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Member Since 02 Apr 2011
Offline Last Active Today, 08:43 AM

#87710 Qotw: • What Is The Best Advice Anyone Has Ever Given You?

Posted by flowerdry on 24 June 2015 - 07:41 AM

"You can lie, cheat, and steal to get the pot you want"  and "Step away from that pot"...which is another version of "don't love it to death".


I have to disagree with saying that if you don't like it when you make it  it won't get any better.  When I don't like a pot coming out of the kiln because it doesn't meet my expectations(doesn't look like I wanted it to, I can sometimes wait awhile (months), then look at it again.  Once my expectations are gone,  I can see the pot for who it is, not for who I wanted it to be, and sometimes I find I like it after all!

#86780 Should I Start Pottery Or Not? Advice Please.....

Posted by flowerdry on 08 June 2015 - 07:29 PM

I was thinking along the same lines, John Baymore.  Gee, Brad, you're coming to a bunch of addicted people looking for encouragement.  Well, yeah, GO FOR IT.

Seriously, though, I am of the very firm belief that hobbies and interests CAN be kept to a manageable level if that's what you want to do.  You do not need to invest in a bunch of expensive equipment to make pottery.  In fact, it's better if you don't buy a bunch of stuff right away.  Take classes as you have time and money and give yourself plenty of time to decide which path you want to take.  It's not a quick trip, it's a long journey.

#86463 Selling Imperfect Pots?

Posted by flowerdry on 03 June 2015 - 11:51 AM

That really is a lovely glaze Ray, and yes, I would buy the mug and wouldn't expect it to be discounted as a second.  In fact, I would feel like it's a really special piece because the potter had to put extra time into completion.

#86461 Newb All Over Again...

Posted by flowerdry on 03 June 2015 - 11:48 AM

25 yr break here, and I, too, was pretty good back in the day.  I was only slightly better than your average beginner when I came back to it, a big disappointment at the time,  but it has been a really great journey to slowly get my skills back and go beyond where I was in college.

One thing that was helpful to me, was to realize that I was trying to throw with whatever clay was available.  It worked better if I used clay that was slightly on the soft side, not those hard lumps.  And, as others have said, don't concentrate on producing a product.  Right now, you just need to work on building those skills back up.  So you shouldn't be trying to save everything.

#81893 Searching The Forum

Posted by flowerdry on 18 May 2015 - 08:35 PM

Thank you Rebekah!  What you said was exactly what I was doing wrong!  Once I made sure I was on the forum home page to do a search, it works fine.  Yea!

#81195 What Discourages You And How Do You Get Over It?

Posted by flowerdry on 10 May 2015 - 08:12 AM

I tend to be a very upbeat person...especially now that I have retired!  I've enjoyed reading this thread.  /but I was having trouble thinking of something that really discourages me until I read Chris's comment about lack of craftmanship.  I see people making very sloppy work with little attention to detail, finishing, craftmanship, call it whatever.  Best example is turning over a pot and seeing a rough, ugly, uneven bottom.   Or thick throwing bumps in a bowl.  And people are buying this stuff.  Arrrggghhhh.  Makes me crazy.

#81076 Newbie Discouraged But Persistent---Help!

Posted by flowerdry on 08 May 2015 - 09:44 AM

Your description of the ceramics teacher at the school makes my gut clench.  I wish she would find some other way to earn a living.  I teach beginners wheel, and  feel strongly that everyone needs to find the techniques that work for them.  I show the way I do something and then show some alternatives and encourage students to try them and eventually find their way.  I also encourage everyone to take classes from as many different teachers as possible because everyone has strengths and weaknesses, and something different to offer.  I really started to grow as a potter when I moved away from the techniques that my one teacher of several years insisted were the right way and only way. I started watching utube and found other classes in different venues.


One route to learning that was helpful to me was to consiously tackle one aspect of throwing at a time, no matter what type of piece I was making.  For instance, I worked on "tall" for a while, then "narrow necked", then "shoulders", etc.  It was easier for me than trying to improve everything at once, although, the more you throw, the more every part of your process will improve.


