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

Typically I feel that food always tastes better when served in handmade pottery… or at least “looks better” in pottery. But this time?… not so sure?! I’m glad it’s in one of my bowls, but personally not a fan of liver & onions! Thanks for trying though Kristy… hope YOU guys enjoyed it!!!

Categories: platters, process, production, stamped, stamps, textures

So I did a plate-throwing demo in class this week… but who wants a “plain” dinner plate?! Not me… more is more, right?! So I just did a bit of stamping to make it a bit more fun… all done with one handmade clay stamp pressed in one-by-one-by-one-by-one!

Categories: art fair, artists, My Talented Friends, sculpture

So last night I was part of a great ZOOM call… FOUR MAKERS making plans for a fun “sculpture show” coming up next Spring in Evanston, Illinois. I will be joining three of “My Talented Friends” for a show on March 3rd, 4th & 5th, 2023. We’re planning a great show with artwork & collaborations by metalsmith Sarah Chapman, metal sculptor Darlys Ewoldt & glass fuser Robin Kittleson. Not quite sure yet what I’ll be making for a “sculpture” show… but you know how I LOVE a good challenge! Mark your calendars now!

Categories: artists, clay, collaborations, handbuilding, wheelthrowing

So I had a little “summer camp” situation in my studio over the summer. My friend Kristen asked if her kids could stop by for a little “private” summer camp experience in my studio. I’ve known the kids forever… so of course I said yes. Although I haven’t really done much with them since they took my Lillstreet Chess Camp a couple years back.

We started with some wheelthrowing lessons, and then they each gave it a try. AJ went first, followed by Lizzy. I think they were both a little surprised that it wasn’t quite as easy as it looks!

But then I also “flipped the script” a bit on them… and told them they would have a handbuilding project as well. They thought they would be able to make whatever they wanted…. but, oh no, that’s not how I play!

I think they had all kinda forgotten about a little drawing that AJ had done back when he was in second grade. He was trying to raise money to buy himself a new set of LEGO’s… and his mom Kristen set-up a little gallery show for him to show-off his artwork. I purchased this drawing at that gallery show… and have had it in my studio ever since.

So I pulled it out… and challenged them each to make a handbuilt “cup” that was “inspired” by AJ’s monster drawing from so many years ago.

On their next visit, they trimmed their wheelthrown pieces, and finished working on their handbuilt monster cups. The final touches were put on with some colored underglazes. Once they dry, I will bisque fire the monster cups and glazed them with a clear glaze. Their wheelthrown pots will be glazed as well… to match their color choices of course!

As you can see, Lizzy went for a more literal approach in building her cup. I especially liked her use of textures to mimic the patterns in the drawing. While AJ went a little off on his own “version” of the monster… with a great triple-eye & vertical mouth situation!

So much fun playing with these kids… they were so much fun. Glad we could work out this Mini Summer Camp this summer… two days of clay fun in my studio with AJ & Lizzy!

Categories: holiday, The Ghouls Collection

It’s getting spooky out there… as another “Ghouls Collection” is making its annual appearance out in the ‘burbs! My friend Chris has quite a collection of my Halloween Ghouls… but seems to be missing two of them! She apparently missed out on the Limited Edition twice?!

Can anyone guess which two Ghouls she’s missing?!!!

And if you’ve got a nice collection of my Ghouls, please send me a photo so I can post yours here too! Thanks…

Categories: textures

Sure, rusty metal is always my favorite… but weathered wood is a close second. Especially when celebrating another TEXTURE TUESDAY!

Categories: artists, sunrise

So funny… who’da thunk that my little “morning sunrise addiction” would become an inspiration to someone else! Recently the Glenview Art League hosted a show for its members… encouraging them to do a painting on a 6″x 6″ canvas. Painter Sandy Sheagren used one of my sunrise photos as the visual reference for her entry in the show… so glad I could help Sandy! It looks beautiful!

Categories: flowers, food, friends, pottery

My friends Keith & Julie recently moved for central Illinois to Ohio… and it looks like they finally got around to unboxing some of their pottery collection! What better way to “feel at home” than with a freshly-baked pineapple upside-down cake, fresh-cut roses from the garden & the warmth of a candle… and some of my stamped pottery to pull it all together!

Categories: family, flower pots, flowers

Looks my cousin David’s anthurium is enjoying its new home in a pretty stamped & purple flower pot! David surprised me at ART IN THE GARDEN by coming to the show with his Mom & Sister… my Aunt Marilyn & cousin Kim… even though he lives in Ohio!!! SURPRISE!!!

Categories: bike, sunrise

Another morning ride surrounded by crazy-cool splashing waves everywhere. I love when the morning sun catches the wave just right and kinda “illuminates” the splash!!! Timing is everything!!!