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

My box of mugs finally made their way to Massachusetts to “surprise” fellow potter Pam Kinsmith. She’s been coordinating a wonderful fundraiser called “Finding Forever” where all of the donated mugs & cups represent a child in the Foster Care System. So I decided to send a trio that show how children of “different colors” can still make up a beautiful family if adopted as a trio. Appreciate them each for their differences, love them for their similarities.

I also sent a matched pair of “twins” which I hope will get “adopted” together as well. I would have for these siblings to get split up – which I sure is a problem within the Foster Care System.

You still have a few more days if you would like to donate a mug or two to this wonderful cause. I have also collected a few cups form other potter friends at Lillstreet. I’ll be shipping those soon… and will definitely give you a sneak peek of those ones too!

If you would like to donate to “Finding Forever”, click here for more information.

Categories: artists, gallery, mugs

Hey Fellow Potters – You still have a few days to donate a mug to “Finding Forever.” A fundraising event similar in style to “Empty Bowls” but this time to benefit the kids in the Foster Care System. I’ve already shipped a few of my own mugs to organizer & potter Pam Kinsmith. And another box leaving soon of mugs from other Lillstreet potters. So grab a mug, box it up and ship it to “Finding Forever.” Deadline : October 1st, 2014.

Click here for more information from the “Finding Forever” website.


Categories: classes, mugs

This week in class my students tackled adding handles to their cylinders in Week Two. Several of the students had cylinders ready to trim and add handles. So they pulled their handles in the traditional manner, let them stiffen a bit and then attached them to their cylinders. Not a bad start for my beginning & advanced beginners.

Categories: art fair, mugs, production

Fresh from the kiln… I unloaded my soda kiln last night and got a lot of sweet pieces out of it. After a slightly anxiety-ridden firing, all turned out well. So now these two, and almost 50 more new mugs from this firing will all be headed to ART IN THE BARN this weekend!!! Come on out to Barrington!!!

Categories: art fair

Come join us this weekend in Barrington for ART IN THE BARN.
It’s my largest outdoor fair of the year!

By “outdoor” I mean open air yet still protected as we’re in the Lower Barn E4 & E6 as usual. And by “largest” I mean that I have a double booth space in Barrington. Larger booth means larger pottery selection!!! Whoo-hooo… see you this weekend!!!

Categories: kiln firing, process, production

Last night I unloaded my soda kiln. After a full day of firing and a full day of cooling, you’re always a little anxious to unbrick the door and get your first peek of what’s inside. The front of the kiln is always “pounded” with a bit more soda… and there fore a bit more “gray.” But the backsides of those pots on the edge are usually pretty sweet, with great contrast to the soda blast zone. Here’s the front stack of the kiln…

And then the back stack of the kiln…
looks like pretty good coverage throughout. No dry spots that I can see so far.

Yep, everything turned out pretty well. A good coverage of soda on the pots.
A lot of nice flashing. Some sweet glaze effects.

A LOT of mugs… you know they’re my favorite thing to make!!!

A couple new sets of salt & pepper shakers…

And some new tiles, in a few new sizes…

Categories: television

Hard to believe that my favorite TV Show of all time had it’s first debut
ten years ago today!!! I loved it the first time… and have watched the entire series a few more times since. In fact, I’ve just started over again… and just finished Season One this past weekend. Yes, I’m a dork.

Categories: nature, seasons

Today is the official last day of Summer. Fall beings this evening…

Okay, so I’m not a big fan of hoodies… but otherwise I’m in.
Of course I’d rather have Summer for just a little bit longer!

Categories: glaze, kiln firing

Late tonight I was able to unload my cone six glaze kiln… with gloves!
Once again, mixed results… but at least I have a few more answers.

Apparently, the top of the kiln is not getting to top temperature. Remember that this time I placed pyrometric cones on the top & bottom shelves. The bottom cones melted just perfectly for a cone six firing. The top cone pack however didn’t show ANY movement at all. So who knows how hot it got on the top?… we know it WASN’T cone six!!!

Okay, so now I might be onto something. And maybe this explains some of my “random” results. I’m getting tired of testing a full kiln’s worth of work to find another problem… more pinholing, more crawling, more yuck!!! Maybe once we fix the kiln temperature problem I can start to get some consistent results???

Categories: artists, friends, My Talented Friends, nature

C’mon now… this is just crazy!   CRAZY PERFECT!!!
Yep, she’s at it again…

For anyone who knows me fairly well,
you know that I have a strange fascination with roadkill.
Can’t get enough. Gotta stop. Must take a photo.

Having pedaled thousands of miles across the country & rural farmlands, you see a wide range. And not surprisingly, I now have quite the collection of photos of roadkill I’ve seen over the years. It’s the “Circle Of Life.” It’s nature’s way of reclaiming one of its own. It’s one bad decision in thinking they can out-race that car across the road. It’s the fascination of how thing change, evolve, decay and reveal a whole new system, a structure, a skeleton.

And now two of my favorites are colliding…
roadkill done with that wonderfully whimsical Cory McCrory flair!!!
Gotta love it… gotta have it. You know my birthday is coming up… hint, hint…

She’s started a whole collection of roadkill plates.
And here they are with underglaze colors waiting for the glaze firing.
They can ONLY get better!!! I can’t wait to see the final results!!! Love ‘em Cory!!!

So here’s one… “Why did the chicken cross the road?”
To prove to the raccoon that it CAN be done!!!