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Member Since 29 Jul 2010
Online Last Active Today, 08:26 AM

#110580 Qotw: Are Our Expectations Too High?

Posted by oldlady on Yesterday, 09:56 AM

maybe because the finished item that inspired the question of how to make it is so spectacular.  the total newbie does not know that the technique it took to make that item is truly difficult even for an experienced potter.  and so the innocent loaded question that really cannot be answered.


we see the olympic ice skater execute perfect moves and that makes a child want to be a skater.  that child wants to do that fabulous spin but does not know the work it took to get there.  same principle.

#110553 Found New Textured Paper!

Posted by oldlady on 25 July 2016 - 11:27 PM

well, started something here, i think.  the particular paper i show in the photos is a single sheet, 22x30. it is handmade in Thailand and it came from Rochester Art supply in NY state.  $8 shipping almost the same.


the others i ordered came today and i am disappointed in one of them.  it is a pretty pattern but the embossing is only about as deep as a business card so it will be very faint.  this is also an art paper.  the second one is also handmade in Thailand but the pattern is very large.  might be able to use it.  both aprox 22x30.


roberta, fixative is a spray that prevents the chalky pastels that artists use from dusting off the paper.  it is not as strong as covering the whole thing back and front with shellac.  that is such a great idea because the Thai paper is very soft, like Kleenex or whatever is similar in OZ, babs.  have rolled the same area several times now and noticed the paper is getting a little ragged there.  will avoid it and shellac it asap.


i have used wallpaper and have several pieces that came from sample books that the store said was outdated.  you might be able to find it in paint stores that sell wallpaper.  look for Anaglypta which is heavily embossed and the patterns are usually very large.  otherwise look for Paintable wallpaper which is also heavily embossed and is used to cover concrete block walls that can then be painted.  a neighbor made her awful block wall look great after using it and painting the entire room.


the problem is that wallpaper is now out of fashion and you can hardly find any, let alone embossed stuff.  there is some beautiful stuff from germany but the designers seem to have grandiose ideas and the patterns do not lend themselves to clay work.  the books marked Textured are really not very useful.  it usually just has raised threads but that is not substantial enough for me.


hope you find something wonderful.

#110518 Found New Textured Paper!

Posted by oldlady on 25 July 2016 - 10:33 AM

thanks, roberta.  i did not know about shellac, and do not have any.  will get some because another 2 sheets are on their way and i hope to use them also.


got a new can of fixative to spray this paper.  the old one came from the 1990s and it just ran out.  the new one was hard to use, holding the button down was not easy for such a large paper but it is done.  and i can roll it through the slab roller.  learned this from a fabulous potter whose work was on the cover of one of the ceramics monthly editions, Ellen Currans from Oregon.  she made actual DISHES!  and the cover photo showed them inside a DISH DRAINER!   HERESY!  never on the cover of such a sophisticated  ART magazine!!  it showed actually USING something instead of keeping it on display and was a shock!!!!  their readers are ARTISTS!


the shape was folded over a glass vase. the smaller pieces folded around a wooden form that my local fine woodworking shop made for me.  i will do some tall ones around the wooden form also.   

#110513 Found New Textured Paper!

Posted by oldlady on 25 July 2016 - 09:02 AM

can't seem to just post these in the gallery.  so i am putting them here hoping someone will remind me how to get them into the gallery.


the paper is wonderful.  the pattern is bigger than i expected but i love it.  after covering the sheet of paper with fixative, i rolled these slabs out and made some prototypes yesterday.  clay is still soft and malleable so i can put tops on the square vases and maybe a lid on the sugar bowl.  that will sit with the creamer on an oval tray.

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#110417 Not So Messy Clay For Beginners?

Posted by oldlady on 21 July 2016 - 03:14 PM

mea has hit the nail on the head.  some potters just work cleaner than others.  but that did not happen overnight.


there is one other thing that might help.  some clays are dark or brownish and just appear to be messier than others.  and sometimes the plant mixing the clay adds too much water and the clay is sticky no matter what you do with it.


if that is the case, you can tell by cutting off a nice, clean piece with a clean wire.  then pick it up.  if it sticks to your fingers and slides all over the place, the clay is at fault.  this is a very infrequent thing but it does happen.  if that is it, return the clay if you can and get a new box, bag, or whatever.  just do not select one with the same manufacturing date.

