Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sprigging YoYos

Well I couldn't wait to get cracken on trying out one of the new sprigs molds. These were as much fun to use these as I hoped they would be. I gave them a try on a new series of YoYo canisters that Ron Philbeck showed us how to create last week in his videos part 1 and part 2. (The YoYos are proving to initially be way harder to make than he made it look on his videos. I'm having to give these suckers a few tosses to get a handle on them.) My hope is that these sprigs might help me create the "speed bumps" on the sides of my kitchen canisters that I've been mulling over for a few years. It's worth finally giving it a try.


I'm also finally getting around to trying a low fire premixed glaze in an effort to create an elusive effect that I'm hoping will finish off some sculptural works for local showings next week. This will be another round of "all or nothing" attempts. You think I'd know better by now, but the Hammer of Judgment waits... This is the first time I've played with glaze from a jar. I can't wait to open the kiln tomorrow night.

This is a peice from a post last winter... I'm filling in the craters in my MoonCrater White glaze with a Neon Yellow glaze in hope of creating a few hundred yellow fireflies that'll float on the surface of this piece. My fingers are crossed...


The handful of spriggs that I made using waxes from my jewelry studio 2 weeks ago found their way to the bisque kiln this week. A few cracked but still work pretty well.

Not really sure how I'm going to work most of these into the designs going through the studio right now, but I think the question marks will begin turning into lightbulbs as they start getting used.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Call for Entry for "Visions in Clay 2010"

Exhibition Dates: August 26 - September 23, 2010
Entry Dates: Febuary 1 - June 1, 2010
Best of show: $1000, 2nd Place: $600, 3rd Place: $350, and non-cash Merit Awards will be selected by the juror.

For a detailed look at this year’s prospectus, click here… or click the “Visions in Clay” image on the right sidebar.

After a 5 year hiatus, this national exhibition is once again putting out a call to artists. This is the 4th go round for the “Visions in Clay” project and what started out envisioned as a small exhibition of regional works, quickly turned into a major national showing of emerging new talent. As I flipped through the 2005 show catalog, I was amazed how the list of selected artists read like a “Who’s Who” of North American ceramics art and art education.

The big change this year is the use of the Smarter Entries system for registration.
It’s fairly strait forward… images must be formatted as a JPG at 72dpi, with a max side length of 1,280 pixels. File size cannot exceed 2 MB.
The big plus is that the artists can load up 0 to 3 submissions when they register for the exhibition and come back later to add entries or switch out any of their submissions before the June 1st deadline.

The other big change is that this years’ show catalog will be put online with links out to the artists.

Entry Fee: $25 for 3 images during the early bird special running until March 1st, $30 for 3 images thereafter. Additional images of work and/or detail images may be purchased for $3 per image, limited to 3 additional work entries.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Orchids of Osmos

Freashly slipped canisters waiting for the designs to stiffen up a bit more before peeling the latex off of the rim and ribbed band.

Laying out a few ideas for spring designs.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Hamberger Yo-Yo

Well like many potters this week, after volgger/potter Ron Philbeck posted his series of video posts on making closed form canisters, (part 1 and part 2). I just had to revisit and reminisce my way though this project. This was one of the first projects that my old ASU professor, Randy Schmidt, gave my class as a way to introduce creating a lid and galley from a closed from. This is basic stuff that, quite honestly, I had forgotten about while I ran around reinventing a few wheels.

The form Ron outlined is like an old familiar jazz riff, there are regional aesthetics involved in the form that he presented... but the fun of all of this is all about making changes to the riff and standing next to the work that comes off the wheel.

Thanks Ron for setting me off in a new direction.
Stay tuned...

Saturday, February 20, 2010

8 Fluid Ounces 2010

Tonight is the opening reception for the “8 Fluid Ounces” show at the Glassell Gallery in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

I really wish I could be there to check out the show… After Googling the line-up of artists that have been selected for this show, I’m thrilled to be represented as part of this group. I’m grinning ear to ear.

Here’s the line-up…

Show dates are Feb. 20 - March 21, 2010

Reception is Saturday, February 20, 2010 6-8pm

Glassell Gallery - LSU School of Art

Shaw Center for the Arts

100 Lafayette Street

Baton Rouge, LA 70801

PS. If anyone has a link for Rebekah Strickland, I'm be most obliged...

Monday, February 15, 2010

Working in the BoneOrchard

Spent the weekend running a new cone 5 clay through the studio. For my cone 5-6 electric work, I use a white smooth bodied clay, (Laguna B-Mix) and a medium bodied red (Laguna RedStone). I 've habitually used these 2 bodies to develop and explore explore my pallet.

