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

Last week with my SURFACE DECORATION class, we discussed a lot of glazing techniques & tried to rectify some bad habits. Then I challenged them to “play” a bit more with their glazing… and to try some new techniques on the stamped cylinders I provided for them. I was hoping that they would be more free with their glazing if it wasn’t on one of their own “precious” pots. They all took good step-by-step notes… so now we’re just anxiously waiting for them to get fired in the cone 10 glaze kiln. Fingers crossed for some fun glaze results!!!

Categories: classes, glaze

All letter-code labeled & waxed… a fun “surprise “ project for my SURFACE DECORATION class tonight. They have no idea what they’re in for!!! If you haven’t guessed already… it’s Glaze Night!!!

Categories: glaze, process, production

Wiping off the top surface… to reveal a now-filled-in stamped pattern. Remember, these are all going into the soda kiln… so I don’t really need to glaze the outside of the pots. I’ll do a liner glaze inside… but leave the exterior for the soda magic to do its tricks!!!

Categories: glaze, process, production, stamped

Working on the glaze inlay first… filling the stamped impressions with some tenmoku glaze. And then I will be wiping off the top surface to clean it off… leaving the glaze only in the patterns!

Categories: glaze, process, production, stamped, vases

Still glazing… this time I’m on the pots that came out of yesterday’s bisque kiln. Cute little oval vases with a fun strappy handles to help separate the flowers. And if one handle is cute… maybe two handles are even cuter?!!! Larger version with two handles & textured panels on each side!

Categories: glaze, process, production, stamped

Moving right along! Filling the stamps with glaze & then wiping off the top surface with a wet sponge. It leaves the dark tenmoku glaze inside the stamp to really make the texture pop! Then a quick liner glaze with the same tenmoku… clean the edges with a wet sponge… and we’re almost done!!!

Categories: glaze, studio

Okay, so here’s the “weird clay & glaze issues” story!
So I made this year’s Shamrock Mugs with a new kind of clay… fresh from the manufacturer. No problems with it. So I glazed the bisqued mugs in a couple different shades of green glaze… that I have used many many times. The dark green glaze on the left came out perfect. The light green glaze on the right came out a bubbly, pock-marked & scratchy?! In the same kiln with the same light green glaze… I also fired some bowls made with a different clay body and they came out perfectly light green! So I’m thinking there’s got to be something about the new clay & this one glaze recipe “not playing well with each other”? Ugh… the glamorous life of a Potter?!

So… I did some strategic sanding & smoothing, and then sprayed a light layer of the darker green glaze that “worked so well” over it. Figured it would either help melt & seal it all together… or they would be ruined even more. I had nothing to lose.

Well, they came out of the kiln today… a little “mottled” looking and not quite shiny-smooth. But they are SO MUCH BETTER than the scatchy un-sellable ones I had before.

So… some of these “seconds” will be in the SHAMROCK MUG SALE tonight… clearly identified & with a good discount!!! Sale starts in just under two hours at 8:00pm central… only on my Facebook page!

Categories: glaze, holiday, process, production

The kiln is loaded & firing… with a LOT of new Christmas Trees for this weekend’s SECOND HOLIDAY HOME SHOW! It seemed like the ones with stars & holes were the big hit last time… so I made another large batch with holes & stars!!! It’s beginning to look a LOT like Christmas!!!

And if there are any left after this weekend’s HOME SHOW,
does anyone want a quickie online Facebook Sale?!
Is there a preference?… late Sunday night or early Monday morning???

Categories: glaze, holiday, process, production

A little early morning glazing session. Working on the newest batch of Christmas trees for next weekend’s SECOND HOLIDAY HOME SHOW! Trying to replenish the shelves for those missed-out the first time!!!

Categories: color, glaze, holiday

Lots of colors, lots of patterns…
close-up details of some Christmas Trees fresh from the kiln!