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

Another table full of bisqued pots for last night’s marathon glazing session. Either way you look at it… there’s a LOT of pots waiting to go into this weekend’s soda kiln. Happy to report… these are all glazed, wadded and ready to go. For tonight I load the kiln!

Categories: glaze, process, production

It was a big night of glazing last night. A lot of bisqued pots needing to be glazed for this weekend’s soda kiln firing. I start by adding some tenmoku glaze accents as inlays in the stamped patterns. When it dries, I carefully wipe off the top surface to keep the glaze only in the stamped recesses. Lots of glazing… lots of wiping. And that’s just for starters!

Categories: kiln firing, production

One last bisque kiln loaded and firing. Time to start glazing the pieces that came out
of my previous kilns… as my next soda firing is THIS WEEKEND!!! Yikes…
fire fast, cool faster… quick!!!

Bisque Kiln Layer #1 – mugs, flower pots, soap dispensers and square vases (upside down).

Bisque Kiln Layer #2 – stacks of serving bowls, cups… and one class demo ornament!

Bisque Kiln Layer #3 – mugs, teapots, bowls, and square vases

Bisque Kiln Layer #3 and a half – a half layer with small plates & square vases

Bisque Kiln Layer #4 – another half layer with a stack of stamped platters.

And I love when the kiln is packed pretty tight all the way up to the top.
Just a smidge of air space between these platters and the lid when it comes down!



Categories: process, production
Categories: production, stamped, textures, vases

Good thing I’ve been making more of my textured square vases…
because the ones used for Patti’s centerpieces pretty much cleaned me out!
So I’ve made another batch of them… this time in three sizes!!!

So I’ve been making more, adding flashing slip details and setting them out to dry. I decided to dry them on plastic grid for better air-flow, as well as some tile “weights” on the tops to keep them from warping or twisting as they dry. Not an exact science… but it can’t hurt, right?

Categories: pottery, production, stamped, teapot

So my teapots are drying slowly. I wanted to take another photo of the sets as I was moving them onto a raised plastic grid for better airflow and even drying. So here they are gain… my “five” sets of teapots & cups!





And then there were FOUR!!!
Yes, like a bull in a china shop… quite literally… I lifted the wareboard, spun around and ran right into a stack of clay boxes. Yes, those clay boxes have been there for months!!! Nothing new. Nothing that should have surprised me.¬† I was just moving too fast, not paying attention, And in the blink of an eye, the board hit the top box, everything toppled and I managed only to save a cup. Everything else went crumbling down. At least it’s nice to see how evenly thrown my lid was????

Mwah, mwah, mwah…



Categories: pottery, process, production, stamped, teapot

For the final challenge of my LILLSTREET THROWDOWN class, my students were tasked with making a teapot with matching cups & saucers. They have also learned that I love a good challenge… so I’m now making the same.

But you know I can’t make just ONE… so I’m doing FIVE!!!
All assembled and freshly slip painted with colored flashing slips for the soda kiln.






Categories: production

With a final class THROWDOWN challenge of teapot with matching cups & saucers for Thursday night… gotta make some saucers quick if I’m going to finish my set as well.

Categories: classes, lillstreet, process, production, stamped, teapot

So we’re now in the final week of classes for this session. Which means my LILLSTREET THROWDOWN students are working frantically on their final challenge… okay, maybe a “double” challenge?! A week and a half ago in class they got the assignment of a teapot for the last class. So they all started out making their best renditions… although several of them had never made a teapot before!

Then last week in class I surprised them with one last twist of a challenge. Now that they have a teapot started… now they need to make two cups & saucers to go along with that teapot! All to be “finished” greenware by this Thursday’s last class. SURPRISE!!!

And of course, I too was challenged to make a teapot along with them… so I am! You know I love a good challenge. So I’m working on my teapots…. yes, plural… you know I can’t do just ONE of anything!!!


Categories: mugs, process, production, stamped

Attaching handles to freshly stamped mugs.
I always attach the top first, and then “play with” the bottom attachment
to get the size & proportion right… like this one that’s still a bit too big!