the slab handles cracked in the interim between making them and trying to put em on...some cracked after being put on the pitcher a few days later. (about 1/2 the "Looped" type strap handles cracked) Once I stopped looping them I had better luck....though I will still make looped ones cus i like the looks of them. All-in-all it's been fun trying to figure it all out.

 

They >are< fairly large. I have big hands so they are perfect for me....but we will see if the ladies balk or fall in line. I tried a few rope-like handles/round handles but they just didn't look right to me and in the end, I like the way the slab-type handle looks much better.

 

Thanks again for the suggestion.

 

These are the last few I've made. Still playing with handles and also tossin on some adornments to see if they fall off later. LOL. The elctrician is coming today to scope the new 240 hookup and I'm gonna pulll the handle on a new L & L...so hopefully somebody will like what I'm doin or the garage is gonna get WAYYYY full WAYYY fast and I may have to switch my game and open a juice bar.... LOL.

 

somebody stop me.... heehhee

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Sorry to hear yer down in the back, diana. I'm one of those fortunate folks as well. Is there such a thing as a pain-free day? Not in my World. However, after 15 years of this fun, I probably wouldn't know what to do with myself if I wasn't in pain.

 

it sure lets ya know yer here...

 

Thanks for the suggeston on the handles, pres. I had virtually no experience when I started making these....so it was definitely trial and error. Some of the slab handles cracked in the interim between making them and trying to put em on...some cracked after being put on the pitcher a few days later. (about 1/2 the "Looped" type strap handles cracked) Once I stopped looping them I had better luck....though I will still make looped ones cus i like the looks of them. All-in-all it's been fun trying to figure it all out.

 

They >are< fairly large. I have big hands so they are perfect for me....but we will see if the ladies balk or fall in line. I tried a few rope-like handles/round handles but they just didn't look right to me and in the end, I like the way the slab-type handle looks much better.

 

Thanks again for the suggestion.

 

These are the last few I've made. Still playing with handles and also tossin on some adornments to see if they fall off later. LOL. The elctrician is coming today to scope the new 240 hookup and I'm gonna pulll the handle on a new L & L...so hopefully somebody will like what I'm doin or the garage is gonna get WAYYYY full WAYYY fast and I may have to switch my game and open a juice bar.... LOL.

 

somebody stop me.... heehhee

 

 

No problem with the aesthetic of the wider handles, just the technique. In this last bunch I am seeing more attention to the edges that can be uncomfortable. Some times when I did a wider slab handle I would shape the join at the top like a curve with the low side at bottom. This does two things-more comfortable, and the curve worked through the handle strengthens the handle.

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Mark C - Really sorry to hear that you will be down for 3-4 months and sad that your missing a show you have done for 20 years. I hope you have a quick recovery!

 

Idaho potter - No reason to be nervous! post away, this site and the people are great.. congratulations on the new website!

 

Diana Ferreira - WOW those bowls are awesome! really sorry to hear about your back, hope it is better now

 

Vivienne - Welcome to the forum, we are glad you found the forum as well

 

 

 

My update: Finally got my electric back up and everything fixed. My one friend who helped me he needed help the next weekend and dont know how I did it but my shoulder has been a mess, I havent been doing much throwing, hurts to much but throwing some smaller stuff, slowly. I have been doing a lot of firing though and its working out great. I am not making glazes yet but I did order dry glaze from Glazemixer, ordered two and they turned out great.. having a lot of fun.

 

I am really big into metal detecting and have been getting out a lot since the weather is nice here in Ohio, I am left handed and its my left shoulder that is messed up so I am swinging mostly right handed but still finding some good stuff, 1926 Mercury dime yesterday and last week I found an 1817 penny and some cool relics at very old home sites.

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Thank you Teardorp and Buckeye.

I slept most of the day, which was such a pity as it was a really beatiful day. But my back definately feels better. My brother, who also get the same aches and pains suggested that I should get a 'kidney' type of belt that I can wear when lifting heavy stuff. We are in the midst of another heatwave. I am ready to go back to the studio tomorrow, though.

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It won't be a big deal to a lot of folks here with 30K and up invested in their studio.....but work here continues on (borrowed term from someone else here) the "garagio" project...

 

Saturday I got tired of waiting on the electrician to call back and took matters into my own hands and ran a 240v- 60 amp cuircuit/sub panel/outlet from one side of the garagio to the other....where the kiln is gonna sit.

 

Gonna order the kiln today. Just waiting on some numbers. I have 5K en total to set this up....the kiln purchase obviously taking up a huge chunk of that number.

