Sunday, August 16, 2009

Back to School = Back to Regular Schedule

It is hard to believe that it has been 40 years since Woodstock! All weekend I have been listening to Jefferson Airplane, Canned Heat, The Who, Janis Joplin and all the others that were such a big part of the three-day concert. I was only 16 at the time and there was no way my parents would have let me go up to New York from Virginia for a concert, but I have always wished I could have been there. All the groups that I listened to as a teenager in one place at one time would have been incredible!

Meetings, meetings, meetings! I spent the last week in meetings at the school where I will be working this year. When everything about the school is new to you, it is not quite as bad as sitting in the same meetings that you have gone to for years. So, for me, it probably wasn't as hard as it was for others. Kids show up Wednesday for a half day and then we are off at full throttle. Actually, I always like the beginning of the school year - everyone seems happy to see each other and sort of excited about being back, at least for the first day.

When I got to the studio on Thursday evening, there were two firings of glaze work ready, so I brought home quite a bit. Most of it came out real well. I did have one rice bowl which must have been close to another piece that drooped in the kiln and pushed on the side of the bowl. As a result, I have a lopsided bowl with a contact scar on the outside surface - the key word is "I" since I will use that bowl for my own personal use. That is something that just happens sometimes. I feel lucky that it hasn't happened more often. The only other "unplanned result" had to do with the color of a glaze on a chip-n-dip I made special order. The person wanted a light blue piece with a glaze I have previously used for her, but it did not look very blue when I first glazed it. I sprayed it again and re-fired it, but this time it came out almost clear. It is actually a very nice looking piece, but just not blue. If she doesn't want it, I will try again - I know I can sell the original platter.

This was my first time glazing the red clay pieces and was really pleased with the results. Even the natural unglazed clay came out looking better than I thought it would - not really red, but a dark sandstone look. The turquoise looked very good - a little darker than on the lighter clay - and the tenmoku seemed a little more red.
The real surprise was the grayish look that the clear glaze took on the piece that was marbled with the red and white clay. The lines of the layers are still distinct, but it is more of white and gray layers instead of what I expected would be white and red.

As far as throwing pottery, what I could fit in or felt like doing after meetings all day, most of my time was spent on casseroles. I have had more inquiries lately via email about my work and this has resulted in some interest in casseroles I had previously made, but I did not have any "in stock" at the moment. So, in the process of trying to create a couple of casseroles to match a desired size, I have gotten the "casserole bug" and am looking at different sizes and different styles of baking dishes. I like creating pots that have lids, although it is oftentimes frustrating. But, it is great practice to work at it. More on that later.

Peace Out!

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