Saturday, April 28, 2007

kiln and pots

these are some pots that i have been working on. i have ceased doing production ware for awhile so that i can concentrate on a bunch of new ideas and hopefully make some good work to get me into grad school.
this is thrown and then paddled to give it some sharp corners. its not finished and i'm not sure where its going, but i like it.

this is my barn. even though i live next to a cult, i always love the view when walking to my barn. i feel really blessed to live here.
pile o' bricks. these are fun to move. not.

this is the base of my kiln. on the left is the firebox, you can make out the stoke hole just below the pole, and the ash cleanout on the bottom. the stacking area will be on the left right in front of the flu channels. the arch will be about 4 feet tall above the stacking area. i was hoping to get the arch up today but discovered that metal barns are really hot during the day. i'm going to have to cut some windows for cross-ventilation when firing so i don't die from heat stroke.

closeup of the firebox(left) and stacking area.

front of the firebox. you can see the holes for air and for the hobs.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

new ideas and a new kiln

this is a corner of my barn. this is where i am going to build my new kiln. after i level the very unlevel floor.

these plates are a series that i've been toying with from time to time. i started them when i was in college, but they were never very successful, cracking and whatnot. generally pretty ugly. i was trying to be don reitz, so they weren't very original. there is still a heavy influence in these but i think that i've successfully made them my own.

these plates are pretty stout, i start with about 40lbs of clay and lay it out into a real thick platter. the distortions on the rims are done before laying out the rim all the way. these ones run between 22-24". all the "decoration" is done while it is still wet on the wheel. i wipe and rib away any throwing rings and then lay down a sifted layer of kaolin and sometimes some wood ash accents. i always push in some little pieces of dried clay. thats kind of my signature.

i really enjoy making these from time to time, it lets me do something a little more expressive and risky with a medium that i'm comfortable in. it pushes my limits physically, 40 lbs of clay is no small feat to work with. it also pushes me creatively to find a solution to decorate this large open surface using only raw materials, there is no glaze on these pieces. i rely purely on the texture and kaolin dusting mixed with the salt and ash in the kiln atmosphere to give it the appropriate surface.