Wednesday, January 27, 2010

More vases

Today I worked on more vases. I tried a few new ideas. The diagonal groves on two of the vases is called lobing. Last night I went to the Mint Hill Arts and watched a pottery demo given by Sylvia Coppola. She demonstrated the lobing as well as a few other techniques I would like to try. I loaded the bisque kiln again tonight and will fire it tomorrow afternoon. It is supposed to snow this weekend (yuck) So I need to work hard tomorrow, since it is forcast to be 60 degrees. I hope the weather is good next week, because I would like to start glazing. I estimate that I have 80 more pieces to throw to be ready for the March show.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Decorative Bowls and Platters

Saturday I made a number of large bowls and platters with decorative handles. We had a lot of rain so they took until this afternoon to dry well enough to trim the foot and add the handles. I really like when these pieces are finished but they have to be dried just right so that the piece is firm enough to work with but still wet enought to be able to add handles. I started a bisque load today and I will probably load it up again in a few days. Next week I will start glazing what I have so far. By the end of February I should be caught up with enough inventory for my March show.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Happy Dance

Because I have been trying to be more efficient with my time, I have a lot more pottery sitting unfinished in my studio. I used to make pots, dry pots, load kiln, glaze, load kiln, empty kiln and either put pottery in my house or imediatly box it up. Now I am not glazing until I have a number of bisque loads done and will do all the pieces with one glaze at a time.

Lately I had been looking for more shelves and since I have very little space in my studio, I wanted shelves with wheels. I looked into "ware carts" which are made for pottery, but they cost between $500-$700 (yikes). You can see in the photo my old shelf in the back and my new unit in front. I came across this unit at Sam's for under $90 (yeah). What is great is that I can adjust the shelves and they have a plastic insert that is smooth (when wet pottery is put on a shelf it picks up any design (flaw) under it.) I am so happy with it that I will probably go out and get another one for my bisque ware, which is sitting on a table right now in the area my car usually goes.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Fun with Vases

Yesterday I had a fun day and made vases. Only 6 got done due to distractions. I try to make every vase different. Today I am going to the Claymatters Pottery Guild "Christmas Party". We have alot of fun. There is a secret gift exchange and it is nice to get a piece of pottery from someone else.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Airport Display

The Carolina Claymatters Pottery Guild has a display at the Charlotte Douglas Airport called "Plane Art". I was finally able to see the display when I went to Montana over Christmas. This is a photo of the pedestal with one of my pieces (tall vase) The display is changed out every 6 months and I will have a new piece in there some time in February.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Berry Bowl Day

My new way to be efficient is to make one item a day in mass production. I also plan on glazing one color line at a time as well, so that I don't waste time thinking about what to do next. Many times this fall I was playing catch up and was all over the place. After I get caught up on my standard pieces, I will do some experimenting.

Today I made Berry Bowls. I have included some photos of the finishing of the bowls. First I center the piece on my foam trimming bat. Then I trim the bottom to make a foot.

Next I do three cut outs to let the water drain freely into the dish. Finally I cut out the holes for drainage. The final thing I will do is add the beading around the edge (not pictured). It is getting warmer out, so tomorrow might be the day I make some vases. (Check out my July 24, 2009 blog to see me assemble a large vase.)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

What's new?

I am experimenting with a couple new items. One is the Egg Cooker. It cooks scrambled eggs in 40 seconds in the microwave. I did a prototype in the Fall that worked great, so I have decided to make some for the next few shows to see how they are received. I have also decided to make these heart shaped shallow bowls. They could have many uses (example: spoon rest, jewelry rest, oil & spice dish, etc) I still need to name them, so if anyone reading this post has an idea, please feel free to comment. The last few weeks I have been stocking up on my regular inventory. It has been cold, so I have had to really push myself to get out to work every morning, but the weather is supposed to be improving.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Happy New Year

Got back from my trip, visiting my family in Montana. We had a great time and one of the highlights was a snowmobile trip into Yellowstone Park.(See photo with my son, Jassim) Brrrr. Today I plan on starting back to work in my studio. I have not thrown a pot since the end of November. It is cold out, so I have turned on my space heater with hopes that it will warm up before I get out there. I am thinking of applying for some shows in Virginia in March, so I need to get to work.