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

Just a little something to brighten your rainy day! This is crazy cool… and amazing how LONG this train track must be to make this happen! A Guinness World Record!!! The amount of time & creativity it took to do this is astounding! Looks like the rest of the miniature trains, planes & locations are pretty amazing too!!!

But my real question… what happens when the melody starts to sound a little “flat” from evaporation?… how long do you think it takes top “top ’em off” and do they have a professional water glass tuner on staff???

Categories: creativity, handbuilding, process, production

Last night in my Intermediate Wheelthrowing class, we did a little “exchanging-trading-stealing” game… and the theme was FLOWER POTS with a plant inside! We all had a great time sharing our flowerpots & plants. And THEN… Christine pulled out another bag all wrapped up for ME!!! What?!… A late entry into the “sharing game” just for me?!

And it turned out to be this AMAZING cookie creation!!! Sure, she might just know a little somethin’-somethin’ about my OREO addiction?!

Christine is fairly new to the handbuilding… with this being only her SECOND handbuilding project ever. Never one to shy away from a good challenge, Christine took it upon herself to build this amazing flower pot! Even better – working at her new make-shift pottery studio workspace at home in her kitchen! Recently pulled together due to the pandemic restrictions and her ever-growing addiction to clay!

So here’s a little step-by-step process story for you… with special THANKS to Christine for sharing all of her process photos!

It looks like Christine started by enlarging the famous OREO pattern embossed on the cookies… and then cut them out to use them as templates & stencils for the project.

Using the patterns, Christine cut out the logo from a slab of clay. Funny thing… I was right there while Christine was rolling out her slabs on the Lillstreet slab roller.. and had no idea what she was working on! And then she continued to cut out all of the other parts & pieces. Good thing Christine has a nice “damp box” at home to store all of these pieces as she’s working on them.

Using the original stencils, Christine then transferred the pattern onto the large “cookie” circle disc of slab clay. This process makes it a LOT easier to places the pieces later.

After a LOT of scoring & slipping… the textured & embossed “cookie” was coming along nicely… still waiting for the decorative border of little rectangles. A lot of them!!!

So here are the two oversized “cookies” just waiting for the cream filling… the “container” portion of the flower pot!!!

The flower pot portion was created out of slabs as well… looks like this one might be TRIPLE STUFFED!!!

With a little chunk of sponge to support the cookie walls, the flower pot was assembled and allowed to stiffen up without sagging.

Christine then added some slabs to the bottom as “feet” for the flower pot to stand on… and NOT roll around like a cookie on its side!

While the flower pot was setting up, Christine made a small water trip tray to fit under the flowerpot.

When both pieces were finally dried, they were bisque-fired… bringing out the “traditional” terra cotta coloring we all love!

And then a couple coats of underglaze to give it that special OREO cookie color!!!

But then the triple-stuffed “filling” needed to be painted with white underglaze… using green tape to make nice clean lines between the colors.

All coming together… looking more & more like an OREO cookie!!!

And then a couple layers of glazed sprayed on to give it some shine.

And then it was ready to go back into the kiln for the glaze firing. Huge thanks to Dave Trost for being Christine’s “cohort-in-crime” – helping to facilitate this covert project. Apparently there was a lot of hiding & stashing of this piece so that I wouldn’t happen upon it ruining the surprise. A lot was going on around me… and I had NO IDEA!!!

After the glaze firing, it looked great. Christine apologized a bit for the coloring… bringing up that they have made Blueberry OREOS in the past!!! Sure, the traditional dark brown OREO might have been nice, but the blue hue makes it a bit more fun & magical.

Such a wonderful surprise by one of My Talented Students!!!
THANK YOU AGAIN CHRISTINE!!!

Categories: creativity, special events, television

Even the portraits were made out of LEGOs!!! So much work. So much creativity… so many flashback memories of FRIENDS. I kinda think I need to go back and re-watch every episode from the beginning again!!!

So who is YOUR favorite FRIEND… and why?!

Let the binge begin… “Could that BE any more fun???”

Categories: creativity, special events, television

My favorite part of the THE FRIENDS EXPERIENCE yesterday was the full-blown replica of Central Perk… all made out of LEGO’s!!! Fully interactive with all the furniture, details, colors & props you remember and want to play with for your photo-ops! So much fun… and SO MANY LEGOS!!!

Categories: creativity, lillstreet

So this adorable creature just showed up on the Lillsttreet Show-Off Shelves… and I’m thinking he might need to be nominated for a new Lillstreet Mascot – just sayin’!!! Loving his punky attitude! Well done Heather!!!

Categories: color, creativity, process

The sun is shining again… the ice is melting again… and inside I’m ice-dyeing more t-shirts AGAIN! More colorful “magic” happening while the ice melts and the colors seep into the shirts!

Categories: creativity, process, production

Here’s my February entry in the 2021 Chain Challenge set-up by my talented metalsmith friend Sarah Chapman. Sure, it may not be traditional “links” like a metalsmith’s chain might be… but I think this still works! It’s a 36″ necklace chain of soda-fired beads, turquoise rondelles & copper wire.

Categories: creativity, food, music, television, YouTube

So this happened in the studio tonight…
a little bit of CHROMATICA with Lady Gaga OREO’s!!!

Kinda fun… but a little weird if I must say. They’re not a strange flavor, just strange colors… kind of flamingo-pink cookies with an oddly kelly green creme filling??? Pretty much the basic golden-vanilla flavor, yet a bit “thicker & crunchier” than normal OREOs??? I think I expected a little more from these “Little Monsters”!!!

But they did remind me of another great Carpool Karaoke with James Corden & Lady Gaga! Watch the YouTube video for a little Friday Night Dance Party… while driving in a van?!

Click here for the YouTube video!

Categories: creativity

A little Saturday sitcom humor…
for those of you old enough to remember…

Categories: artists, creativity, sculpture

And I know I said I was “done” with the Bernie memes!
But then THIS happened… and I just couldn’t resist!

Apparently there’s a snow sculptor named Jef Schobert
up in Stevens Point, Wisconsin isn’t done with him either!!!
Bring it on BRRR-nie!!!