Gary Jackson: Fire When Ready Pottery
A Chicago potter’s somewhat slanted view of clay & play
Categories: mugs, process, production

So my latest batch of stamped cylinders are ready to become mugs!
We need some handles first… so I start with some wedged and shaped “carrots” of clay.

I pull my handles separate from the cup. Starting with the wide end of the “carrot” in your fingers tips, I gently slide down the clay with wat hands a bit of fiction. A little more friction and the clay begins to stretch into a handle. I like mine to be more of a strap than a tube. They need to set-up a bit before they can be attached to the mugs. So I carefully prop mine up with a nice “mug handle curve” already established. When they are no longer wet & squishy, I start attaching them.

Score, slip, attach, refine… REPEAT.
Score, slip, attach, refine… REPEAT.
Score, slip, attach, refine… REPEAT… REPEAT… REPEAT…         did I say REPEAT???

Soon enough I’ve got a LOT of mugs!!! My favorite thing to make.

Next up?… some color accents with flashing slips painted on the top portions and in some of the stamps.

Categories: bike, sunrise

After a big race weekend, it felt good to get up this morning for a more leisurely ride. Great for working out the kinks & lactic acid stiffness. A beautifully quiet sunrise.


Categories: stamped, textures, tiles

After a big race day, it was fun to relax in the studio tonight stamping some mugs and making some more textured tiles.

Categories: bike, special events

Races run. Finish Lines crossed. The Chicago Triathlon Triple Challenge complete.

Now I’ve got a lot of sweaty clothes & smelly shoes!
Double the stink from two races today back-to-back!

Bringing home the hardware! Three triathlon race distances in two days!
Three races. Three medals.

A beautiful day in Chicago… just wanted to check that the medal was real.
Just like a real Olympian!



Categories: mugs, process, production, stamped

Two dozen cylinders in need of some stamping. Luckily, I have several tool boxes full of stamps… and some time this afternoon to do some texturing. So here we have some cylinders before & after… each destined to become a mug after trimming & handles!



Categories: art fair, friends, My Talented Friends

Hanging out with my friend & brilliant metalsmith Sarah Chapman at the Bucktown Arts Fest. Diggin’ her new bracelets… which I lovingly dubbed “a bangle with a dangle.” Stop by today until 7:00pm… or again tomorrow from 11:00am-7:00pm!!! Booth 178 on Lyndale.



Categories: bike, special events, workout

Thankfully the huge rains passed before the race started.
Although there were a LOT of puddles & mud in the aftermath.
More fun tomorrow… and hopefully better weather?!

Categories: clay, process, production

Starting to wonder if it was smart to throw tonight, or if I should be home relaxing, carbo-loading and preparing for tomorrow’s race?!

Categories: art fair, artists, friends

Eight “talented friends” hanging out in the garden. A smaller, more intimate grassroots art fair. This is our third year hosted by my friend & metalsmith Amy Taylor. A great alternative to the mega-art fairs that can be a bit overwhelming. Easier to shop, chat with the artists, or just hang out and relax in Amy’s garden!



Categories: Chicago, photography, sunrise

Big sky show this morning. Incredible colors sweeping across the horizon all along the Lakefront. It only lasted a few minutes… but each one was better than the last.