Gary Jackson: Fire When Ready Pottery
A Chicago potter’s somewhat slanted view of clay & play
Categories: flowers, friends, soda-fired, stamped, vases

Looks like my friend Tiffany made it outside to enjoy the beautiful sunny weather & some Spring flowers… well, she was still safely “sheltering-at-home” as brought her own flowers out to her front porch. A safe hangout spot with good distance from anyone… and a nice BYOV.

BYOV : Bring Your Own Vase…
which just so happens to have been made by you-know-who!!!

Categories: flowers, nature

Looks like Spring is finally making it’s way to Chicago.
I know times are tough, but you need to get outside for some fresh air
and to appreciate Nature’s beauty. Just be safe & socially distant.

Yesterday I went for a run, then a long walk with a friend and another run back home. Yes, it is weird to carry on a conversation with 8-feet of distance between you, but I felt SO MUCH better when I got home… both mentally & physically! Just be smart. Just be safe!

Categories: creativity, flowers, mosaic, nature

So yesterday while it was so BEAUTIFUL outside… and far too many idiots were flooding the lakefront without any social distance… I decided to go for a run in the other direction! Literally.

I went for a run out to the West Ridge Nature Preserve… a little unknown nugget of nature… with a couple beautiful mosaic pieces to welcome you in. Isolated enough to be totally safe for those of us still social distancing while we get out for some exercise on a beautiful day!

Categories: flowers, friends

While today was gloomy, gray & rainy… it was still the First Day of Spring!!! Nothing good going on outside… but luckily I have some beautiful African violets still blooming at home.

Thanks again to Nancy & Rick who gave me this plant during the holidays… and it hasn’t stopped blooming since!!! Guess it’s happy living in my dining room window???

Categories: flowers, handbuilding, porcelain

Apparently Spring has sprung… at least from these pretty little flowers that popped up in the kiln room! They’re from a sweet little workshop that Mary Drabik taught at Lillstreet. Yes, it’s warmer out today… but we’re still a ways away from cheery flowers like these!!! I’ll take ‘em wherever I can get ‘em!

Categories: classes, flowers, vases

So after tackling some basic handbuilding skills last week like rolling coils & throwing slabs, my THROWDOWN students were challenged to handbuild a decorative flower brick. It was so much fun to see them as they were “unveiled” from under their plastic wrappings. Each one was so amazing… and I loved seeing how each person interpreted the challenge, and designed their own version of a flower brick!

And what’s a proper flower brick without some flowers???…
so I brought in some fake flowers just to see how they looked in each person’s vase.

Sadly, I had two students who didn’t quite get to finish their pieces… one for a flu illness, and one for a family obligation. But the rest of them ROCKED IT OUT!!! They were so amazing… that we decided as a group that they were ALL WINNERS this week!!!

HELEN
We all loved the shape of Helen’s flower brick… and how it so perfectly splayed out the flowers. Along with textures & carved patterns… including textured straps across the top!

NORAH
A whimsical twist on the flower brick with a nod to a honeycomb.
Texturally “influenced” by one of my Stodola rolling pins!

TAYLOR
Our only wall vase… along with a removable lid that helps with cleaning!

JEN
A wonderfully textured vase with swirling rim-openings to help hold the flowers…
extra amazing as this was Jen’s first handbuilding project!!!

MOLLY
A textured square box with a removable lid for cleaning… and perfectly crafted flowers on the side. Plus, as I was taking these photos, I picked it up to move it over… and it was amazingly light!!! About half of the weight that I was expecting to lift up.

JACOB
A very smooth & groovy “flower power” brick on wheels!
NOW I see what all of that orange masking tape was used for…
to get the fine black lines detailing every side!

CHRISTINE
Such an amazingly clean & purposeful flower vase with a removable lid for cleaning purposes. A more than amazing entry from Christine… as this was her first handbuilding project… ever! I think she’s onto something!!!!

TRACY
With an amazingly colorful & fanciful patterned flower brick of terra cotta. And quite a few different decorative techniques layered & working together throughout all sides of the vase.

MELANIE
With a “quilted” basket look full of textures & patterns… and underglaze transfers.
Textures “courtesy of” my textured rolling pins from STODOLA!

So there they are… another AMAZING PROJECT that my students just KILLED!!!
This season’s group of Throwdown-ers is amazing!!!

Categories: flowers, garden

Almost a month… and not only have I not killed it yet, but it’s still blooming!!!!

Categories: flowers
Categories: art fair, flowers, friends, soda-fired

One of my wonderful customers brought me a gift African violet yesterday planted in one of my own flower pots! Apparently Rick propagates & grows these violets off of his mother’s original plants after she passed away. While her plants are now well over fifty years old, the violet’s beauty continues to be shared & spread through Rick’s ever-“growing” tribute. A beautiful combo… and a beautiful gesture. Thank you so much Rick & Nancy! I love it!!!

Categories: flowers, studio

Took a quick break from the sgraffito carving to replant a couple of my studio plants. They’re both doing so well, that they’ve outgrown the pots that they originally came in from my students Jen & Teresa. They were each in one of my classes where the final trading game was a handmade flowerpot with a plant to fit. I’ll need to put new plants in their pots… but if you need a flower pot for YOUR plants, you can get some of mine at my HOLIDAY HOME SHOW next weekend!!!