 

But I know all too well from the past year's events...you only live once. In the end.....the future is now.

 

Second large® purchase....a slab roller. Lookin at the comments here in the archives (Thanks, all) I think I'm gonna go with a Bailey.

 

From there it's glaze. I wanna mix my own eventually...at least a few colors....but for now I am going to pick/choose some commercial glazes and see what combos I can come up with. Maye I'll feel differently about it when I get into it..but the thought of making a bunch of test tiles and seeing the results has me salivating big-time.

 

Also trying to grab some quality tools....the post here on banding wheels has me NOT skimping.... and talk of particulates has me clicking on "Buy" for a respirator/filters/etc.... Some things i can do without....others..nope.

 

Gotta make a road trip for clay. just can't get behind those shipping charges! Wow.

 

As far as "work" (now known as Klunkery here)...... still tryin different shapes/forms/construction. (and always will) I have 25+ pitchers in greenware so it will be fun to see if i've made anything that will survive the bisque firing or will pour water without dripping all over once bisqued...LOL.

 

Live and learn! (especially in self-taught/youtube mode) Gotta love dat mud!

 

I'm thinking this shape could be for tea or coffee. Much like expermenting with handles...it looks like some lids may make their way into the picture as well in the future. My wife talked me into making this one. (you can see in the pic of both that there's no lid yet)

 

dunno where i'm goin' or if I'm doing it 'right"....but I'm sure havin' fun tryin' to figure it out. (and realize i will >never< truly figure it all out...thankfully)

 

coffee, anyone? (OK..let me glaze it first and see if it pours)

 

teadrop

 

 

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Negative reputation!!! NOT! That is terrible! I noticed I had a negative reputation, and have no idea how I got it. I just figure some people don't have enough positive things to do.

 

I appreciate you very much, Teardrop.

 

Marcia, are you teaching a workshop this weekend, or attending one? I wish you would teach a good workshop, I would certainly travel to Brownsville to attend.

 

This 'addiction' is perfectly healthy for me.

jd53 and teardrop like this

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Thanks janie.

 

I snagged a >very< lightly used Skutt 818 for a song this weekend. It isn't nearly as large of a kiln as I had planned on buying but the price and the excellent condition of the unit caused me to change plans on the spot. At least now I am up and running. (I am cooling bisque load #2 right now)

 

Ordered a Bailey DRDII slab roller....a selection of tools...and a whole slew of glazes as well. Isn't spending money fun? (and easy on a pottery supply website!)

 

Klunkery, here we come!

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Sorry to hear yer down in the back, diana. I'm one of those fortunate folks as well. Is there such a thing as a pain-free day? Not in my World. However, after 15 years of this fun, I probably wouldn't know what to do with myself if I wasn't in pain.

 

it sure lets ya know yer here...

 

Thanks for the suggeston on the handles, pres. I had virtually no experience when I started making these....so it was definitely trial and error. Some of the slab handles cracked in the interim between making them and trying to put em on...some cracked after being put on the pitcher a few days later. (about 1/2 the "Looped" type strap handles cracked) Once I stopped looping them I had better luck....though I will still make looped ones cus i like the looks of them. All-in-all it's been fun trying to figure it all out.

 

They >are< fairly large. I have big hands so they are perfect for me....but we will see if the ladies balk or fall in line. I tried a few rope-like handles/round handles but they just didn't look right to me and in the end, I like the way the slab-type handle looks much better.

 

Thanks again for the suggestion.

 

These are the last few I've made. Still playing with handles and also tossin on some adornments to see if they fall off later. LOL. The elctrician is coming today to scope the new 240 hookup and I'm gonna pulll the handle on a new L & L...so hopefully somebody will like what I'm doin or the garage is gonna get WAYYYY full WAYYY fast and I may have to switch my game and open a juice bar.... LOL.

 

somebody stop me.... heehhee

 

 

I like 'em.

