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QotW: What is your most unapologetic, shamelessly proud, pat-yourself-on-the-back accomplishment of any type in Ceramics?

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Oh MY! Questions in the question bank, glad to know folks are getting tired of me presenting my questions!^_^ LeeU recently posed the following: What is your most unapologetic, shamelessly proud, pat-yourself-on-the-back accomplishment of any type in your ceramics life (a terrific piece, a  great sale, a sharp business strategy, a fine friend made, a good deed done, a land traveled, a discovery---etc. etc.)?  

Wow! that is a mouthful, but a thoughtful question. I can't say that there has been any one thing that stands out for me.  There have been times I have won awards at a local juried show, or even been shown in a State wide juried show. There have also been the times when I had thrown very large forms, even for most of the other students around me at PSU. Then there was being elected chapter president for the Blair County Guild of Craftsmen, or more recently elected to the board of the Potters Council by members. All of these, are of note, but in the long run do not last very long.

One of my most recent pats on the back came in the form of a letter from the church next door.  Last year one of the church members, an older woman, requested that I make a pair of chalices and a long french loaf paten for the church in memory of her daughter that had passed recently. I told her I would be happy to do it, but that it would take me probably a year as I was in the middle of orders and would be into Winter when I could not get things done. She accepted that, and had been patient. Order delivered not too long ago, she was very pleased. The church letter came a week later stating that the Communion set had been used blessed and used for the congregation communion. The letter stated that they were so blessed to have such a great talent in their midst! If they only knew how so little of it was talent, but more trial and error, and making the paten 3 times! But I still pat myself on the back. . . softly!

 

best,

Pres

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This is difficult to say, I was inspired to get back into clay while sitting in the library in the basement of an art museum, surrounded by books in Japanese and Chinese pottery. I’ve always had an interest in digging my own clay and networked with other potters doing the same. I’m proud of formulating clay body and glaze from scratch, and often in unguided territory with raw harvested materials. Working with Leach’s Old Yellow was amazing and I’ll have to say working with AG-19 glaze, Pleydell-Bouverie and Rhodes glazes kind of define what I like about clay

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That's a very tough question.  It's a great question, just tough to answer.  

I would say the thing, I am currently most proud of, is having myself and my Art Club make mugs for all the Staff, in our Building.  It ended up being about 90 mugs.  I did most the heavy lifting, in regards to throwing, as I wanted them to be consistent, but the kids added handles and a raised mascot head, that we press molded.  They also glazed everything.  

The Staff seemed very appreciative, especially the Associated, Kitchen Staff, and Custodians, who don't get a lot of credit and recognition.  The Head Custodian, came up and gave me a hug!

We are still making them for new Staff as well, as a Welcome.  The goal was only to do a few here and there, but we've had quite a bit of turnover, for various reasons, so we've been busy...

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For me it may be building two salt kiln conversions at a Molkai Art center on two different trips. Pro Bono as well. I am in the giving back space of life and passing on knowledge is part of that process. It felt right and was for a good cause . It still feels great years later

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I think for me it is designing and testing  C 1   Majolica  glaze and clay body for two years that would hold up to nasty icy winter weather.  I wanted to keep the rich and brilliant color that is lost with higher firings.   I am working on another project that is just as difficult and lots of testing,  I am not there yet but I am confident  I will get the results I want.  Denice

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My answer may be a little different, because it concerns someone else’s ceramics... but I was his HS teacher.  Many years ago, I had an extremely gifted student who was enrolled in each of my art classes throughout  his 4 years of high school.  I needed to be a Jack of All Trades, as the only art teacher in a rural high school... taught First Year Studio, Drawing and Painting, Printmaking, Photography, Sculpture and of course, Ceramics. His 3rd year, after Studio, and Drawing and Painting, he enrolled in Ceramics.  However, he always seemed to gravitate right back to his easel... he really was getting better and better at painting, BUT he was ignoring his Ceramics.  I knew he had a bright future, and was trying to help him get a scholarship to college... BUT did not want to mess up his chances with a low grade in Ceramics... so we made a bargain.  I would sustain his 4.0, but he had to put in double time after school or whenever, to get his Ceramics done.  Well, he did it. Then went on to win  a scholarship to the Boston Museum School (affiliate Tufts U, at Boston Museum of Fine Arts.). His first year in Boston, he excelled in Ceramics and became a fantastic, prolific, creative  potter. (but still painted :-) That young man went on to work at the Guggenheim, then the Smithsonian.  Now in his forties, he just completed a book, and has created an exhibit comparing Matisse’ inspiration to the work of native Alaskan indigenous peoples.  He has made me proud. :-)

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