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

Painting some colored flashing slip details & accents on a batch of new textured “block” bud vases. Each side of the block has a different textured pattern. These are now drying and waiting for a bisque kiln… destined to make a splash in my next soda kiln. If all goes well, this new design might get “expanded” into a few different sizes & shapes so people can create their own perfect grouping of textured block vases!!!

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Categories: stamped, tools, vases

Today I finished up my latest batch of miniature vases. Some bud vases with proportionately small stamped details. So today I trimmed the bottoms of them using one of my all-time favorite tools… my Giffin Grip!!!

And yes, even the mini’s are always hand signed!

And then I added some colored flashing slips for colors that will become more vibrant & dynamic during the soda-firing atmosphere.

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Categories: process, production, stamps, vases

Throwing off the hump making some mini vases.
And yes, smaller vases need smaller stamps!!! Go figure.

Categories: television, vases

So I knew ahead of time that my vase would get smashed.
I knew that it would be on Episode Eight of “EMPIRE” Season Three.
I knew that it was finally going to air last night on Fox TV.
I didn’t know the context, the scene or how it would actually go down.
Who knew that such a sexy vixen would be smashing Lucius’ collection to get his attention… as though her strappy lingerie wouldn’t do it alone?! About 46 minutes into the episode… my vase got its 30 seconds of fame!

Pose… Pontificate… then she let go! SMASH!!!
And it smashed on the floor… and she moved onto the next precious item.

As a reminder… when I last saw my vases, they were freshly thrown and “done”.
Sixteen of them for rehearsals and multiple takes during filming.
The Props Dept. at EMPIRE painted the vases on-site for their own “vision.”

Very fun to see finally on television.
It was a great project to be part of… even it they did smash everything?!!!
Special thanks to my friend Amanda for hooking me up and making it happen!

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Categories: television, vases

Word on the street says that there might “allegedly” be a vase smashing on tomorrow night’s “EMPIRE” episode on Fox TV?! Can’t say too much… but watch for a ceramic vase made by “you know who” that may not survive till the end of the evening! They’ve been painted by the Props Dept. so even I don’t know what my vase might look like before it shatters!

If you see it, I’d love a good “screen grab.” Thanks!!!

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

So there was a gaping hole in the top layer of my bisque kiln…
I knew that I had to make something quick!

I “threw together” a couple tall slab vases… measured just to fit when the kiln lid closes. I finished assembling them JUST in time to teach my Tuesday night class. I put them on plastic grid and a banding wheel so I could rotate them in front of a fan to dry them quickly. During class, I skipped out (unnoticed) and ran upstairs to add some colored slip details and keep them spinning.

When class was finally over… they had to go into the kiln regardless of where they were at. I had to fill the space, but couldn’t wait any longer to get the kiln started. So they went in a little damp… with a bit of a pre-heat on the kiln… and fingers crossed.

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Categories: process, production, stamped, vases

Making another batch of stamped discs that will be soda-fired and become ikebana vases. I have them drying “fast” on elevated plastic grids so they can get air circulation on both sides for less warpage.

Here’s why… When clay dries it shrinks. If the air dries one side faster than the other it can curl up on the “shrinking” side. Air flow on both sides encourages more even drying… so less warping. In theory anyways. Don’t quote me on that… unless it works for you too, and the by all means! Quote away!!!

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Categories: flowers, soda-fired, stamped, vases

Sometimes a single white rose can be the perfect centerpiece in a nice ikebana vase.

Categories: television, vases

And so the Battle Begins… and it sounds like my handmade vases
will make their brief appearance on “EMPIRE” Episode 8 before they get smashed!!!
Watch closely… it might be quick?!

My understanding is that Episode 3 airs this week. I’ll keep you posted.

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Categories: art fair, stamped, vases

Finished unpacking just in time… ART IN THE BARN has just begun. And I’ve packed my double booth with lots of pots. Probably could have filled a third booth?!! Ha!