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

Looks like a beautiful breakfast in the making in Stevens Point. Flowers from the garden, a beautiful fruit salad and plenty of pottery to serve in style! Remember, homemade food always tastes better in handmade pottery!

Categories: bowls, craftsmanship, summer camp, surface decoration

Yesterday, one of my Summer Campers was so focused on finishing her wheelthrowing project, that she brought it upstairs to the rooftop to finish it during our lunch break. So while the other kids entertained themselves & played games… a lot of colored slip painting was happening to make her new ramen bowl more “authentic” with a branch of cherry blossoms painted on the side.

Categories: bowls, food

The perfect combination… beautiful homegrown blueberries & a handmade stamped & glazed bowl to hold them… and “frame” them perfectly! Thanks Jody for sharing your blueberry harvest with us!

Categories: bike, sunrise

Possibly the PERFECT morning! The weather today was simply perfection. It started out beautifully with a lot less humidity & some amazing colorful clouds. And that perfection continued all day long… which was the perfect reason to get back out on my bike AGAIN this afternoon after Summer Camp!

Categories: creativity, inspiration, platters

Always fun to get my “latest installation” of artsy postcards from The Postcard Club … this batch featuring some pretty sweet illustrations & motivational messages. A little something guaranteed to brighten someone’s day!

Click here for more about The Postcard Club subscription program.

Categories: summer camp

Getting dirty can be fun…
another great day of Summer Camp!
It’s a shame they’re not having more fun…

Categories: flowers, garden

These purple iris hung in there for a long time too. This patch of bearded purple iris are the very first ones I planted several years ago. They’ve been thriving & spreading as a consistent bloomer on the corner of my front garden. Yet sadly, they look like they’re almost done blooming now… until next year…

Categories: flowers, garden

Sadly, it looks like iris season has come to an end in my garden. These were the last few “troopers” to make an appearance this year. Especially loving the bi-color purple & yellow ones this year… so striking!!!

Categories: classes, process, surface decoration

In my SURFACE DECORATION class last session, we focused on a different technique each week. One of the projects was MISHIMA… a great technique for “illustrating” on your clay. Leaving fine-line illustrations or geometric lines on your pots.

Of course it helped a bit that I had made a batch of cylinders, trimmed them, and dried them to leather heard just for the demo. You know my students LOVE when I come to class with pre-made class demo pieces for them to work on!!!

After making a plan, my students started by painting a layer of wax resist over the entire outer surface. Once that was layer of wax was hard & no longer sticky, they started to carve through the wax, deep enough to carve into the clay was well. The idea being that the carved lines will be filled with a dark underglaze later… filling in the lines, but the wax will keep it off of the other areas. Some people just worked on a blank cylinder, while others painted an underglaze image first, and then painted the wax over the top of that.

Once they finished carving, they painted the top surface with an underglaze. Most people used black, by Christy decided to get a little “crazy” and went for yellow under glaze to “pop” off of her black painted cylinder.

After filling in all of the carved groove lines, we carefully washed off the top surface… revealing the picture as the underglaze remains in the carved crevasses.

We had some pretty amazing illustrations come out during this process. I love how the designs kinda “disappear” while carving, but then the underglaze filling the patterns makes them “pop”… and kinda looks like a carved wood print.

And who would have thought… that Christine’s carved mishima pattern would pretty much end up being a splittin’ image for my mask?!!!

Categories: inspiration, summer camp

Well, today was my first day of Summer Camp at Lillstreet Art Center. And my wheelthrowing campers are well under way, making pots & having fun… and especially succeeding with Gary’s Camp Rule #3 : “Whatever mess you make, you WILL be cleaning up.”

Now if we could just get the adult students to follow that same rule with such enthusiasm?!