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About LeeU

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 07/14/1947

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  • Location
    New Hampshire
  • Interests
    In addition to clay, I'm interested in painting, photography, and writing. Recently retired from 30 years in behavioral health services, just getting back to enjoying and making art. I have a BFA in ceramics from VCU's School of the Arts (Virginia Commonwealth University). I recently completed setting up a small in-home studio.

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  1. Any major, known, reason to not experiment with low fire refiring commercial terra cotta flower pots with some experimentation with low fire glaze? I'd prefer to know now if it's just gonna explode! Thanks.
  2. Wow---I am now ashamed to admit that I live in NH (Lakes Region) and have never been to Castle in the Clouds! I go through Moultonborough frequently, on my way to see friends in Conway. Will be rectifying that soon, for sure! PS-you mentioned "here in NH"--where 'bouts are you based?--just curious.
  3. Hits the nail on the head! I must put in a plug for my ceramics education---a fantastic, high-quality state school, with top-notch facilities/instructors, the public, non-profit Virginia Commonwealth University: School of the Arts. https://arts.vcu.edu/ Do some research on it. Also, if you go to NCECA this year, it is being held in Richmond, which has a deeply traditional and robust long-standing arts community. https://www.visarts.org/nceca-2020/
  4. Hahaha...speak for yourself! Actually, the thread has really been interesting.
  5. There are so many excellent resources. paid and for free, in person and online, for assistance with marketing and customer service. I like to remind people in the U.S. of SCORE (formally the Service Corp of Retired Executives ) which has over 350 chapters throughout the country and provides outstanding, relevant, and substantial, no-cost, consulting for small business owners & people like me (hobby biz). Their help was crucial to what is now an effectively run operation, however modest in scale.
  6. Precisely!!! And in my world, that is as it should be! I have an affinity for Voulkos' observation about technique & having something to say--however one says it. Once I'd mastered those blasted 100 perfectly same, perfect cylinders I was DONE!!! My only consistency is in my inconsistency...which annoyingly enough loops right back around to consistency when seen as a cumulative body of work (mixed media), even when I thought I had shaken it off.
  7. I like the "banner" up top--the graphic affect & pallet is kinda "soothing" and intriguing simultaneously-nice vibe.

    1. Mr. Ray

      Mr. Ray

      Purely by accident. 


    2. LeeU


      Maybe that's the best kind, for resultant artfulness. ;)

    3. Mr. Ray

      Mr. Ray

      I don't know where my pottery endeavors will lead me. but I wont be measuring to a sixteenth of an inch and it won't be square!


  8. Well, I just learned that something I have been doing since first putting my hands on clay, which I call "excavating" (series Excavations) has a name for the approach, the Japanese term kuri nuki (carving out). I didn't know the term--it is just something I do 'cuz I like it! Cool.
  9. Portland Supply is a nice little store, has an attached studio operation, and also a great healthy foods cafe right in the shop, which is fun! They only carry 2 brands of clay and 4 of glazes-mainly Laguna, Standard & Amaco. I go a few times a year, but driving from central NH, I do almost as well having my clay/glazes shipped when I want other brands and my order is large enough. Portland at times has items that are out of stock---I always call first to be sure they have what I'm looking for & they are very accommodating about getting & holding things. Large orders definitely need a phone conversation well in advance, just to be safe. You probably know about the Southern Maine Clay Guild, but there is also the New Hampshire Potters Guild, which is open to potters in other states-quite a few are from Maine. https://www.nhpottersguild.org/ The dues are inexpensive and benefits include a Biennial Exhibition (next in 2021/we're planning it now). Congratulations on the studio!
  10. I remember trying vinegar instead of water a long time ago--no success--didn't work, just as plain water doesn't--the joins needed slip. I use either slip , slip w/vinegar, or, for the best result, Peggy Heer's "Spooze". This stuff generally works miracles for me, when I can justify a "repair" or just need a super tight join. Once it sets, it may need sanding to smooth it to "invisibility". Here is her recipe from an old post: Peggy Heer on sat 26 oct 96 Hi ...SPOOZE recipe one more time..... 1/3 dry clay body you are using 1/3 vinegar, ordinary white kitchen vin. 1/3 corn syrup, white or brown. A drop or 2 of peroxide, out of your bathroom cabinet. This is to keep the spooze from fermenting and giving off a real stink. Make thin by adding more of the corn syrup or vin. Make thicker by adding more of the dry clay body. The above rec. is only a base to start from. I use my dried trimmings for my spooze and have a S. jar for each clay body I use. Wash tools, brushes etc after using as the spooze will become cement like and is not good for tools and brushes if they are left. If left with out a good washing, soak in a cup of warm water till the spooze comes off. Have a fun, sticky time. ;>}}} As Always in Clay Peggy
  11. Intriguing...why do you want to do either of these things? More information/context would be helpful, including the type of work, the clay/glaze/temperature to be fired to etc.
  12. I don't have a huge inventory so I keep it in several large storage carts with deep drawers, or large totes. Each piece has an item code and a reference photo that I keep on a spreadsheet, assigned to broad categories, i.e catchalls, bowls, desk top items, wall pieces etc. I can look on the spreadsheet for what I want and go straight to the labeled container it's stored in. Works for me!
  13. A little more info would be helpful. Is this a clay studio or a paint-your-own facility? Assuming your kiln is electric, what temps/cones are you going to be firing to? You say the kiln needs "love"--what exactly do you mean & what kind of kiln is it? You should be able to re-hydrate the clay but you need to know what they are--low, mid, or high fire bodies? I'd definitely have conversations with the glaze distributors for products that old...make a list from the label info so you can tell them exactly what you have. What a project-sounds like a great opportunity.
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