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Pres

Member Since 02 Apr 2010
Offline Last Active Today, 12:43 PM
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#56371 Expectation And Appearance

Posted by Pres on 09 April 2014 - 10:36 AM

Years ago, I was told things went in cycles like a pendulum swinging back and forth. The laid back, open society of the 60's gave rein to more and more conservative moves until we have a conservative uptight, often bigoted society. It seems to be suspended in the swing back, but as in all things, it will happen.




#56286 Expectation And Appearance

Posted by Pres on 08 April 2014 - 08:24 AM

Reminds me of a day at Penn State that is a well kept secret. Stephenson a professor at grad classes was called away for a meeting. He had started a lesson exploring the virtues of visualizing everyday objects made out of clay. He had two barrels of really smooth slip, and a pile of various objects for us to dip in clay. We started by dipping objects, and evaluating their look as a group under his supervision. Then he was called to an admin meeting, and eventually things progressed/regressed to 6-8 people running around campus covered head to toe in slip. There were pictures of slip dipped students sitting around a table in one of the gas kilns, in the old iron bathtub for slop, on the potters wheel with someone throwing them. The craziest is when a family of 4 were leaving the creamery ice cream cones in hand, one dropped when a pair of slip dipped streakers went running by.   Oh the 70's were the days! What happened to us?




#56178 I Need A Tutorial On Applying Iron Oxide To Bisqueware

Posted by Pres on 06 April 2014 - 09:14 PM

I often just use a damp sponge as others have said. However, if I intend to have greater contrast, I will hit some of the higher areas with sandpaper.




#55905 Wheels: Shimpo Vl-Lite Or Bailey St

Posted by Pres on 01 April 2014 - 02:11 PM

OK, so I'll ask a silly question. Have you checked out the In the Studio FAQ under the strand for buying a wheel?




#55887 How Do You Develop Your Work?

Posted by Pres on 01 April 2014 - 09:06 AM

I operate on a sketch book mentality, drawing forms and refining them until I like what I see. Some times these are derivatives of classical forms either Greek, Roman, or Asian in origin. Sometimes a form will sit in a sketchbook for months or years before I figure out how to make the piece/pieces. These are all involving just the form, not the decoration or surface.

 

As to surface, it goes back to watercolor or working with stencils and spray paint, building up layers. I can't draw these in a sketchbook. I know what I am looking for, just haven't been able to get it onto a ceramic surface and maybe never will. Sometimes I feel I expect too much. I travel a bit, going to bogs, and wooded areas. Even though I take lots of pictures(isn't digital great) of trees and rocks and landscapes, it is the micro images that I look to for surfaces in my pots. I am really enthralled with close ups of cranberry bogs, crowberry bushes, patches of moss next to lichen on a craggy rock. Reindeer moss at the edge of a small gravel slide with new growth popping up through the pebbles.  These things occur all over, and can be so beautiful, but so overlooked. Yet immensely difficult to bring about on glazed surface.




#55879 Top Ten Myths About Creativity

Posted by Pres on 01 April 2014 - 06:21 AM

Oh I like it! Wait until the Feds get a hold of this one and throw us into a higher tax bracket! :wacko:




#55717 Why Decorate Pots?

Posted by Pres on 29 March 2014 - 05:33 PM

The largest bowl I ever threw on the wheel was 36" in diameter glaze fired. I had done a series of calligraphic brush strokes over a nice oatmeal colored glaze. It is a very fine piece. We gave it to my wife's sister. It sits in the den full of magazines!




#55716 What Is The Most Incorrect "rule" You Ever Heard For Pottery?

Posted by Pres on 29 March 2014 - 05:22 PM

On teachers, the classroom, and success, I came to believe that in Elementary school the success of the art lesson was 90% dependent on the teacher, choice of media, teaching style, supervision, and organization. In Junior High it was more like 60/40 with the onus on the teacher. Then in HS more like 50/50. So in my ceramics classroom, there were some cone 6 pots with cone 06 glazes on them. Specifically, reds, and greens that really could only occur at low fire. They were not red, and had run to the base of the pot glueing down to an old crusty shelf piece that they had been on. I also had a piece with a particular ^6 glaze that really was ^5 called sea green pearl.  The demonstration pot showed that the glaze could not go below 2 inches from the bottom of the pot without running off. Part of my 50%.




#55709 An Apology

Posted by Pres on 29 March 2014 - 04:59 PM

In this day of texting, increased use of slang and colloquialisms, and a general degradation of the language arts, it is difficult for those of us who believe that proper grammar and spelling is of grave importance to ignore misspelling. That is difficult to overlook, and at times grievous to many of us and even more so for those of us that are or have been concerned educators. TJR's apology only underlines how he feels about this community. I applaud his apology, and look forward to enjoying his depth of knowledge here on the forums.

