Gary Jackson: Fire When Ready Pottery
A Chicago potter’s somewhat slanted view of clay & play
Categories: art fair, family, photography, Taylor

My niece Taylor came out to help at ART IN THE BARN both days.
She’s a great booth assistant, and apparently a blossoming “marketing director” in the making… with her own Instagram collage post to her friends & followers.
Always thinking, always helping.





Categories: family, food, stamped

While I sadly consider the “berry season” pretty much over at this point, it is good to know that cherry tomatoes need to be rinsed as well. Thanks to my Cousin David for sharing his bountiful harvest in one of my handmade berry bowls.

Categories: family, Mom & Dad

So my Mom has added two more new Handmade Pottery Aprons into her inventory. If you’re interested in seeing the available patterns and full purchase details, click here… or go to the Page on the website in the top right corner for Handmade Pottery Aprons!¬† They’re always first come, first served. And they’re one-of-a-kind, so when they’re gone they’re gone! To claim your apron, go to the blog link and follow the purchasing instructions there.

For a quick peek at the two new ones.
A beautiful striped one of blues, browns & whites…

And an eclectic mix of lime & blue patterns materials… I LOVE this one… so fun!!!



Categories: family, friends, holiday

With historic Route 66 running right through town, I had a very relaxing day hanging out for the Fourth with my college friends and their ten kids in Central Illinois! Lots of kids, lots of fun… my “adopted” family in Chenoa. Very homespun with a wonderful fireworks show to top off the festivities!

And my buddy Ryann who really enjoyed the parade… especially collecting all of the candy that was being thrown out along the route! And yes, she’s the youngest of the ten kids!!!



Categories: bowls, family, food, stamped

So fun to see my pottery in use… this time it’s my cousin Kim gathering sour cherries! They look amazing together. I told her that the only way they would look better is as a PIE!!! And better still… she already has a handmade ceramic pie dish to bake them in. Bring it on Kim… you bring the pie, I’ll bring the ice cream!!!




Categories: family, sunset, Taylor

A wonderful day of “playing hooky” at Six Flags Great America yesterday with my “family four pass.” We got season passes this year so we can play all summer!!! Roller coasters, water rides & cotton candy… and the new JOKER… oh my.

Yes, THE JOKER was our first ride of the day. It’s the newest roller coaster at Great America. I t may not look all that cool in still photos… but… what you can’t see is that the seats are actually flipping around while you’re sitting in them zooming & down the track. Much of the time you have no idea of which side is up!!!

To see more about the newest roller coaster THE JOKER, click here for the teaser video.

Never too early for cotton candy… luckily for us, my cousin Kim was willing to share!

A quick ride on The Viper… one of Taylor’s favorites!!! A great wooden roller coaster with lots of hills & bumps…. lots of flying out of your seat!!! Which I love!!!

Next up for me and Kim… Vertical Velocity. A quick twist up one end, and straight up the other. Not big hill to ride up and ride down… just magnetic propulsion sending you soaring up into the sky. Needless to say, Jen & Taylor decided to sit this one out.

While waiting for Logger’s Run… we saw momma robin had set-up her nest right above the the roaring rapids of the water ride. Not too calm or serene… but she sure seemed to like her vantage point.

After the ride, we were a little drenched… but happy!
Ready to move on to another roller coaster to help us dry out a bit!!!

As our day of roller coasters, water rides and snacks continued into the late afternoon, the sun began to set creating some great views & vantage points.

All of a sudden, the sunset turned the sky ablaze with colors. Creating a beautiful sky show creating a wonderful sky show with the roller coaster silhouettes.

All too soon, our day at Great America had come to an end. A wonderful day, beautiful weather and so much fun with Taylor, Jen & Kim!!! And luckily, we have our season passes… so more fun to come!!!



Categories: family, pottery, studio

My Mom has been busy making pottery aprons again!!!
She has six of them ready to go. They’ve been custom-designed for potters… long enough to cover your thighs with a split to open when you sit at the wheel. The straps go over your shoulders instead of around your neck. And there are three button adjustments to change the height & width. So click on the link to see the current inventory… and thank you Greg for always being the perfect model!!!

Here’s a quick peek of the six that are currently available at the time of posting.
Please click on the “Handmade Pottery Aprons” LINK in the top far right column to see the actual “current” inventory… as well as more details and purchase information.

Or… click here to go straight to my Mom’s Pottery Apron page on my blog.





Categories: family, friends

Looks like little Rosie really enjoyed putting together her jigsaw puzzle today…
one of a VERY limited edition of “prototype” puzzles!
Maybe there will be more to come???


Categories: creativity, family, food

A slightly delayed Christmas gift from my cousins in Minnesota. Looks like they know me a little TOO well!!! Sadly though, Caroline, my Girl Scout cookie connection, has decided not to sell cookies this year. What?! Say it isn’t so… I might need a new hook-up. I’m jones’n already!!!


Categories: family, special events, Taylor

Sure, it’s freezing cold outside today… but the summer memories are still warm!
So here’s another summer flashback!!!

We started our day (back in August) at Six Flags Great America… and of course we had to start on a roller coaster! Taylor may have been a little cautious at first, but that didn’t last long…

Then we were off to my favorite… The Raging Bull.

After our first couple roller coasters, we played Whack-A-Mole… and I WON!!!
But the best part was that we ALL won colorful character baseball hats!!!
We looked gangsta’s in the hood of Nickelodeon!

More spinning… more squealing… more giggling…

Of course we had to take a cotton candy break… it is Great America after all.
And who doesn’t like a little more sugar to keep everyone amp’d up?!!!

More roller coasters… more fun… this time back on The Viper!!!

Seems like it was all coasters all the time… including the X-Flight!!!

Taylor was great at most of the roller coasters… although she drew the line at Vertical Velocity. I had to do that one with my cousin Kim while Jen & Taylor did the flying swings a couple times. In hind sight, the swings may have been better for Kim too… she was a bit queasy after this one! Magnetic jet-propulsion, twisting and flying straight up might not be her thing?!

All too soon, the sun started to set and our day was drawing to an end. The park takes on a whole new look as the sun goes down and the park lights begin to turn on.

It may have been sunset, but we still had time for a few more rides. Including another ride on Taylor’s favorite The Viper. Which looks so much cooler with the silhouettes of sunset.

Darkness was falling quick and we had time for one last ride… Spinning & swinging on The Revolution. So much fun… especially in the dark when all the lights are blurring, spinning and sparkling. A fitting end to our wonderful day at Great America… oh wait, that might have been the funnel cakes ala mode with hot fudge that we had just before leaving the park?!!!