#110401 Glazing Issues

Posted by oldlady on 21 July 2016 - 09:18 AM

with all that attention to a flawed product before it is finished, i would have tossed the mug and made a new one.

#110367 Karen Karnes, 1925-2016

Posted by oldlady on 20 July 2016 - 10:36 AM

though i never met this fine person, i was dumbstruck when i encountered a PILE of her work in a department store in virginia.  they were incredible, i had never actually touched such alive pots.  i sat on the floor and picked up one after another, caressing the surfaces and feeling the weight of these big spherical pots. with lids that fit and finished off the pots beautifully.  perfect.


i am sure i was looked at strangely by people walking past as i sat surrounded by these pots, but i just pitied the people who only saw pottery, not poetry.

#110218 Decorating Fine Relief-Part 2

Posted by oldlady on 17 July 2016 - 04:32 PM

would love to have a mold made from my own drawing, is that possible?

#109808 Correct Camera Lens For Product Photos?

Posted by oldlady on 07 July 2016 - 10:25 AM

thanks, nerd.  i try not to use the flash but sometimes it goes on anyway.   will try closeup at 36.  i only take snapshots to share here, never anything serious.

#109807 Qotw: What Form Do You Use To Experiment On A New Aesthetic?

Posted by oldlady on 07 July 2016 - 10:21 AM

this is a question i wonder about.  i recently read something that suggests that making something without drawing it first and thinking about it and adjusting the drawing into a real plan makes the item only craft.  BUT   if you  think about it hard, draw it, refine it on paper and then finally actually make it, it is ART!  


 so, drawing it in my head and skipping all those intermediate steps is not part of ART!  no wonder i am only a potter and not a ceramic artist.  happy to be a potter.  would hate the responsibility of being a SERIOUS ARTIST!

#109777 Crawling Glazes

Posted by oldlady on 06 July 2016 - 04:57 PM

after trying the dampening bisque, try watching youtube, john britt flocculating and deflocculating glazes.  i just watched it again and slowed it down several places because he assumes a lot of knowledge i do not necessarily have at my fingertips.  pay attention to the two test tiles that are covered with a red looking glaze that is cracking off.

#109668 Ceramics Basics - Help!

Posted by oldlady on 01 July 2016 - 03:01 PM

go to your local library and pick up several books on clay basics.  these will be the thicker ones that have a glossary in the back.  they might be old, but the info is still the same.  you need to know the alphabet before you write your novel.  same with clay work.  i am not discouraging you, only encouraging you to get some basic information so you will not be confused.  cones are used to measure heat work.  temperature is only a tiny part.

#109635 Mocha Diffusion

Posted by oldlady on 30 June 2016 - 04:53 PM

you appear to be trying too hard.  could you just try using a greenware piece that you just finished making, put slip on it, touch a brush with your vinegar and color solution to a tiny spot and watch the tree grow.  put that pot down and make another one.  it is really that simple.

#109548 Qotw: Are We Potters Crazy?

Posted by oldlady on 28 June 2016 - 01:45 PM

yes, crazy.  i just came back from visiting the man with a machine shop in his garage.  he looked at the tools i showed him hoping he would be able to suggest a way to bring them back to life.  i kept trying to explain that what he sees today is not how the tool is supposed to look.  he didn't get it and tried sharpening one on his 8 inch grinder.  i told him thank you and returned home.  he just does not see what is not there.


potters see what can be and do not notice the mess necessary to make it.  spouses are believers in the unknown, aren't you all lucky they allow you to do it?

#109475 Birdhouse In Chinese Red

Posted by oldlady on 27 June 2016 - 09:48 AM

wrens like to fill up any cavities that might entice other birds to move in too close to the wrens.  and their babies return to the house for some time after they begin to fly.  yesterday, the mother scolded my dog for walking into her yard.  


thanks for the grape jelly idea!  that is a new one on me.  i have tried fruit but it just goes bad and nobody eats it.  i rarely see orioles.


i am going to try to post the picture that has the baby bird mouth showing in the opening.  tried before and just made two entries instead of one.

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