 

On a side note, I have corrected titles here that have had misspelling. This was done not so much out of making things correct, as to making search engines be able to find a strand when a search is made on a subject.




#55439 Opinions On Pre-Mixed Dry Glazes?

Posted by Pres on 26 March 2014 - 06:30 AM

 

Pres, how much cheaper, was it for you to mix your own glazes?  Right now, I've not had an issue with budget.  I use pre-mixed liquid glazes, and spend a couple hundred on them.  I've often thought of saving money, by mixing, though I'm not sure I have the space or time to do so.

 

Start up was more in the first few years. I started by getting the triple beam, the bins, and buckets for glaze(had janitors save floor wax buckets). Then the next few years I ordered glaze materials for specific glazes that I knew worked. When I ordered these I limited my materials by choosing glazes that used the same materials. Buying the oxides for color is the biggest hit, but once done can last quite a while. After the fourth year I figured savings in the 20-30% range. Second year was equal to buying commercial and the third was about 10% less.  You find that with a good inventory you are not buying all materials every year, and that costs stay level.  Buy at bulk prices, don't buy 10# of frit, buy a bag etc.




#55319 Why Decorate Pots?

Posted by Pres on 24 March 2014 - 03:10 PM

Awesome TJR!




#55308 Best Clay To Start Throwing With

Posted by Pres on 24 March 2014 - 02:21 PM

Tia, I would ask a few questions. Where in the country do you live, I assume you have thrown some before, was the clay stiffer or softer than you are using. When did you order in the clay as compared to when you started using it? I ask these questions because 1) You may find a supplier near you with a better seller/potter relationship, 2)Your expectations are often based on what you have used before. 3) If you had ordered the clay several months before using, sometimes the way things are sealed lately it could have stiffened up some.

 

As to the clay you have now, you could try cut and slam wedging with layers of water in-between. I often bring clay back by doing this. Cut bread like slices off the block, put finger dimples in the first piece, spray with water, place second piece of clay on top, pound down with back of hand, repeat until all clay is used-spray between each layer slightly. slam the block onto the wedging table several times on all sides, stand on an edge 90 degrees from first-repeat. Do this for about 6 or 7 times, then put clay in bag and reseal. Let sit for a few days, then wedge it up. This should help return the clay to a decent throwing consistency. If you have clay that is wet(thrown and very wet) and some dryer clay, do the same without the spray bottle. Make two blocks and alter the slices wet to dry then block up the same way and store for a week. Re-wedge.




#55094 How To Turn Cobalt Blues Into Something Much More Subtle?

Posted by Pres on 20 March 2014 - 09:41 PM

Base glazes that have Strontium in them as replacement for Barium will also do a little different color with cobalt.




#54800 Casual Workshop Questions

Posted by Pres on 16 March 2014 - 04:23 PM

When working with adults, especially ones that want to be there, whether teaching a class or giving a workshop, there is one thing to remember, they want to know everything you know, and right then and there. When doing any of these things a day or two or a week, my best advice is to get plenty of sleep before hand, because you will need everything you've got, they will drain you. :rolleyes:




#54761 Casual Workshop Questions

Posted by Pres on 15 March 2014 - 11:13 PM

When i did adult informal classes, I had everyone write down contact numbers, what sort of experience they had with ceramics, what their other interests were, and what they wanted most to get out of the class, whether a new skill, or a certain type of project. As I taught in the winter on Saturday mornings contact numbers were important here in PA. The cards would be handed in, I would use them in a quick session to get to connect names and faces, and discuss their interests-quickly.  Then we usually started with demonstrations on the first day that would include a wheel throwing and a hand building usually slabs. I would have my slabs for the project rolled out and all cut, but then I would demo with wedging two ways-rams head, and cone. Then roll out slabs with rolling pin and slab roller. Cutting the slabs and if all the same-template design. Then beveling edges using a fettling knife and board edge and a bevel tool. At this point I would pull out the preformed beveled slabs for assembly of the project and discuss clay consistency including wet, cheese hard, leather hard, and bone dry.Then assembly with slip, or/and with Magic water. 

The wheel throwing demonstration pushed heavy emphasis on mastering and centering, then on opening up, compressing bottom, recentering, then the pulling and shaping. Always check for understanding, and have them put hands on to feel what a centered piece of clay should feel like, and what a centered donut feels like. I often would reinforce the fact that if they had never worked on the wheel to be patient, as they had no pre-learning to help them out with the learning curve. I also stressed that most potters believe the first steps to be mastered before trying to move on. I also told them to start with 3# of clay when learning. I would finish off with the demonstrations, telling them that if they had problems or missed anything to just ask, I would be willing to demonstrate individually as much as they needed. Finally, I made certain as with HS students that they knew that there were no stupid questions. Sometimes it can be tedious, but if you get it in your head, they'll get it in theirs.