 

Jim

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Teardrop, You were talking about making some wooden forms to stabalize you work while you form it. Another approach you might try, if you can sew, is make a pillow the same shape as the form you want to make. In your case a shape with square corners. ( a round shape is easier to make) Fill the pillow with , vermiculite and pack it in tight. Form the pitcher around it and when it gets leather hard and will self support you vacuume out the vermiculite and pull the bag out of the form. Then you can reuse the bag for the next one. reusing the vermiculite from out of the shop vac. I know that hands are covering mouths in gasps because vermiculit, I think has asbestos in it. Our potters lungs take all sort of abuse as it is so one more sharp dust particule in are lungs is not good. So you would need to use all sorts of safty precautions for your lungs sake. MIght not be worth it. This technique was shown to me a long time ago and I have never seen a up date on a better product to fill the bag with. Vermiculite is light and dosn't absorb water. They add it to soil some time to help roots breath. (Kinda ironic ain't it) If anyone else has used this techeque and has found a better product to fill the bag/pillow with please let us know. I just know that it works really slick and you can make a real tall shape rather easily. Happy firing Kabe

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Thanks for the idea, kabe. I made 3 wooden forms but have yet to give them a try. Once the new slab roller shows up...I'll see if the forms cut time from the build or add to it. :lol:

 

happy pottin'!

 

teardrop

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Since my last post, I've enrolled in another pottery class. It's an open studio and therefore isn't meant to be a instructional class. It gives me access to firing, the glazes, slips, etc. and a multitude of tools I haven't yet bought for myself. Luckily my instructor or because this is a non instructional class, my technician is more than willing to answer my endless questions and because I asked... is including me in such things as loading and firing the kiln. THAT has been so helpful....not that I have a kiln of my own to load (as yet!), but it appears to be less scary than I thought. I'm hoping I'll get a chance to help her with slip and glaze mixing, because that is something else that boggles my mind. All in all, I'm sure that this all gets easier to understand but right now my poor head is a mumble jumble of ideas. Not that that's anything new. I'm told I can be "impatient"! Hmmm...well, possibly, but only because I want to learn it all and learn it all now!

 

So...for now I'm all over the map! Trying new techniques, throwing in different ways, planning things that are really far too advanced for me the newbie potter...though I do like a challenge. I'm hoping I'll find that one thing or maybe two or three that sort of defines my pottery. I worry though that I'll always be like this, and that...should I ever set up a booth at a sale....my stuff will be a hodge podge!

 

Is this normal for someone just starting out? Any suggestions?

 

Oh yes!!! and I'm finding that I really love handbuilding. I seem to thrive on the "fussy" stuff. I've posted a pic of one of my "jarheads"! Unfortunately the pic is at the "just been underglazed greenware state, but once fired I plan to wash it all with a watered down black underglaze to "distress" the entire thing and bring out the incised lines, stamping, etc. Not sure if I'll glaze or wax or what yet. I'd appreciate any criticism or suggestions!

 

Many thanks, Brendapost-7889-133028528546_thumb.jpg

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Since my last post, I've enrolled in another pottery class. It's an open studio and therefore isn't meant to be a instructional class. It gives me access to firing, the glazes, slips, etc. and a multitude of tools I haven't yet bought for myself. Luckily my instructor or because this is a non instructional class, my technician is more than willing to answer my endless questions and because I asked... is including me in such things as loading and firing the kiln. THAT has been so helpful....not that I have a kiln of my own to load (as yet!), but it appears to be less scary than I thought. I'm hoping I'll get a chance to help her with slip and glaze mixing, because that is something else that boggles my mind. All in all, I'm sure that this all gets easier to understand but right now my poor head is a mumble jumble of ideas. Not that that's anything new. I'm told I can be "impatient"! Hmmm...well, possibly, but only because I want to learn it all and learn it all now!

 

So...for now I'm all over the map! Trying new techniques, throwing in different ways, planning things that are really far too advanced for me the newbie potter...though I do like a challenge. I'm hoping I'll find that one thing or maybe two or three that sort of defines my pottery. I worry though that I'll always be like this, and that...should I ever set up a booth at a sale....my stuff will be a hodge podge!

 

Is this normal for someone just starting out? Any suggestions?

 

Oh yes!!! and I'm finding that I really love handbuilding. I seem to thrive on the "fussy" stuff. I've posted a pic of one of my "jarheads"! Unfortunately the pic is at the "just been underglazed greenware state, but once fired I plan to wash it all with a watered down black underglaze to "distress" the entire thing and bring out the incised lines, stamping, etc. Not sure if I'll glaze or wax or what yet. I'd appreciate any criticism or suggestions!

 

Many thanks, Brendapost-7889-133028528546_thumb.jpg

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:)

 

Yer lucky to have that open studio Wolfie50! Take advantage when you can!

 

teardrop

 

 

Can't agree with Teardrop enough! Enjoy the open studio as much as you can! I love you're little jar head, he's cute as a button, and can't wait to see a picture of him all finished. His head is a little pointy for a true "Jarhead" *coughs* (A little joke regarding the USMC, from a USMC brat, and retired USAF wife here). As I said, I can't wait to see a picture of him all finished, he'd adorable.

