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Everything posted by yappystudent

  1. Apologies if this has been suggested before but I'm curious if anyone else uses "Kiln Gods" or Gremlins when firing their kiln. My first experience with clay was as a laborer trimming cups in a small production factory. (back in the early 80's, called Shapiro's Ceramic and Design, they took over from the slightly more well-known Overland Stoneware) They had two car kilns there and the owner who did the firing had a couple hideous little figures that looked kind of like what you see stuck on face jugs. According to him these were his "kiln gods" who watched over the firing process, and we weren't allowed to place them. My father was a Mason and a master welder for the air force. My mother told me that whenever they were having problems with a plane repeatedly, during the fix they made a gremlin out of scrap metal and welded it somewhere inside the body of the aircraft where it wouldn't be seen.
  2. Because drawing and painting are not tactile enough, and I need the tactile payoff for some reason. I can draw and paint really well, I have good ideas for creating images, but find the process a means to an end. With clay the process is part of what I enjoy about creating sculpture. Also I've just always wanted to do sculpture but couldn't find a satisfactory medium until I tried ceramics.
  3. Painting tons of testers. 

  4. Successfully test fired the new kiln last night. :lol::lol:

    1. Show previous comments  2 more
    2. Denice


      Now you can get to work.  Congratulations

    3. GEP


      Great job!

    4. glazenerd


      Always nice when things work as they should.

  5. Wandering around town looking for a pair of tongs. Gorgeous day. 

  6. Another long drive today to pick up firing cones and a few other things. The countdown begins. 

    1. Mark C.

      Mark C.

      would it be cheaper to order online than drive?

    2. yappystudent


      Not if you consider the 3 bags of clay I bought, and the indescribably beautiful drive up the coast and through the forest. If you think I was complaining clearly you misunderstand. 

  7. Spiky fish. Vessels with wavy rims. Anthropomorphic creatures. Ammonites. Anomalocarus. Rafflesia. Alien flora. I've always been interested in the idea of "weird" lifeforms: from likely-future bio-engineering, earth's deep time past, or just speculation. I've yet to work out exactly what I want to use, the message it would express, and how to carry off successful pieces. Figures of some kind as well as wall art of some kind definitely likely.
  8. The plug is installed.:huh: Now to cut the cement board. 

    1. Mark C.

      Mark C.

      Great- moving forward

  9. I think there are lots of clues that play on our brains in this regard. Our species is designed to pick up on cues that help us to conform to a social norm, it's been proven it's a major part of our survival technique. Figuring out what group we fit into and which we don't were and sometimes still are life and death decisions. I think you have to get pretty far into minimalism to stop giving cues and enter the area of "gender neutral" in regards to creating something. I definitely intentionally do work that I define as either female, male, or neutral. E.g: I'm working on some vivid glaze techniques for some of my 'ware' type work. I don't expect men to be buying the pastels and hot pinks, so I'm also making black, blue, red. A little story: I went into a semi-local gallery and stumbled upon knee-hi sculptures in driftwood with rough ceramic faces, shockingly close to an idea I thought I'd come up with myself. So much for that notion, but despite the heavy materials and primitive chunky claywork it seemed obvious it was done by a female artist. Despite their being displayed as sculpture there was an unapologetic vulnerability to the work that I have never seen in a man's work. Aside from the obvious, I'd say female artists -in general- have more tendency towards pure expression and creativity coming from their own selves. When men -and this is a generalization of course- get creative they seem to do it within a subconscious awareness of it being judged by other men, and want to succeed or surpass an existing accepted set of norms. Whether it will sell a lot of copies, honor an ancient tradition started by (male) potters, make them famous, or win shows isn't always foremost in the mind of a female artist, self expression or simple enjoyment of the artistic process is. Also, men seem to have a lot more interest with working with machinery, while women are more interested in hand building. This may have something to do with social-economic issues as well as inner desires (women artists can't afford as much fancy equipment), but at least in my case I've never given a fiddle dee dee about wheel work, I feel like I'm robbing my hands and head of what they really want to do.
  10. I have a medium size collection of new age music that I'll usually play as background to get going, then I'll sometimes stream OPB.org until I can't stand the news anymore. After that it's reruns on my monthly Netflix. Since I hand build in my kitchen I can see the computer screen. Sci-fi when they have something new, endless star trek when they don't. Also lots and lots of British crime dramas, I like the scenery.
  11. Nice looking white glazes over dark.
  12. 1. The forums here. For example I don't think I could survive the kiln buying and installing, let alone learning curve for using it, if I didn't have a resource like this. 2. Youtube: I really do find that a (moving) picture is worth a thousand words and stimulates my interest and creative flow. I especially enjoy pottery making current and past in other cultures. Mid century Fat Lava to pit fired South African, makes me feel like I'm part of something important and close to the Earth. 4. Etsy: partly because I would like to open and manage my own shop there, but cruising all the items and makers stimulates ideas of the "I could do that" type. 5. Georgie's catalog and other ceramic supply houses' websites: For example I like surfing through the glaze section wondering what I could do with this or that glaze, how it's used, can I use it? what is it made from, etc. 6. Two college classes: Because negative examples can also be useful if you recognize them as such.
  13. Making a mug for a neighbor...I sense a slippery slope here.

    1. Min


      Yeah, neighbours can be tricky, want to get along with them but not be taken advantage of. 

  14. Just to show I actually use some of the things I make for myself. That is an apple pip sprouting on the right! The left is red oxide under satin clear, over a red clay body, all low fired. BTW I collect moss and lichens to grow.
  15. Well the kiln is now home. No plug for it yet but the thing itself is here. 

  16. Drumming my fingers, waiting to go pick up my kiln in Eugene. Weather and appointments in the way.  

    1. dhPotter


      Where did you decide to put the new kiln? Last word I saw, you couldn't put it in the shed. 

    2. yappystudent


       Still unsettled as to it's final location. 

  17. Removed overgrown rose to make room for electrician to access the outside wall of metal shed. Still not enough room! Will have to change where the kiln goes. 

  18. Rain. Rain. Rain. Some wind also. 

  19. Case in point: I did a series of lovely soap dishes I meant to sell at christmas, they were in a cone ^6 brown clay which I'd found to be fairly foolproof at the old shop I was taking it to and where I bought it. They fired everything to cone 6. When I moved last fall, noticed odd things were happening to my ^6 glazes at the new shop. Because of this I decided to glaze and 'test' one of my soap dishes all the way through with my most dependable low fire underglaze (which always did ok up to ^6) but put a ^6 clear glaze over it. What I got back was -for about 20 min- a beautiful luscious red soap dish, but making suspicious pinging and popping noises as it proceeded to craze all over. Took it home still trying to figure out what was wrong, put it on the sink and put a wet bar of soap in it: as soon as the water hit it, the dish started fizzling like dry terra cotta, and glaze pieces started falling off. The dish was so messed up I tossed it rather than even save it for mosaic shards. Really glad I didn't do the rest of the soap dishes, I'm saving them for my new kiln. Later found out the shop is actually only firing to ^.06 (I've complained about this a lot already, I apologize). This may happen to you, beware!
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