Get your own wheel as soon as you can if you intend to continue.

#81065 Submit Your Community Challenge Ideas

Posted by flowerdry on 08 May 2015 - 07:38 AM

I would be interested in reading the artists' comments/thoughts/interpretations along with the picture of their entry.

#80223 What Do You Get Out Of This Forum Interaction?

Posted by flowerdry on 27 April 2015 - 07:07 PM

Coming a little late to this topic as I only  just noticed that the pc section is about more than just council business.  About the only thing I don't get out of the forum is ease of searching.  The search function for some reason has never been very helpful to me.


Everyone has pretty much said everything already...so of course I'm going to say more... : -)

COMMUNITY!!!  Non-judgemental.  Supportive.


Every once in a while someone new comes on the forum and asks a really broad, not very well thought out question.  I roll my eyes and think..."Go to the library!"   And then, invariably, within a short period of time, at least a couple of members answer with thoughtful, encouraging posts and I am humbled once again by the generousity of this group of people. 

#79438 Low Fire Pottery

Posted by flowerdry on 15 April 2015 - 08:07 PM

There was a tip on this forum, I believe, recently about achieving very exact lettering.  I tried it and thought it was very easy and gave beautiful lettering.  Brush some wax resist on the area you want to write on on leatherhard ware.  Then carve or incise the letters into the clay through the resist.  Then you brush underglaze on and it literally flows into the lettering.  I used a sponge only a little bit for minimal clean up.  Bisque fire, then use a translucent glaze so the lettering shows through.  I loved it.

#79435 Stream Of Consciousness Back Fires ....

Posted by flowerdry on 15 April 2015 - 07:40 PM

Plan F.  Whack it into pieces.  Carry the pieces downstairs.  Reassemble....with paper clay????

Plan G.  Whack it into pieces.  Carry the pieces downstairs.  Fire the pieces.  Glue it together and install in yard.  Enjoy.

#77939 I Have My Garden Of Shame

Posted by flowerdry on 24 March 2015 - 08:31 AM

Mark, I can't even think of my reject, unwanted pieces as "trash".  That's one of the perks of non-production work...not so much stuff to get rid of.  Yes, I have pots in the garden.  Half buried and tilted equals a toad home.   Surrounding tender newly planted stuff as protection against doggie paw squash.  Holding starter plants.  Have used the trash can, but not very much.

#77868 I'll Never Be A Real Potter.

Posted by flowerdry on 23 March 2015 - 08:53 AM

I have reached an important decision in my clay life that I want to share with my forum friends.  I love my journey in clay and want to always be moving forward, improving and learning.  I have always assumed that since I want to be a good potter I would eventually need to start mixing my own glazes, but have been putting off that step. I have been dreading all that glaze mixing entails and I know you all know what I mean by that.

Last week I realized that clay is something I do because I want to do it, not because I have to, and mixing glazes because I feel I have to will take too much of the joy away for me.  So I'm not going to do it.  Why should I, when OTHER PEOPLE have done it for me, and very well at that.  I am happy with the commercial glazes I use and am always trying out new ones and new combinations and techniques.  I teach a few beginners classes and sell a few pots at a gallery and that pays for my habit and makes me happy.


I feel as if a huge burden has been lifted off my shoulders.  I am at peace with never becoming a "real potter".

#76823 Living The Dream

Posted by flowerdry on 05 March 2015 - 10:14 AM

Part of my dream has been realized.  My home office has been dismantled and turned into the clay room.  This winter has been about clay...all clay.  I'm in a special heaven called retirement.

#76113 Finding Your Own Style...easy To Say

Posted by flowerdry on 24 February 2015 - 09:25 PM

" I used to like really precise and perfect pieces with clean designs and colours, because the potter who first taught me ceramics was doing that kind of things."


It took me many years to realize that what I thought were my own tastes were really just versions of what I was used to...from parents, friends, teachers.  Finding my  own personal voice has been a long but tremendously satisfying journey, in clay and others aspects of my life.