 

I have my own little in home studio, and I rent space at a local place just so I can get the access you have. I have found I learn more when I'm at Coyote Clay studio, working, talking, and watching other potters than I ever did in my little place with reading and experimenting, etc. (Most of the staff is is pretty helpful also). I am however, thinking of taking some private lessons from one of the other potters there, just to get the kinks worked out on the one problem I just can't seem to get past.

 

Lately I've been trying out new glazes, well, new for me. Ash glazes. Oh my goodness, I love the look of them, but boy do they run! I just don't have the space here at home to mix my own glaze, so I do buy commercial. My first attempt at an ash glaze... well, lets just say even with allowing ~1/2" dry clay at the bottom of the vase, I still offered to replace the kiln shelf... I'm not even sure I can grind down the bottom enough to save it. If not for all of the glaze and bits of kiln shelf attached to the bottom of the piece, it would have been a beautiful vase. I'm excited with the way it came out, but so sad that it ran even more than I expected. I'm not ready to give up on using them yet, but am rather discouraged. Is there some type of trick to using an ash glaze so that it doesn't run quite so badly?

 

Today, I intend on going into the studio and just having some me time, much needed after battling a sinus infection. I'm not quite sure if I'm going to be glazing or throwing yet. But I do intend on learning something new!

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Ah....the "glaze on the shelf" gig! We were threatened in class we'd have to replace shelves if we ran glaze all over 'em. :blink: (fat chance)

 

Good thing we have our own kiln and shelves now. >snicker<

 

Definitely "trial by fire" here....but we are learning lots and lots by simply doing it and seeing what comes out of the kiln.

 

some kinda fun!

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Oh my, what a week! I sure could use some down time, and for me, that means studio time.

 

My week in a nutshell, a big one at that... Saturday, my husband woke me up with saying that he bought tickets to Portland OR so we could surprise our oldest daughter for her graduation from culinary school next month, and that he reserved rooms at an Inn in Seaside, OR, on the beach for the weekend. He then went out and surprised me by buying me a Giffin Grip, some new trimming tools (replacing the ones that were borrowed but not returned at the studio where I rent space) and a belt and disc sander combo (He said it was for cleaning up the bottom my pots when needed, but it's in his work shop. We all know who that is really for right?) We spent Sunday bowling, as it keeps my 89yr old Mom some what active, and the only thing she's interested in doing, and unfortunately, she had a bad day Monday (I'm her care giver btw) with not remembering what year or state we're living in. Tuesday, my husband ended up so sick that we spent the day in the ER as he started having chest pains. Everything turned out just fine, and it's just this mystery virus that's been going around in our neck of the woods. It gets better, as we're sitting in the ER, my son in law calls me, my daughter, who is 32 weeks pregnant, was upstairs in labor and delivery with contractions 3 min apart! Thankfully, they stopped the labor, and sent her home on bed rest until she can see her own midwife next week. Yesterday was spent cooking, and more cooking, and more cooking, as I fixed meals that are 'heat & eat' for the next week. I'm taking turns with keeping an eye on her and making sure my 3 yr old grand daughter lets Mommy get some rest.

 

Mom's having a good day so far, so I managed to sit down and really take a look at some of my recent projects/pieces. A range of emotions with this bunch, from heart break, to being pleased. I tried my hand at some ash glaze, (heart break) and as mentioned before, offered to pay for a new shelf, tried to recover a pot that went flying off the bat during trimming (reason for the Giffin grip), and decided to just play around with some underglazes (love the way the bottom turned out). I even tried my hand with some soda firing, and out of the three small items I did, I'm happy with only one. I was however surprised at how much it shrank and how heavy it became (the weight is most likely my fault). If I can figure out how to attach more than one picture to this, I will.

 

As I said, it's been quite a week, some good, very good, and very scary times, so since Mom is having a good day, I'm dropping her off at the Senior Center and heading off to the studio. Oh yes, one very saving grace that happened during a round a bad patch this week, Monday, I had a beautiful visitor sitting in the pine tree outside my home studio window. He was even nice enough to pose for pictures!

 

Have a wonderful day everyone, and keep on playing in the mud, it's such wonderful therapy!

 

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Thanks for sharing, jeri. Wow...you weren't kiddin about the ash glaze/shelf!

