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

Here’s your chance to come play in the mud with me!!! New for the Fall session starting next week… I’ll be teaching Advanced Wheelthrowing on Thursday mornings from 10:00am-1:00pm. There’s still a couple openings… even though my Beginning & Intermediate Wheel classes are already booked.

Check out to register for Fall classes!!!

Categories: artists, production, wheelthrowing

Well, apparently today was “small plate day”!!! Lots of bats. Lots of small plates. Just getting one step closer to ART IN THE GARDEN… still working on my collaboration project with my “cohort” Cory McCrory!

Categories: bowls, collaborations, process, production, stamped, wheelthrowing

I’m working on my part of the collaboration project I’m doing with my pal Cory McCrory for ART IN THE GARDEN. We’re just three weeks away so it’s time to get things going in high gear! Gotta get my part done… as I would hate to be the one who doesn’t fulfill my part of the collaboration!!!

So I’ve been stamping & details another set of bowls… getting one step closer…

Bowl #1 –

Bowl #2 –

Bowls #3 –

Bowl #4 –

Bowl #5 –

Bowl #6 –

More to come as I keep working on my part of the collaboration!
This is just a start… and little bit of a “teaser”!!!

Categories: classes, platters, wheelthrowing

This morning with my Intermediate Wheelthrowing class, we tackled how to throw good plates & platters. A dinner with a smoothly curved flange, and a larger platter with a flared out rim. One with a nice spiral, the other with concentric circles just to mix it up a bit!!!

Categories: classes, lillstreet, wheelthrowing

Today in my Intermediate Wheelthrowing class we tackled throwing taller… vase, bottle, whatever. It was all about getting the clay to move up off the bottom, getting it out of the bottom corners and move it up the sides to make taller pieces.

After a demo with a few quick tips & tricks, they were well on their way. I gave them a challenge of at least 9-inches tall with two pounds of clay. Everyone who tried it made it… and some were just a bit giddy!

Categories: bowls, classes, wheelthrowing

Last night in my Beginning Wheelthrowing class, we tackled making “bowls on purpose”… instead of cylinders gone bad! After making a few demo bowls, we regrouped (socially-distanced of course) for more demo time where I showed them some quick tricks & techniques on how to make their basic round bowls not so “basic” any more! Ten quick bowls & ten different decorative techniques!

Bowl #1 – Eight fluted edges around the rim.

Bowl #2 – A narrow flared-out flange.

Bowl #3 – A wider flared out flange.

Bowl #4 – Split-rimmed and then pinched back together in eight places!

Bowl #5 – Split-rimmed with four indented sides to make a kind of quadrefoil effect.

Bowl #6 – Split-rimmed and then pinched in & pinched out making like a squared-off lotus shape.

Bowl #7 – White slip with a tight spiral dragged through.

Bowl #8 – A thick layer of white slip with a fingertip squiggle dragged through.

Bowl #9 – White slip chattered with a rubber rib as the bowl was spinning on the wheel.

Bowl #10 – White & black slip ombre’ blended and then a spiral dragged through.

And for now they’re under wraps in my studio drying slowly… as many of them “might just” get some stamping, texturing & detailing?!

Categories: classes, lillstreet, wheelthrowing

So I taught my new Intermediate Wheelthrowing class yesterday in the new wheelthrowing room at Lillstreet Art Center. I was stupified by the amount of natural light coming in through the windows!!! My studio has no window access so it was all new to me. It was kind of amazing… huge windows along the wall above the wheels… then I realized that I typically teach night classes… and that might be part of it too?!

Categories: mugs, process, production, wheelthrowing

Okay, so I know I said that those flower pots would be the last thing before my soda-firing deadline… but I’m pretty sure I can squeeze in a quick batch of mugs too!!! You know they’re my favorite thing to make!!! So what’s another dozen…

Categories: process, production, wheelthrowing

Freshly thrown… soon to be made into little flower pots. I finally scheduled my next soda-firing, so these might be the last “new” things I can crank out to get into that kiln?! We’ll see… you know I love a deadline… and a good challenge!!!

Categories: pottery, totem pole, wheelthrowing

So after playing hooky all day on my bike while it was gorgeous outside…
I finally made it into the studio for a very productive evening!
Throwing LOTS of parts & pieces for another big project!