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

Adding handles. Making mugs… one of a kind one at a time!
A quick baker’s dozen… plus one!

Can’t think of a clever phrase for fourteen of something. Can you?

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Categories: classes, creativity, lillstreet, mugs, seasons

So it’s another week of The Great Lillstreet Throwdown!
And another challenge… turning their four matching mugs into The Four Seasons!

So my students brought their “greenware finished” sets of mugs to class.
They set them out for all to see… and for our special Guest Judge Sam Hostert to come in
and award them points for their efforts. Thanks to Jon for some of these beautiful photos!

It was so much fun to see how everyone approached the challenge. How to depict the Four Seasons on four mugs???… illustrative? narrative? literal? figurative? symbolically?… so many options. And only four mugs!!!

So here are the sets of mugs… in no particular order…

The Four Seasons depicted with a tree through the seasons… and a special surprise on the bottom of each mug.

A seasonally-appropriate bug on the bottom of each mug!!!

Abstract brushwork showing the color palette of the seasons… winter, spring, summer & fall.

Straight forward and quite literally… spelling it out clearly for all to see…

The phases of a lant through the season… carved & inlaid illustrations in black with color-coded interiors to help show the season. Didn’t quite make first place… but “not-so-secretly” this one was my favorite set!!!

High-contrast black & white… porcelain & black slip depicting the sunlight cycle throughout the year… shown in the amount of white “sun” in relation to the black “night”. As an added bonus… a brief explanation carved on the bottom of each mug.

The seasons as seen on a mountain top… and something to do with a “mountain meditation” too.

Sponge-painted underglazes to show the change of colors for the change of seasons.

Another tree changing through the season… snow, flowers, leaves & fall foliage.

An erudite entry… the Four Seasons as seen through alchemical symbols.

Graphic contrast in black & white symbolizing day & night through the year…
and a brilliant surprise on the bottom of each cup.

Graphic symbolism for the moon & sun attached to the sides of this set.

No one specified “which” four seasons were to represented…
so this set went more for the activities of the seasons!

And unfortunately, this entry didn’t quite work. There was a last minute attempt at applying a cut-out stencil on the side, them paingint the darker slip color over the stencil -a nd then pulling it out. Apparently in the rush to make the deadline, the stencils didn’t quite get pulled out cleanly… something stuck… something didn’t… and in the last moment she decided to paint them over and call it done. Valiant effort.

So for now, the mugs are done. They can go off to the bisque firing and then get glazed. No more challenges for these mugs… but I did ask my students to bring them back to class when they’re finished just so we can see them!

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Categories: mugs, soda-fired, stamped

Mug… Stamped… Soda-fired…
three of my favorite things for another Mugshot Monday.

Categories: classes, mugs, process

Last night in our Pottery Throwdown Challenge class, my students were tasked with trimming and adding matching handles to four matching cylinders in ninety minutes. Sounds like a lot of time, but it went right down to the wire! It was great fun to watch how they processed, produced, prioritized and approached the challenge. A matching set of four mugs compared, judged & points awarded as the coolest clay contest continues… and these mugs are NOT done yet!!!

Special thanks to Fred for (eating our cookies and…) being our special Guest Judge last night for the matching handles challenge!

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Categories: mugs, production

It’s Mugshot Monday again…
and by now you should know mugs are MY FAVORITE!!!

Categories: classes, mugs, stamps

Last night was only the second class of the new session for my Beginners…
and they’ve already thrown, trimmed and made mugs!!!!…
oh yeah, and a couple new stamps just for fun!

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Categories: mugs, porcelain, soda-fired, stamped

Pretty little porcelain… stamped & soda-fired mugs for Mugshot Monday!

Categories: mugs, soda-fired, textures

Caught by the teeniest sliver of sun through dining room blinds.
Slab-Wheel Combo Mugs ready & waiting for this Saturday’s Holiday Home Show!!!

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Categories: art fair, mugs

Well, it’s 7:00am…
and what better way to kick-off St. Nick’s Day than with an Online Mug Sale?!

So the annual online sale just started on my Facebook pottery page.
Click here and grab a mug or two as soon as you can.
It’s first come, first served… and when they’re gone, they’re GONE!!!

Here’s a quick glimpse… nine of the sixteen mugs!!
Check them all out at www.facebook.com/firewhenreadypottery

Categories: art fair, mugs

Coming soon to a Facebook page near you…
The St. Nick’s Day Online Mug Sale starts in just one hour
on my Facebook pottery page…¬† www.facebook.com/firewhenreadypottery