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Mark C.

Member Since 09 Jan 2012
Offline Last Active Today, 02:28 PM

Topics I've Started

Glaze Material Storage Area

10 October 2015 - 10:52 AM

I moved out my old Alpine vertical pug mill yesterday-it weighed over 700#s-I'm giving it to a friend fro stoneware work

I dissembled it and man was that thung a bear-mostly cast iron parts-the motor and gear box alone was over 150#.

With the new space I moved all my overstock glaze materials (over 2,000#) and am rebuilding new storage.

I have my annual clay material order in right now so the clock is ticking on when more stuff will show up. My order was 23,500#s out of that 10 tons is clay so I need space for bags soon.

I'll take some photos when its done

Now it concrete mixing time for foundation supports-I plan on using 2x10s and 3/4 plywood for shelves to handle the wieght.This job is a back breaker.I need to get it done while I can still move this sort of thing.


So Want To Do Art Shows-Heres How-Start Driving

09 October 2015 - 01:17 AM

Attached File  IMG_0350.jpg   139.19KB   3 downloadsAttached File  IMG_0361.jpg   183.79KB   2 downloadsAttached File  IMG_0363.jpg   189.7KB   2 downloadsDrive 1000 miles to show-this one was 13 hours to barstow-hotel and then leave very early for 3 hour drive Friday 9 am set up in park under the trees.So thats 16 hours driving one way

You want to keep costs down so I share a room with another potter who lives in Santa Barbara area-we share hotels when doing same shows to lower costs.At this show we both do the whole show solo with now help. I do a few of these shows like this-as long as they are easy setups and under 10 k in sales I can handle it all. The key is easy set and take down.

So you have the day to get set up in your 10x15 space for $450. I no longer use a canopy at this venue as its under heavy threes and wind can blow 40 mph here in  the desert .I have seen canopies go flying here as well as tumbleweeding folks booths. They do not allow stakes so its buckets sand I.

Since its in a small town park next to the police station I just walk away at night from whole set up booth-no tarps no strings just leave-I have done it for a decade now with no issues.

On the way to show you get some real road miles like this one called Nippon cutoff. I like to turn the key off and get out and listen to the silence of the desert.This was taken about 7 am last Friday with my pottery van.


The booth is almost set up sales table  needs a few touch ups but show will start by 8 am the next day so I have time to clean it up-this photo was day before show.

I use a cash register and a small table with a wood cover over the register. My paper roll as you can see is vertical and spins-its all aluminum. The bag box is under table along with battery and inverter to make 110 volts for the register.Its all tight and out of the way-the table has a drawer for loose ends

I get there by 7am and sales start by 8-830. Ends at 5 and out to dinner by 6. next day same deal-casual show in the park. Been doing this one a very long time and my booth is always in this same spot or I will not drive the 2000 miles for some new spot.You must have your priorities . The show proceeds go to the local hostpital auxiliary - so the cause is ok.


Sunday show ends at 5 and I drive 3 hours to Barstow share a room with Jim and leave at 6 am for a 13 hours drive home.

This show had 312 customers who averaged 28$ a sale-not my best sale there but ok.

It takes about two days to feel normal from a trip like this--I was throwing xmas pots early tues am-back in the saddle they say

So you want to do show- stockpile a bunch of work and get into a good show and hit the rood.

Enjoy the drive 

after show like this you feel like a king with a large bag of dough until you get home and your wife says take out the cat box and clean it.

reality hits hard when your kingdom crashes


Good Rubber Stamps

28 September 2015 - 10:05 AM

Its always a good idea to have a few rubber stamps to mark your outgoing mail

One is my logo the other is a potter throwing. On outgoing bills I use my circling shark fin stamp.



42Nd Annual Art Show This Weekend-North Country Fair- Arcata-Photos Added

18 September 2015 - 04:36 PM

Well if you want to feel like you are older than clay do an art show consecutively for 42 years. This is our annual big event in our small town (15K). It's more than an art show really its an event for all-Samba Parade all species day parade-kinetic sculptures-music-food. Folks come from all over to this event, as it’s a long-standing bunch of fun. This show is one of the best energy wise (public fun) I do.

You can see past events here.



It’s my 42nd year as I started doing this in collage the 1st year it happened.

Now I’m a board member as one of the same old people a non-profit group who does the show and an artist at show.

I'll try to take a few photos this year.




Production Tips For Production Potters

18 September 2015 - 03:25 PM

I know there a few production folks out there on this board-feel free to share your ideas to save time.

I threw a few bowls this am for a gallery order as I have a big show this weekend and wanted to be dry soon and I thought about some production ideas.

Mine start with the clay in boxes-I tend to think about 25# pugs.

That is how I think about it-12 -2# forms from a pug or 16-1/12#s etc. Just by the way you cut it.

That is- weigh all the clay to start with then over time you know what that weight is buy cutting it from pugs and you no longer have to weigh it.This alone will save you time.

Having a good scale will help you

For example a pug cut top to bottom in quarters then sliced longwise is approx. two-pound balls. The extra 1# of the 25#s is spread out thru 12 pieces.

The other tip is cut your end off a cutting wire (yes cut the handle off one end on a new wire) –that way you can cut to the bottom of the pug and then pull out the wire without wasting time lifting it. Having a one-ended wire as well as a two ended wire will be or great use once you master this skill. Seems like a small point-try it-it makes cutting a pug into 48 pieces for spoon rests very quick or 12- 2# balls or 4 -6# pieces or whatever.

Once you master this wire and the cutting you know longer have to think about it.

Next is use ware boards next to your wheel-that way you are handling more ware at every time you get up. After the pots get off the ware boards use bats or boards that hold a lot of pots so you are moving them in mass-this all saves time. When you are moving one pot around you are not efficient.

I use plaster to throw small stuff on but whatever you use have plenty of them, as you do not want this to limit you


I use the sun (during the sun season) to speed drying and after trimming them. I can dry pots outside until Halloween and then again in April when sun gets hot enough mid day to do some good. I have racks under cover next to car kiln as well to dry pots. Late fall and mid winter its heater time in studio for drying. Today I threw this bowl order and trimmed it and they are now drying all in same day.

Add your production tips for others to learn from.