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

So excited to be using the new Bison Tool I bought while at NCECA.
I love my other Bisons… so I knew this slightly smaller one would be PERFECT!!!
You know I love trimming… now even more with great tools!!!

Categories: classes, stamps, tools

We’re in our third week of my Beginning Wheel class. They’re moving along nicely, but at some point they’re going to be ready to start decorating… and “quite possibly” do a little stamping. So last night in class we sat down to have them make some new stamps for themselves to use. Of course they¬† need to dry and be bisque fired first. But then they’ll get to play with texture & pattern. Two of my FAVORITE things!!!

Categories: process, production, tools

A bowl is just a bowl… until it gets HOLES.. . and becomes a Berry Bowl.
So I start with my MKM Decorating Disk to help divide the spacing evenly.
I stick my needle tool through the holes on the disk to mark the bottom of the bowl.

And then I pull out the POWER TOOLS!!!
A power drill makes the holes so much faster & cleaner than trying to punch them out by hand. And having a few different sizes of drill bits on hand helps with the design.

Plus… I’m hoping that the clay shrinkage will help close up those big holes…
don’t want to lose any blueberries!

And then after drilling all of the holes, there’s a just a little bot of clean-up om the inside.
These little burrs are very easy to wipe off with my fingers…
but look how clean those holes are!!!

And then



Categories: bowls, patterns, process, production, sgraffito, tools

I just found two bowls that I made “awhile” back, and painted the interior with colored slip. I wrapped them up in plastic… and then apparently forgot about them. And it’s been “quite’ awhile… so they were harder & drier than I would like them to be. But with my one of my extra-sharp DiamondCore Tools they still carved like a dream!

Categories: process, production, tools

You know how I LOVE trimming…
and even more so with a nice sharp Bison Trimming Tool
and clay at just the right stage of leatherhard
so you get nice smooth ribbons of clay coming right off!

Categories: classes, patterns, porcelain, sgraffito, tools

So much fun to see one of my Tuesday Night pottery students “test driving” her new V-tip DiamondCore Tools for the very first time… first time with this tool AND first time carving all together!!! Looks like Jen is off to an AMAZING start… a little carving prodigy in the making!!!

Categories: tools

So last week’s LILLSTREET THROWDOWN challenge was to create a beautiful “tulipiere”… which many students had never even heard of…. but by using the extruder as their primary tool… a tool that many of the students had never heard of. A double whammy!

So they all started by extruding parts & pieces… much like these…
and then the constructing began…


Categories: patterns, sgraffito, tools

Carved with my DiamondCore Tools!
Just needs a little brushing to clean-up the scraps after they dry!

Categories: bowls, sgraffito, tools

One of the ONLY “benefits” of working in my studio while the ceiling light fixture is not working is that I get some really dramatic photos from the tabletop task lights I had to install in the meantime. Like these carving through an ombre-slipped class demo bowl with one of my favorite DiamondCore Tools!

Categories: bowls, process, production, tools

So while it snowed this afternoon, I was trimming…
and using my favorite Bison Trimming Tool to make the perfect spiral ribbons of clay!