I'm looking for a course buff clay so I'm starting with Laguna Calico. it threw well and stood strong while forming larger canisters.
The real test will be how the clay reacts to slipping and glazing though. On that end, this gave me an excuse to cut two new stencil design sets that had been bumping around in the back of my head all week. One is a leaf and stem motif that's worked into the background. I like how it worked out... The second is a geometric design that's to be used for a decal project.

Saturday, February 13, 2010


It's been a fun week of throwing all of the yunomi needed to test out this springs' glaze and slip combos. I'm playing this first round fairly safe, but there's a pleasant bunch of question marks going through as well. You can always dream and hope for the best, but... well... we will see in a week or so.

A few agateware yunomi going through this load too.

Here's a new clip of throwing a lid for a canister that's headed through the kilns this week.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

See Saw

Sitt'n at the bench pin cutting out a few wallets of stencils for a kiln load of yunomi and canasters. Comming off the bowls project, I've got a few ideas that I quickly tried on my bowls and now it's time to see how the ideas translate to other forms.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Casual Influence of Dan Finnegan

Surprise! The kids and I got to open up a very special box yesterday. It was a mug from east coast ceramic artist and blogger Dan Finnegan. This is a big thing for us, we’ve seen lots of amazing examples of salt glazed ware but we haven’t actually gotten to handle any examples as of yet. As I look around, salt glazing seems to be a rare item out here on the west coast. So as I said, this is a big thing for us

Dan’s work is so different from mine and needless to say, my kids went nutz over it. (Thanks Dan, we snuck in a small victory on that one… now my youngest wants to find a salt glazed wood-fire to participate in this year… I told her it’s all about huge piles of combustibles, camping, and fantastic plain-air cooking. She’s hooked.)

Other than the salt glazed and wood fired angle, the detail that I’m focusing in on is Dan's use of sprigged accents.
I use a sprigged element to hallmark my ware, but I seem to have neglected taking it any further. This is something I’ve put off exploring any further for a few years now… so I’ve grabbed a few of my waxes from my metals studio to use to create a new set of experimental sprigg moulds to play with on the next load of ware.

Thanks for the kick in the pants Dan! I’m looking to make you proud…

Monday, February 8, 2010

Arriving in Style

I love vintage agricultural produce crates. Out here in the ag belt of California, they still are turning up, but more and more rarely and usually they are pretty beat-up. I’m attracted to the casual craftsmanship that cobbled together a working crate that could, very evidently, survive a decade or 3 of abuse. More notably, I really love the romanticism of the printed graphics that they pasted onto the end of each crate. This was before moo cards and websites… and in the local and regional market places it worked. Like I was saying... Style.

Sunday, February 7, 2010


My wife recently got in contact through FaceBook with the part of her family that's still in France. Her cousin is a musician and is quickly proving to be a joy to connect with... My kids are overjoyed to find out that they are related to gentleman in the video below. He likes Lego's, they like Lego's. Personally, as someone who's just a short walk from my midlife crisis, he's setting the bar for me.
As we like to say around here... "This could get really fun!"

Teaser Tristan T. "L'EGO"©
Uploaded by ideograph. - Watch more music videos, in HD!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Top of the Hill

When you climb the hill... you at least should stop long enough take the view from the top.

Thanks everybody for making this years "Souper Supper" a fantastic success!
Now it's time to run down the other side of the hill and get to work! Yes!

Almost There

Four more bowls from the pile being packed into crates for the Supper Supper event... tonight's the night! After taking a 2 day family timeout to head down to Southern California, it's looking to be a blurr of activity.

Hi Ho!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Mitch Smith

Here is one of the joys of this bowls project... getting to collaborate with other artists just to see what happens. The jewel from last weeks reduction firing was from one of these collaborations... the piece is by local ceramic artist, Mitch Smith. He brought in 10 pieces of greenware to the studio and was brave enough to let us play with them and see what would happen.

The bottom half is glazed in a mystery Shino, the top and interior is OxBlood with a Colman Red over it.
A few more pictures of Mitch's bowls are over at our sister site PortCityMud.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Running Towards the Flags

I'm in the final 4 days before the "Souper Supper" event. Boy, this project really tied-up my time over the past week and a half. Now I'll be playing catch-up for at least a week. The last 110 bowls was a marathon of glazing and firing using my trusty old Paragon for 2 loads of cone 6 firings and 1 load of cone 10 gas reduction. There were a good number of jewels and only a half dozen of duds so I'm going to chalk this one into the win column... Now it's time to sort and pack everything up.

OxBlood and Helmers wash in reduction


Helmers wash