 

Below is some less-than-skilled noob "Klunkery" from our first kiln firing.

 

Therapy is right. The first 10 pitchers out of the >new to us< kiln will be given as gifts to our fellow Grievers in the Hospice sponsored Grief group we have been attending for the past 10 weeks. It's just noob junk by the standards on this site but I'll wager it will make folks smile just the same.

 

Some cracks here/there.....some spouts too thin....some glaze mishaps.... but still lots of fun and a great learning experience.

 

teardrop

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Guest alabamapotter

Well,

 

A couple of months ago, I contacted a local coffee shop in a small town and asked them if they needed anything made. They ordered some expresso cups (.75 lbs clay)

and salad bowls (1.5 lbs. clay) which I made, but the cups were the wrong shape. They wanted something like a small tea cup and I made them something like a 4 inch miniature stein..

Then they ordered some grit bowls, (1 pound clay) which should be ready in a couple of weeks. In a few more weeks, we'll discuss wholesale and/or consignments.

A couple of weeks ago, the yahoo I work with dug out a hole next to the automotive shop door, exposing a clay quarry. So I bagged some of the clay, wedged it and got most of

the nuts and bolts, rocks and safety glass out of it. So far it has done well and it ready to make an 18th century clay pipe and jar out of. Once its fired, I'll know

how good the clay actually is. Last week, contruction started next the the main highway and the back hoes digging a ditch, apparently scooped up some dirt with

clay properties, or actual clay... Tomorrow, I'll stop and see exactly what they have dug up and try to put some flag stones in my car that they probably don't plan to use.

Four months ago, my little brother ordered some Medieval steins (3 lbs. clay) for his SCA group, with their historic crest on the side. I've made 2 so far. I'll start on the next 8

soon. I'm also making a variety of kitchen ware for family and friends.

 

Anyway, thats all I've been up to... I'm so glad winter is over since my main residence is not heated, (just the weekend retreat is). Winters are tough on an old man.

See you all later. Keep potting!!!

 

Alabama Potter

 

 

 

 

<<<SO! I would love to hear what projects everyone is working on, what are you all up to in your studio?>>>

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Thanks for sharing, jeri. Wow...you weren't kiddin about the ash glaze/shelf!

 

Below is some less-than-skilled noob "Klunkery" from our first kiln firing.

 

Therapy is right. The first 10 pitchers out of the >new to us< kiln will be given as gifts to our fellow Grievers in the Hospice sponsored Grief group we have been attending for the past 10 weeks. It's just noob junk by the standards on this site but I'll wager it will make folks smile just the same.

 

Some cracks here/there.....some spouts too thin....some glaze mishaps.... but still lots of fun and a great learning experience.

 

teardrop

 

 

 

The pitchers are beautiful Teardrop! I think it's wonderful what you're doing with them and am sure they'll be greatly appreciated.

 

Jeri Lynne

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Thanks for sharing, jeri. Wow...you weren't kiddin about the ash glaze/shelf!

 

Below is some less-than-skilled noob "Klunkery" from our first kiln firing.

 

Therapy is right. The first 10 pitchers out of the >new to us< kiln will be given as gifts to our fellow Grievers in the Hospice sponsored Grief group we have been attending for the past 10 weeks. It's just noob junk by the standards on this site but I'll wager it will make folks smile just the same.

 

Some cracks here/there.....some spouts too thin....some glaze mishaps.... but still lots of fun and a great learning experience.

 

teardrop

 

 

I like these a lot. Very neat.

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Chalk one up for the noobs!

 

The folks running the local market liked my pitchers and I was accepted into the fold this week after submitting my photos. 115 vendors each week. We reserved 3 weekends over the Summer (2 of which bookend the 4th of July holiday when town is packed) and can add more weekends if there's space and we so desire to do so. I am sharing space on the 2 4th of July markets with a friend from AZ who is a woodworker/turner who will have bowls and hand-carved walking sticks for sale as well. Any/all of the other markets we partake in we will be solo.

 

The market itself has the tax gig figured out with the State so all we had to do was get a 2 year long Special Events license from the State (also arrived in the last few days) and we are off. I sold my market canopy years ago when I SWORE OFF doing markets ever again (LOL) but I have one lined up to borrow so we are golden there as well. Never say never, I suppose...

 

It will be interesting to see if there are other potter's there and what they may have to offer/how we are accepted/etc. (the stories I've heard are all over the board as to >how< other potter's will react to our wares/pricing/etc)

 

should be an eye-opener!

 

teardrop

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