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

Tonight was another night of glazing fun.
Which I must admit is my least favorite part of the whole process.
But I digress…

So here’s a glimpse into the “fun” I had tonight while I was glazing the textured tile pillows.
So here they are “Before”… fresh out of the bisque kiln.

“During”… when I had coated the tops with a layer of temoku glaze.

And then a gentle wipe with damp sponge to clean off the “high points” and allow the glaze to stay in the indentations.

“After”… and now you can see how the inlaid glaze really helps “pop” the stamped patterns & impressions.

The “constellation” group looks pretty fun… and then there’s details of them too…

Categories: nature, seasons, sunrise
Categories: bike, sunrise

It was hard to tell if they were coming or going. I could tell that it had rained overnight, but the clouds appeared to be a window of opportunity for a quick morning ride. Soon enough they were rolling in. Not quite sure if the sun would make it through or not. My ride home was getting cloudier… and grayer… Luckily, the sunrise did make an appearance… and then pretty much disappeared for the rest of the day!

Categories: glaze, production, tiles

Just as I thought I might be getting somewhere with my glazing…
I unloaded another kiln and now have a LOT more bisque to keep working on!!!
SO it almost seems like I have more bisque NOW than before I started?! Two steps back…

And not only will the tiles get glazed… but they also need a little ball of wadding glued on the bottom of every single one of them!!! Ah yes, the glamorous side of soda firing…

Categories: clay

Tonight during class, we tackled making lidded jars!
I showed them how I like to make my lids by throwing off the hump. So we made a  couple lids… and then continued to make more “shapes” off-the-hump while I still had clay there. A couple bowls… a couple shot glasses… a couple bud vases… and then the challenge kicked in. They wanted smaller… and smaller… and smaller…

And I think I may have just thrown the smallest vase I’ve EVER made!!!

So now I’m going to need the smallest stamp ever too, right?!!!

Categories: glaze, process, production

So I’ve stirred ’em up and the glazing has begun.
Trying to be efficient & methodical to get it all done quickly.
Inlaying some glaze into the stamped impressions. And a simple liner glaze.
Unfortunately, I had to stop to go downstairs to teach class… so it’ll more glazing tomorrow!!!

Categories: glaze, process, production

With another kiln firing… it’s time to tackle all of the bisque that has been piling up. I’ve been busy making a lot of “stuff.” Now it’s time to get some glazing done… as I need to load the soda kiln on Friday night so I can fire this Saturday!!! Yikes… time to get my glaze on!!!

Categories: kiln firing, process, production

It’s always tough to do a second bisque kiln so close to the one before. Generally not enough small pieces to fit in all the small places. I made a few more tiles, and that last batch of mini vases… but still, I would have liked to have more to squeeze in here!

Kiln Layer #1 – textured wall pillows, tiles and two large porcelain platters by my studio neighbor Karen Patinkin.

Kiln Layer #2 – a few stacked bowls, textured wall pillows, mini vases & tiles.

Kiln Layer #3 – a partial layer… with textured wall pillows, mini’s and more tiles.

Kiln Layer #3-1/2 – another partial layer of taller pieces… the textured slab vases I made this weekend. Which aren’t quite dry yet… but I’m putting them in upside down so the damp bottoms aren’t flat on the shelves. More room for air flow, evaporation & drying this way. I think.

Still a few damp pieces in there… but they won’t be for long! Preheat already on…


Categories: production

I LOVE KILN FILLER !!!… especially when they’re as cute as these mini vases!!!

So the batch of mini’s I threw yesterday have now been trimmed and accented with colored flashing slips. Now to get them dry before tomorrow’s bisque kiln.

Categories: production, textures

Yesterday I made four textured slab vases. With days counting down to my soda kiln next weekend. I only have a few days left… and I’ve decided that yesterday had to be my last day to work wet. That is if I have any hope of finishing them and getting them at all close to dry in time for Monday’s bisque kiln. So today I added some colored slip to the four vases… and for the first time, I used soda clay on one side, and stoneware with iron on the other. I’ve always made them with a different pattern on each side… this time they’re different clay too. Let’s hope it works…