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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Week(end) in Review & The Elms

I was back in the studio this weekend, and I have yet again failed to take pictures of the boring things I've been working on. I've been working on replenishing stock for some upcoming fall shows, and that includes adding a little bit more diversity to my current body of work. As such, I'm working on a number of bowls that will see no slip and no sgraffito - though some basic relief carving will be in order. This adds up to more glazing for me, but I think I should be able to handle it.

But I guess the real news from the studio was the batch of new work fresh out of a glaze fire...
I am (overall) quite pleased with this load.  I "experimented" with actually glazing some pots, and to mixed results, as always.  Some of them turned out quite nicely with some glaze over the slip, and some of them did not turn out as well.  I also was advised by a wise one that I needed to do some more work in brighter colors.  So I did a few, and those, on the whole, came out pretty well, I think.  But then, what do I know.  The pieces here should at least lend some of that needed diversity to what I already have.

Also, sad news: that lime-green slip - that I mixed months ago and have only just now glazed - fired brown.  So, still no dice on the green slip, but plenty of shades of brown.  Hmm.

Anyhow, here's a couple more shots of things out of this firing.  This is the first time I've used this glaze on these large sgraffito bowls, and I'm pleased with the result.  It lends a sort of aging effect, I think, and some of the bleeding/streaking and spotting in there is kinda neat. 
 
It's nice to know that I can trust the results of this glaze for these, at least.  But then, with my luck, me thinking it's really cool means that nobody else will.  Seems to be the way it goes.   
And some cups.  Simple, with a dependable glaze.  My kind of pots.  There were plenty more pots that came from tried and true glazes that I'm also quite happy about.  I'll try to get "official" slides shot of all these pieces soon.  In the meantime, I hope this smattering will do.

Now, back to some studio updates: I forgot to shoot any of the bowls I'm working on, but here's some cups I threw Sunday. These will, actually, get some sgraffito. And I'm sure I'll be doing plenty more of these in the coming weeks.
Last night I was back in the studio to do some trimming and recycling (yay for 20 pounds of "new" clay!) and also took another swing at some larger plate forms. I'm still struggling in my approach for this, as I've never tried to throw anything this big before. So far I'm kind of tapping out at 15-16 inch plate forms which will certainly shrink even smaller. Oh well. I'll keep working on it. In the meantime, it's great to be throwing big pieces, whether they're quite what I'm looking for or not.

That's it for now.  And, let me say quickly that I have in my possession the new release from The Elms (about whom I raved here), and I will say with confidence that it is fabulous.  After four (five?) listens since last night, I'm thinking it is probably their best yet, in terms of musicianship, lyrics, and production.  I don't know that it makes it my favorite, but definitely brilliant.  This time around they continue on the raw, midwestern rock sound that they've become known for, and have further focused their rootsy style when they bring the volume down.  So, please check out The Great American Midrange.  I'm pretty sure you won't regret it.

(Yes, Dad, that means you too - I think any fan of the Eagles could appreciate this album.  Just don't turn it up too loud!)

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