Gary Jackson: Fire When Ready Pottery
A Chicago potter’s somewhat slanted view of clay & play
Categories: art fair, glaze, kiln firing

Tonight I loaded more pots into a cone 10 glaze kiln.
Marian, one of my studio neighbors, is firing a kiln of her work for the
upcoming 57th Street Art Fair. Lucky for me, she didn’t have enough work
to fill the kiln… so I was once again “Kiln Filler.” I glazed up some more bisqued
work to load in, as well as some of my normal kiln filler tiles & rattles.

Unfortunately, the kiln won’t be unloaded in time for the Schaumburg Art Fair
this weekend… but they will be ready & on their way to Hinsdale!

Categories: bike, sunrise

The morning sky was very rosy this morning with clouds on the horizon
that almost seemed to glow early on…

And then, as the sun finally made it over the horizon, the pink dissipated
and the clouds became dramatic wisps across the sky!

Categories: nature, studio

Well, it seems like Summer may have finally made it to Chicago “for real” this time?!
And with it so sunny outside today, I felt it was a great day to bring some “sunshine”
into the studio with some new flowers. And by “new” I mean “new to my studio”…
not really new. I’m just “repurposing” them from a glitter gig again!

Categories: artists, inspiration, pottery

Thanks for playing… and for guessing the names of some of the potters
who share their talents during the St. Croix River Valley Pottery Tour!
In case you were wondering…

Here are the 20 potters who I thought had really cool patterns & textures!
And if you noticed, they’ve been in alphabetical order just to make it easier for you.

Potter #1 –  Mary Barringer, Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts

Potter #2 –  Bob Briscoe, Harris, Minnesota

Potter #3 –  Linda Christiansonm Lindstrom, Minnesota

Potter #4 –  Delores Fortuna, Galena, illinois

Potter #5 –  Steven Hill, Independence, Missouri

Potter #6 –  Michael Hunt & Naomi Dalglish, Bakersville, North Carolina

Potter #7 –  Karin Kraemer, Superior, Wisconsin

Potter #8 –  Simon Levin, Gresham, Wisconsin

Potter #9 –  Suze Lindsay, Bakersville, North Carolina

Potter #10 – George Lowe, Decorah, Iowa

Potter #11 –  Kent McLaughlin, Bakersville, North Carolina

Potter #12 –  Jenny Mendes, Chesterland, Ohio

Potter #13 –  Matthew Metz, Alfred Station, New York

Potter #14 –  Donna Polseno, Floyd, Virginia

Potter #15 – Ellen Shankin, Floyd, Virginia

Potter #16 –  Mark Shapiro, Worthington, Massachusetts

Potter #17 – Sam Taylor, Westhampton, Massachusetts

Potter #18 –  Shoko Teruyama, Marshall, North Carolina

Potter #19 – Tom Turner, Mars Hill, North Carolina

Potter #20 –  Richard Vincent, North Branch, Minnesota

So mark your calendar for next year’s tour… it’s always on Mother’s Day Weekend.
You’ll be glad you did. And you’ll see a LOT more incredible work by more than just
the twenty potters I featured here in my little game!


Categories: art fair, Mom & Dad, process

It’s just a few days before the Schaumburg Prairie Fine Arts Festival…
and surprisingly, I’m already packed up and ready to go… almost!
I still have a lot of “busy-work” to do before then… but the tough part is done!

We cleaned, organized, priced and packed up a lot of new pots fresh out of the kiln.
And with the Hinsdale Fine Arts Fair just two weeks after Schaumburg, there’s not
enough time in between to make a new batch of work, fire & glaze… so we packed
for both shows at the same time. Luckily, I made enough pots over the past few months
to give us a full inventory for both shows! So there will be a different assortment of pots
in Schaumburg than there will be in Hinsdale! Come to both shows to see everything!

Schaumburg Prairie Fine Arts Festival – May 26th & 27th, 2012
Hinsdale Fine Arts Fair – June 9th & 10th, 2012

But here’s the funny part… while we were packing the pots, my Mom got “caught”
by a piece of pottery! She was wearing a shirt that had a lace-up neckline and the laces
had a metal aglet at the end. Apparently, the piece of metal somehow got “wedged”
on between the flower pot and the connected water dish. She walked around for a
couple minutes trying to get un-hooked! Of course I had to laugh & take a picture
BEFORE I could help her get it undone!

