Thursday, August 30, 2012

New Stuff

Ok. no old time pickin', no politics, just some newer pots. A couple of sectional jars in the cone 6 clay and some newer glaze work from the cone 10 gas firing at Middletown. I'm dealing with contractors for some roof and blacktop work and getting ready for back to back shows next weekend so I probably won't post til after the shows. Wish me luck.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Jury is Out

Earlier today, Tracey Broome posted a piece about the Jury Experience. Tracey is a very talented Artist/Blogger/Mom who is open about her likes and dislikes. I'm sure she won't mind being mentioned here and if you don't read her blog, you should. You can see it here Tracey Broome. Several other potters, including me, chimed in with our experiences and opinions. Then I went to a local "Arts and Music" festival. It was 5 miles from where I had done well 2 weeks ago but I had done it a few years ago and based on that experience, I was just visiting today. I'll show you the pictures in a minute. My take away was you have to have some standards or you end up with a big yard sale. Jurors are hired by show committees to give their opinion you can't fault them for doing what they were paid to do. You can question how they were selected and what instructions they were given. Did they think they were setting up a museum show? Did they think the price point for mugs was $50 each? If you hire a juror who spends hours and hours on each piece of Ceramic Art they make they may not appreciate functional ware for the masses. I usually agree with jurors that let me in a show and disagree with those who don't.

Anyway, this was just a few rather random thoughts that bounced around my head today. Here are some pictures of what you can get in an essentially unregulated show. We don't want this but we don't want high quality saleable work kept out of shows because it is not "ARTY" enough either. Please chime in with your opinion too. Just click the word "comments" at the bottom of the page.

Friday, August 24, 2012

$2 Slide

As promised, I have been trying to teach myself to play the $2 guitar that I picked up at the yard sale a few weeks ago. For the detail oriented, it is set up in open D tuning to play with a metal slide.

 I like songs that have some history to them and record the lives of the hard working men, women, children, mules and dogs that helped build this country.. This song tells the story of an accident that happened in 1903.I have prefaced the song with some of the details of the incident. The song was first recorded in 1924 and is widely accepted as the first commercial recording of country music. Just remember, it's hard to sing and play at the same time when you really can't do either.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Art on the Lawn

Saturday dawned early (5:00) for me since I was heading for Yellow Springs, Ohio for Art on the Lawn. The truck was loaded so it was : Blondie out,start coffee, shower, dress, drink coffee. drink more coffee, eat, feed and kennel  Blondie, pack drinks and lunch, make coffee to go and hit the road.That is about as much as I do most mornings and it was only 6:15!

 I got to the show about 7:00 and quite a few folks were already setting up. I was glad to have my old site from last year since I could drive up the sidewalk and unload right at my booth. I really am not in shape to schlep this whole booth across the yard so the drive up site is a big plus.Set up went smoothly. I even got a minute to go see fellow Clay Alliance members Dick and Mary Overman and have included a shot of Dick's booth at the end of this post.About 10:30 people started showing up and although they did not trample each other, there was a nice flow of traffic most of the day. Sales picked up about noon ( after the early crowd had been around the loop once) then dropped off for a while. Just when I was starting to worry I sold a couple of sets of plates several sets of cereal bowls. Baking dishes sold well too.I think the cool temps we had put people in a baking mood. In some ways, it was an unusual group of pots that sold. Usually plates are a hard sell but I sold about 10 of them ,cereal bowls usually go 1 or 2 at a time but yesterday they went by 4s and 6s. I could have sold another set of plates and a set of 8 bowls but I got to the point where I couldn't make sets anymore. Usually I sell a dozen mugs. I sold 2!!! My pitchers sell well. No one looked at them. Strange mix. My last show I had 1 check and no charges, all cash. Yesterday was 1/2 cash 1/2 charges and a couple of checks. I don't think my crystal ball has been working so I'm going to have to get throwing and make bowls plates and baking dishes. The up side is I met some wonderful new customers and it all added up to a record high ticket and a record overall day for me.Then there was 2 hours of packing and loading.  There is work to do but today Blondie and I are going to take it easy and spend some quality time together. Here are some booth shots. Thanks for stopping by.

Dick Overman's Booth

Monday, August 6, 2012

Yard Sale

Last weekend was the date for the annual "Route 127 World's Longest Yard Sale" sale. For the uninitiated, the sale stretches from Alabama to Michigan. It's about 30 miles to 127 from here but I thought it might be an interesting little shopping trip.I wasn't disappointed. Amid the usual tables of plastic items and baby clothes there were some neat old things and some items actually useful to mankind.

I ended up with a brand new motorcycle helmet that fits better than my old one for $20. A set of 12 full size carving chisels for another $20, and the find of the day was a $2 guitar. Yup, not a misprint, $2. It was old and funky with a crack in the back and badly needing some set up work but it was worth the money as a wall hanger. When I got her home, I did some research and found out it was an SR brand made by Harmony for Sears and Roebucks. It turns out to be all solid wood (not plywood) and it looks like birch.I went overboard on her and lavished her with new strings, a new nut,and a strap button. I know it seems crazy to spend so much money( I'm up to $9 at this point ) but I'm prone to go overboard sometimes.I have set her up as a slide guitar. I don't know how to play slide,( as you have noticed, I can barely play in standard tuning) but here is a clip just to show what she sounds like.Give me 6 months or so to actually get some music out of her.Thanks for stopping by, I'm off to repack the pots for a show this weekend in Yellow Springs, Ohio. Stop by Saturday if you are in the area.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Pottery, Pottery

Ok, Mesnic seemed disappointed that he found something akin to music on the blog and didn't get to see pottery pictures so here are quick shots of the cone 6 pots that I unloaded yesterday.If you make it to the end, I have included plans for a power polisher to make those lids whisper instead of grate on your nerves when you put them on your casseroles.

Sometimes when you put a lid on a pot, the harsh scraping sound can make your teeth hurt.I used to wear out my wrists putting valve grinding  compound or rubbing compound on rims and lids and twisting them back and forth to get that smooth whisper when the lid rubs on the rim.This morning I got a better idea, just apply your compound, set the casserole on a foam trimming bat, lightly hold the lid still and let 'er spin. Works great!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

For Fun

I fired a kiln full of cone 6 pots this week but I'm too lazy to clean up the studio so I can take pictures so I'm posting this instead. Folks seem to like these, some smile, others laugh out loud. Pottery pictures later this week.