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About SShirley

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    Cow Creek Pottery

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  • Location
    Pittsburg, Kansas

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  1. The clay studios in their imaginations must be a very clean and calm place. Mine isn't one of those. There is dust, mess, aggravation, frustration and annoyance, tempered with just enough bliss to make it all worthwhile.
  2. Karen, you are so right about the aprons and towels. I love the shower cap idea, too. And I never even thought about the pillowcase. Great suggestions! Thanks! Sylvia
  3. Thanks guys! I think I'm going to hire somebody to come give the studio and gallery a good wet cleaning to get out what dust there is already. (This place is a mess!) Then start from scratch with better practices. I already do wet mopping, but not often enough. I wish I had a floor drain. Also thinking I might mix my glazes inside the spray booth. I think dipping my glazes would be better than spraying in the future. I know after a day of mixing or spraying glaze I can hardly breathe when I get home, so I'm not doing it right. I have not used my respirator as much as I should have in the past, so I need to get into that habit. I have so much trouble breathing with the darn thing on, but I will try again. Thanks for your suggestions. Sylvia
  4. I was just diagnosed with it and wanted to see if there were any other potters out there and how they deal with it. My fear is that I will have to give up clay. For those who don't know, it's a genetic disorder that can destroy the lungs and liver. Patients are supposed to avoid all environmental irritants, like smoke, chemicals and dust. Thanks, Sylvia
  5. I have done it. I burned up several mixers trying to make slip, but, it worked. Be sure to sieve the slip to avoid as many lumps as possible. It is tougher to squeeze clay slip than icing, though.
  6. Thanks! These are all great suggestions. I'm getting the studio straightened up to make more room for making a mess. I'm really starting to look forward to it. Sylvia
  7. My grandkids are going to be coming to the studio off and on over the summer starting next week, and I'm looking for projects they might like. I've searched online and found some cute ideas, but thought I might throw it out there and see if anybody has different, fun suggestions. They are ages 4 (boy), 6 (girl), 10 (girl) and 12 (boy). I thought I'd let the oldest two try the wheel, plus some slab projects and a pinch pot. Probably slab stuff for the youngest two. I'm not really good with kids, and have never done classes or anything like that, so I'm a little scared. We have been estranged for 5 years and just reconnected two weeks ago, so I hoped this would be a good way to get to know them again. They will be coming to the studio one at a time, so I don't have to do the same things with all of them. I know the little guy has a short attention span. The oldest boy is obsessed with technology, so he may not be interested in such a low-tech thing as clay. Some of the ideas I had were: Whistles Slab bowls A cup Wind chimes Refrigerator magnets Slab turtles Owls Slab dogs Any other suggestions will be much appreciated. Or places to look online. Thanks, Sylvia
  8. http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=FP0XDogwwW8&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DFP0XDogwwW8 This is a video from Old Salem in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. It may be based on something even older than 1800, but I'm sure it is historical.
  9. Not me. I tried it but didn't like seeing my ugly self in the mirror. Better to just bend over once in a while. Sylvia
  10. I try to print my name, first and last, legibly on the bottom of each piece, with a ball stylus, or use a nice stamp that I got from Jet Stamps. On bigger pieces, like plates, I try to add the name of my town. Not the date, but when first starting out I did put the date. A couple of months ago a lady emailed me and said she thought she had one of my mugs. It said "sylvia92" on the bottom. She bought it at a yard sale in San Francisco, and it had been her favorite mug for years. I live in Kansas, so I told her I did not think it could possibly be mine, there are a number of other potters with the same first name, some who live in California. She sent me a picture of the bottom, and sure enough, it was my signature. I can't imagine how she found me with just that much info, but she did. The mug broke and she wanted another one. Also, I had a pretty nice pot sitting on my shelf for five years without a signature. Many, many people looked at the piece and almost bought it until they noticed it wasn't signed, then put it back and bought something else that they didn't like as much but had a signature. Finally one lady came in with a sharpie marker and asked me to sign the bottom, then bought it. So signatures do matter to customers.
  11. I found a Clay Boss quite by accident at a garage sale. Practically unused, too. $100. It wasn't my first choice for brand, but the price was right. And I just missed a kick wheel for $50, but somebody got it first. I think there have been a few here because this is a college town, and people take a class, get pumped up, buy some equipment, and then lose interest.
  12. I'm not going. I went once when it was in Phoenix and hated it. It felt too much like high school. All the cool kids gathered together and some of us were on our own. But seriously, it costs too much. I'd rather spend that money on buying books, tools, videos or going to workshops. I did like all the exhibits though, and some of the presentations were nice. It was frustrating though, that some good things were going on at the very same time so you had to choose one or the other, so I felt like I missed out on a lot.
  13. I think we need an additional potter to devise a homemade tool to do the job better, and make a utube video to show how it works.
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