Categories: art fair, pottery

I’m ready to kick-off the Summer Art Fair season starting this weekend!
It’s been a busy Spring in the studio over the past few months…
making lots of new pieces, glazing & firing to replenish the inventory with new pots!
Including some new pieces I’ve never made before! Click on Preview.

Schaumburg Prairie Fine Arts Festival
Saturday, May 26th, 2012 – 10:00am-6:00pm
Sunday, May 27th, 2012 – 10:0am-5:00pm
Robert O. Atcher Municipal Center, 201 Schaumburg Court in Schaumburg, Illinois.

All of my pieces are already priced, packed and ready to go…
and with the Hinsdale Art Fair just two weeks later, I’ve already split the inventory
for the two shows. So each show will have a completely different assortment of work.
Come to both and see two different assortments! Now that’s a LOT of pots!!!

I hope to see you this weekend in Schaumburg… and bring a friend!
Or better yet, bring five friends! We’re all hoping the weather is better
han last year when we got flooded out of the park!

Remember, you can always follow what’s going on with quick updates on Facebook.
Click the link below to get to my Facebook pottery page – and then click the LIKE button.

Categories: bike, sunrise

Another simple bike ride… with another simple sunrise!

Categories: garden, inspiration, nature, photography
Categories: bike, friends, GeoCache

Okay, so I was biking with my friend Chris up to the Chicago Botanic Garden
again this afternoon. And as we were pedaling along, Chris was describing
GeoCaching. I had heard about i many years ago when you needed to purchase
a GPS unit to participate in the scavenger hunt fun. It never crossed my mind
that my iPhone could do it too… you know, there’s an App for that!

Basically, the idea of GeoCaching is that you use the GPS to find small little “treasures”
that people have hidden around the world. You find the coordinates of any “treasure”
located in your vicinity. They give you maps, directions and clues to help you find them.
So of course, we had to give it a try!

So Chris and I were pedaling along and with the GeoCaching App running on Chris’ phone.
We were watching the moving dots, the bleeping on the screen, until we were close to one.
We rode past it. We went back. Until we realized that we had to park our bikes and go for a
short hike – straight into the woods!!! Into the thick of things looking for who knows what?!
The dots overlapped on the GPS so we knew we were close. We started looking everywhere.
For what, we don’t know?! It seemed impossible.

But then I channeled my best Russell Hantz and questioned “What would I do on ‘Survivor’
to find the Hidden Immunity Idol?” So I started to deduce where it could be. It had to be in,
on, or around something. It would never be just sitting there on the ground, right?!
Touching. Reaching. Flipping. Searching… and coming up with nothing.

And then, I saw this odd tree stump just sitting there. And it moved when I kicked it.

So I picked it up and found that there was a hole drilled in the bottom of it.
And stuck into that hole was a small canister. I pulled it out and found a small scroll inside.
Apparently, you’re supposed to sign it, add the date, and put it back into the canister.
Then, you need to replace the canister so that the next person can find it in the same place.
Apparently, some of the “treasures” are things you actually get to keep?! We’ll see…

I must admit it was a lot more exciting than I expected. The pursuit. The adventure.
The thrill of finally finding it. Sadly, we didn’t have a pen with us so we couldn’t sign it?!
We plan to stop by the next time we’re riding up that way… because yes, we’re dorks!

So I’ve now downloaded the App to my iPhone too. And looking froward to getting started
to see where the next “treasure” might be. And of course, I immediately questioned how I
could possibly turn it into a marketing possibility for me?! I could make my own “treasure”
location for others to find… maybe in my studio?… at an art fair?… by the totem pole
in my front yard? Haven’t quite figured that out yet. But I’m still working on it.

Until then… back to be ing a dork and searching for more “treasures”!
For more information, click on

Categories: nature, sunset

As I was getting ready to head home, I stopped for gas and a grape pop… my favorite!
When I turned around there was an incredible sunset coming together on the airport’s horizon.
There was a huge storm coming through – and it looked like it was going to open up any
minute! Kinda looks like a scene out of “Wizard Of Oz”… before it turns to full color!