Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Wood/Soda Fired Pots

After posting pictures of other peoples work yesterday I thought I should put up some of my own.These pots are all fired in the wood kiln at Maple Creek and will be for sale in their gallery until the end of March.The fires are stoked continuously for 36 hours or so then baking soda and soda ash are introduced into the kiln so the pots self glaze.It takes very intensive work by a large group of potters and friends to accomplish this but you can't get these kinds of pots from a toaster. Hope you enjoy the pictures.


Monday, February 23, 2009

Workshop Weekend

The Cincinnati Clay Alliance/Potters Council Workshop was this weekend.Pam Duncan and Tom Funke spearheaded it. With their leadership and many many volunteers, it seemed to go off without a hitch. I volunteered to help the presenters so I was there all three days and had a great time. I did not get to see all the presenters so I am posting just a few photos from the ones I was able to squeeze in. I'm not comfortable with the layout options for Blogger yet so I hope I can get some of the captions under the right pictures.I told you that this 21st century stuff was new to me.

Gil Stengel is faculty member at NKU.This gives him access to a large kiln and a forklift so he can make these huge pots.He also has access to a clay monkey named Jon Stein who mixes and kneads his clay for him.Both are great guys and very talented potters.I have seen other potters use the methods Gil showed us but Gil actually let 75 people take turns putting clay onto these pots.

Chris Early is from Wisconsin but previously lived near New Richmond. He apprenticed with Mark Hewitt in North Carolina and makes extremely light and even functional pots to precise dimensions.He is very efficient and showed the group how to make beautiful pots with minimal wasted effort.

Mike Baum is a local potter from Lebanon,Ohio.He has made his living as a production potter for over thirty years and is very active in the Clay Alliance.His work was recently featured in Pottery Making Illustrated.At 2pm on March 14 Mike and his wife Karen will be hosting a Kiln Opening sale at their home on SR 350 from 2 to 8pm. This will be a great opportunity to enjoy some hospitality,hear some live music and see how Mike makes these stunning pots.

Laura Ross is a Potter from Louisville. Like Mike she has been making pots for 30 years or more. She held her groups spellbound for 3 hrs on both days. The participants were supposed to make some pots but they said they would rather watch her so they sat with their mouths hanging open as she deftly formed and altered tea bowls and ovenware.


Thursday, February 19, 2009

Whistle Creek is near the area where my ancestors settled in East Tennessee. It is about 6 miles west of I-75 and 8 miles south of Jellico.At various times the land was claimed by Virginia, North Carolina, Kentucky,Tennessee, the Union,the Confederacy, and the Cherokee.My family was there around 1800 and possibly before.My brothers and I still own the top of the mountain and it is still very rough country. I named my studio Whistlecreek in memory of the Allens who scraped their living from the earth and managed to keep it for two hundred years.
Hello Everybody! Here we go with the adventures of a nearly 60 yr old amateur potter who is being dragged into the twenty first century just as he was getting the hang of the twentieth.It seems like basic introductions are in order although if you don't already know me I have no idea why you are here.I am a retired special education teacher. I have been married to my wife Tina for nearly 35 years. Tina is also a retired educator.We have grown children in New York and Charlotte who support themselves and make their student loan payments on time.Tina breeds and shows English Cocker Spaniels and we are hoping for a litter in about six weeks.

After I retired I began making pottery at the Art Center in Middletown ,Ohio and have really gotten into it.I am involved with a community wood/soda kiln near Moscow Ohio and the Cincinnati Clay Alliance.I have had workshops with John Britt, Pete Pinnell, Gay Smith,Mark Hewitt, and Ky. potter Sarah Culbreath.My work has been well received and I have begun selling pots on a regular basis. I am currently involved with the Potters Council Regional Workshop and will be doing artist support this weekend. I am sure I will have a lot to report.