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Stone Spiral

Member Since 06 Mar 2016
Offline Last Active Yesterday, 10:54 PM

#127078 Pottery Back To A Sideline

Posted by Stone Spiral on 22 May 2017 - 02:40 PM

Have you considered running some classes to recoup some costs/earn some dollars?

Holding a 90 minute clay class on Saturday afternoons covers my studio rent & utilities for the month (plus some). Every time I add a new class time, it fills up within 2-3 weeks. If I need more money, I add a class to the schedule. If I am financially comfy and want more time for my own work, I phase out a class. It's working well for me.

You would be surprised how many people are thrilled to pay for studio time, and it really helps balance things. It's more fun to create when money isn't a worry..
I am booking two months off of classes for my own personal production, this July & August. That way, I get to focus on my own growth, creativity, and production for a while. In the meantime I've earned enough from classes over the past few months that the studio will be paid for throughout the summer.

Sorry you are feeling frustrated. I hope you find a way to feel excited and inspired again.

#127026 Qotw: What Do You Listen To While Working In The Studio? Music, Tv, Talk Radi...

Posted by Stone Spiral on 21 May 2017 - 06:23 PM

I listen to music, mostly Nahko & Medicine for the People (positive, uplifting lyrics) or ambient or folk.

I also do enjoy audiobooks
I have a busy life and do a lot of talking and am often around a lot of people, so occasionally, I actually really revel in the silence. (Like glaze nerd, the "silence" has a lot of beautiful sounds to it - my studio is beside a rushing river with birds chirping and animals wandering by. Yesterday, a hummingbird joined me in the studio for a little while :) )

#126638 Qotw: The Psychological Ups And Downs With Clay

Posted by Stone Spiral on 13 May 2017 - 02:46 AM

For me, it is that I live in an area that is quite saturated with potters. There is a really good art school nearby that pumps out professional potters.

I took ceramics in college 8-10 years ago - and didn't keep up with it because of life. I am just now re-teaching myself a lot of what I learned back then about kilns/firing, glazes, etc. Being surrounded by gallery-artist potter types makes me feel a little bit intimidated. I have my own community studio, I am a handbuilder... I run children's clay classes... it is for the love of pottery, and the sharing of creative space - not for the galleries or glory. But sometimes I do wish I could be a part of the galleries and glory! (and sometimes this gets in the way of my desire to create... that I'm not a high-caliber pot-throwing machine)

#124602 Wheel Quit Working

Posted by Stone Spiral on 31 March 2017 - 03:41 PM

I have a couple of wheels in my studio, all different makes and models so they each have their own way of being maintained/repaired.

My Kemper Clay Devil, the one I use for kid's classes, has decided to quit on me!

I have tried plugging in to different outlets, so I know it's not the power. (Also plugged other things into the same outlet and it works)


The wheel was working fine, and then I did a wet mop of the floor. The pedal got wet, but really... not that much? It's not like it was flooded, and no more than usual when I mop?


Anyways, I am going to take it apart today and see if maybe something got bumped or dislodged or... somehow jumps out as obvious to my non-mechanical brain.

If anyone has any tips or ideas on how to troubleshoot this issue, I would be grateful!

~ R

#104351 Qotw: Are "kiln Gods" Superstition?

Posted by Stone Spiral on 28 March 2016 - 03:45 PM

Ooooh yes!
I did make a goddess statue for my studio, a bearer of creativity. After reading this, I shall make her a consort for the kiln room; a protector of the pieces.
I love this!!


(but I'm totally into that kind of thing)

#104281 Making Pottery Or Metalsmithing

Posted by Stone Spiral on 26 March 2016 - 09:14 PM

I understand having more than one love, and having one that makes more money. Also, I too am a teacher... neat : )

Anyways, for me, I started a beeswax candle-making company about three years ago and it has gone really well, but it has always been my vision/dream to have a pottery studio. So, here I am, bouncing between my pottery studio, my candle studio (and the two never shall combine, as clay dust and warm wax don't mix!)... and on top of it all, am a full time teacher at a wonderful little schoolhouse in the mountains. It's a very busy life!

Anyways... my advice is to do both. Do a little of the hot sellers/moneymakers, a little of the stuff you love, and find a happy balance, if possible. Find a way to combine the two if possible. One of the big things I think will work for me is making ceramic candle holders to showcase our hand crafted beeswax candles. I get into craft fairs based on being a candlemaker (the market is saturated with potters here)... but then I get to put my ceramic wares out on the table as accents and compliments.

I hope to continue both. I see myself doing lots of pottery in Spring and Summer, and lots of candle making in Fall and Winter. I do love teaching and love my students/school, so I feel like a very fortunate soul to be immersed in so many of my passions at once.

#104023 I'm New!

Posted by Stone Spiral on 23 March 2016 - 01:29 AM

And to the original poster: As a new potter myself, I feel like there is so much value in enjoying the process. Approach it with an attitude of play and inspiration, and see what happens. Laugh when a pot flies off the wheel; squish a piece you don't like with gusto. Relish in the process.... it can be so incredibly satisfying and fulfilling in it's own way to come out of a 3 hour studio session with nothing to show.