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

After the wax layer had cured & hardened, we wiped away the background with a wet sponge. If there was colored slip there, that got wiped away… anything that was “protected“ by the wax stayed in place. As they continued to wipe away with cold water, their images & patterns began to reveal themselves. And if you keep wiping more & more, you start to create two surface layers… the top one being your original layer, and the second layer a smidge lower. It’s that tactile contrast in depths that is really cool. We even used some Q-tips to get into it to create nice crisp edges. When finished, they will bisque & glaze as normal for a cool bowl either a groovy pattern… all done with Water Etching!

Categories: classes, process

Last night in my studio before class… I did a little “pre-waxing” of my design to give it time to dry. The demo was going to be water etching with my SURFACE DECORATION class… and I had planned to do a little “cooking show switch-out” in mid-demo. So this was my platter before class… wax drying… and waiting for the actual water etching to begin!

Categories: hybrid mugs, process, production, soda-fired

Still prepping, pricing & packing!!! Trying to get everything ready for the SCHAUMBURG PRAIRIE ARTS FESTIVAL this weekend. Working in the basement finishing up these hybrid mugs… and splitting them up so I’m sure I have enough for each of my next three shows over the next three weekends!!!

Categories: process, production, tools

Doing a little bit of trimming quickly before teaching tonight. Love when the ribbons come flying off cleanly & quickly… especially when working with my DiamondCore Tools & Giffin Grip. The perfect combo for some quick trimming fun!!!

Categories: classes, process, surface decoration, textures

After my class demo, my SURFACE DECORATION students went off to start carving on their own pots. So much fun to see them using different techniques & tools to create their own special carvings, patterns & textures!

Categories: classes, process, textures

This week with my SURFACE DECORATION class, we tackled carving & slip trailing… okay, so mostly carving! We talked about carving textures & patterns into our pots with different tools to get different effects. Like some clean carved grooves using some of my DiamondCore Tools … and fun little circles with an old drill bit.

Categories: clay, process, studio

Celebrating EARTH DAY by playing in some goopy-gloppy mud!!! More fun in the studio… more FREE CLAY!!!… after a LOT of work turning my scraps into viable clay again. Ahhh… the fun of reclaiming clay!

Categories: process, stamped, stamps

Doing a little stamping on a couple class demo vases… before you going down to teach another class tonight! Just trying to get to keep one step ahead…

Categories: kiln firing, process, production

Packed tight from top to bottom, as well as the three shelves deep. It’s a lot of pots & mini tiles trying to utilize as much surface space as possible… trying to get the most out of every soda kiln firing!

Categories: process, production

Backing it up a couple days… to Friday when I finally finished my glazing & wadding, and took my pots down to the kiln room to start loading the soda kiln. Since my studio is on the second floor of Lillstreet, and the soda kiln is on the first floor… my pots need to travel downstairs in the rickety freight elevator. So I’ve learned to use some masking tape as “seat belts” to keep everything place during the journey.