Friday, September 28, 2012

LARGE Tea Pots

I have been in contact with a lady who is looking for a LARGE tea pot. I guess she used to be a student at Fairview, but has since moved out of the province. She had a very large 12 cup tea pot that Dave made, but he doesn't really make work to sell any more. So, he passed her info on to me and vice versa.

Here are 3 that I have made so far in the LARGE format. The first 2 are based off of a picture of a teapot that she liked. I try not to copy other people's work, but have taken cues from it to hopefully come up with something she will enjoy. The only issue i can see with scaling the style of pot she is looking for up to 12 cups is that the amount of clay used gets to be a bit heavy. The 2 teapots below were thrown from between 6 & 7 lbs of clay (including lid and spout). I think, after shrinkage, that they will only hold 8 cups, maybe 10. I then threw a more traditional tea pot (ie: round) from 6 lb's of clay, and it will deffinatley hold a much larger volume of tea. The rounder shapes are streached and shaped, volume is added by thinning the walls via shaping. The pots shown here can only attain more volume by adding more clay and therefore weight... I like their shape, but I don't think they will be easy to pick up.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Delayed Blogification

So I have not really posted anything of substance in a while. I have been a wee bit busy. Last week was crazy. I taught last Monday evening, so right after work I was off to the studio and did not get home until about 9:45 ish. Tuesday was my regular night to teach and again, not home until about 10:00. Wednesday was weird. I took a sick day and slept almost the whole day. My back was hurting, I was very tired, and just generally not feeling up to snuff. However, I did have plans that evening. I went out to dinner with my parents and my friend Barb. My parents were thanking us for business that we drove their way. Thursday I had an appointment at the bank and my head was full of numbers and possibilities. Friday I was at the studio again. I worked at CC on Saturday, and then back to the studio all day on Sunday. This week is not so bad, but Dave is away until October 10th visiting friends and family in Kansas, so I will be teaching his classes on the Mondays on top of my Tusdays until then, as well as feeding his fish, checking his mail and just generally making sure his house does not flood or burn down. I will try to load a glaze tonight, and perhaps a bisque on Friday. I loaded the students work for bisque firing last night, so that will hopefully be cool by this evenings class, as there are a couple of people who want to do a raku firing tonight and their pieces were in the bisque.

I guess I am keeping out of trouble, just not getting much posted. I need to send a few pictures off to a potential customer to see if she likes any of the teapots I have been working on, as well as post more pots on Etsy. I have been really lazy with that. I also went out at lunch and bought a printer. I have managed to live my life without one for a while, but I find I really do need one now, what with the possibility of having to ship pottery, as well as my tentative foray into the wild world of the stock market (i need to keep track of charts and stuff). That's right, I am going to start “investing” for my “future”. Apparently I wont retire on my pottery/lottery “winnings”. If I make a ton of dough, I'll let you know what beach I am sitting on. If I lose it all, I may need to pawn my computer....

Friday, September 21, 2012

Fancy Legs

The women in my immediate family (my mum, sister and myself) suffer from what my mum has always termed “antsy legs”. The pharmaceutical industry has now termed it “restless leg syndrome”. I guess to be able to charge money for a new drug. Anyway, for a while now, we have been calling this irritating problem “fancy legs”. My sister was talking about her antsy leg to a friend, who had no idea what she was talking about and misunderstood and thought she was saying that she had “fancy legs”. So there ya go.

Long story short, I was unable to get to sleep for a while last night due to this problem. I also love to self diagnose myself via the internet. I have had localized muscle pain in my left buttock, and I think it is Piniformis Syndrom. The piniformis muscle is rubbing against the sciatic nerve due to pelvic torsion caused by a car accident 10 years ago. I think this is also exacerbating the fancy leg problem. I went to the massage therapist a couple of weeks ago and she worked a miracle (albeit only temporary). However, that night, the fancy leg was quite extreme, so me thinks they are linked.   On the clay front, the kilns are now working again. The electrician was in to diagnose/fix them on Monday. They both had some relay issues. So tonight, I guess I will be loading what did not fire properly last week. I have some more plates to terra sig, and 2 very large bottles that I have already terra sig'd and now need shellacking. The new batch of sig is very good. I am getting a very high gloss on it after burnishing. The last batch seemed to haze up and never really got very shiny. It almost makes me want to pit fire them...

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Back to work on Saturday

After having had 2 whole months off from working Saturdays, I will be going back to Ceramics Canada this weekend. My biceps have had 2 months off from shifting boxes of clay and I know they are not going to like this drastic change in activity level. It will however be nice to reconnect with the community of clay people. I have not seen the CC people at all over the summer and it will be nice to catch up with what has been going on there. To be quite honest, I am ready for this summer to be over anyway. Not that I had a bad summer, I just need a change of scenery and a few different faces (plus I get to go on a mini holiday in just over 6 weeks!). Having spent most Saturdays at the studio this summer, with not many people around has been a bit solitary and now it is time to pick the socialness up a little. I got a lot done this summer, not as much as I would have liked in terms of glaze testing, but I did fool around with some hand building, which just reaffirmed why it is best left to those that really know what they are doing. I don't have the patience for it. I tend to assemble too quickly, or not quickly enough and scale has always been an issue as well. My pieces always seem a bit unwieldy and wonky as I don't know when to stop (kinda like when I was a kid at a salad bar). For example, I made a flower brick/vase. Some of it was thrown, some slab, some pinched. By the time it was done, it had more of a “Noah's Ark” massiveness to it. The only good thing I can say about it is that it did not crack during the making process and it managed to survive the bisque.

On the crock front, I have completed the 12 8"x8"crocks for my friend's wedding. Here are 3 of them with the name stamped in cobalt blue slip. I have removed the smaller text, as it just read as blobs. I have a half a bag of the clay I used for them left over, so I will probably just make a few smaller crocks as well.