Friday, June 27, 2014

National Insect Week

Red Eye Fly, photo by Samantha Henneke, Seagrove, NC

Did you know that this is National Insect Week?

I follow a few bug twitterers and found out that this week, June 23 - June 29, is National Insect Week. The Royal Entomological Society of the United Kingdom organizes this week every two years in order to educate people of all ages to learn more about insects.

I like to take macro images of insects on the property and in the garden.  Inspirations come from the vivid colors, the textures, and abstract shapes that form because of the shadows and light.

Holding myself as still as possible, sometimes in an awkward position, knees bending, neck tilted, often waiting for the insect to land and hoping that we both will stay still at the same time.  If the wind is blowing, even the ever so slight breeze, images of insects become even more difficult and next to impossible to shoot with the camera.

It would be cool to have a photographer taking images of a photographer taking images.  Documenting the process of photographers out in the field would be a good learning experience for the audience looking at the images that the photographer has taken.  A couple of years ago Julie Galloway demonstrated (along with Peter Beasecker and Tara Wilson) at the North Carolina Potters Conference in Asheboro, NC. During her slide presentation she showed an image of a photographer immersed neck deep in a pond, and her comment was "being in the thick of it".  That is when you are really in the throws of creating your art.  A compelling place when you are just making, and everything around you is a blur. Bruce and I call this being "in the zone", a wonderful place to be.

Little Tiny Bug, photo by Samantha Henneke, Seagrove, NC

Dragonfly, photo by Samantha Henneke, Seagrove, NC

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The Happy Truth…. The Cousins are Coming...

Meet Bruce, Samantha, Dan, Michael and Blair
"Cousins in Clay" at Bulldog Pottery-Seagrove, NC
May 31 - June 1, 2014
 Saturday 10-5 and Sunday 10-4
Happiness is Spending the Weekend with Your Clay Cousins

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

"Cousins in Clay" - Seagrove, North Carolina

Bruce Gholson, Samantha Henneke, Michael Kline, at Michael Kline's Pottery
"The Cousins Are Coming" - May 31 - June 1, 2014 to Seagrove, NC at Bulldog Pottery
Samantha Henneke, Bruce Gholson, Michael Kline

We are putting our finishing touches on making pottery.  Life is super busy here at Bulldog.  We are getting ready for our clay cousins to come to Seagrove. Dan is driving from Illinois, Blair is traveling from Michigan, and Michael will be rolling down from near North Carolina's Roan mountaintop.  

Samantha Henneke, Bruce Gholson, Michael Kline

Back in 2009 we had our first kiln opening here at Bulldog Pottery.  We invited Michael Kline to join us. We wanted to give it a name and Bruce remembered a blog post that Michael wrote on "Sawdust and Dirt" about visiting his clay cousins here in Seagrove. Little did Michael know (or did he?), that his post would lead to an invite to our pottery sale. Since that first sale, we have now partnered with Michael and hold two "Cousins in Clay" pottery events a year.  At the beginning of the summer "Cousins in Clay" is at Bulldog Pottery in Seagrove, NC, and at the end of the summer "Cousins in Clay" is held at Micheal Kline's Pottery close to the Penland Crafts School, in Bakersville NC.

This year we have invited Dan Anderson and Blair Clemo to be our honored "Clay Cousins".  Dan Anderson retired from teaching in 2002 and is very outgoing and involved in the clay community. He curates shows, does workshops, makes lots of pots, and is actively engaged on social networks sharing lots of images.

Blair Clemo is a young, up and coming potter with an amazing touch, and unique flair with clay. We first met Blair when he was a presenter at the Utilitarian Clay Conference at the Arrowmont School of Crafts. Congratulations to Blair, who has accepted a tenure-track ceramics teaching position at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond VA, the #1 rated University Arts program.

Saturday, May 31, 2014
We hold the "Cousins in Clay" event in our breezeway. We always hope for splendid weather, but if need be we will move inside.
"Cousins in Clay",  Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC
Last year Michael and Bruce gave a duo demo, this year will be different, and we are honored and happy to announce that Blair Clemo will present a demonstration on Saturday at 3:00pm and Dan Anderson will present a demo on Sunday from 1:30pm -2:30pm.

Michael Kline and Bruce Gholson at 2014 "Cousins in Clay"
The whole weekend is filled with good times. Beginning on Saturday Chornis Pou Vasilou will play his Greek bouzouki in the morning.
Chronis Pou Vasilou playing the bouzouki, and Jack Troy's pots 2013, Seagrove, NC 
Blair Clemo will be demonstrating on Saturday beginning at 3:00. The Saturday event winds up at 5:00pm. Blair posted a time-lapse video a few weeks ago on you tube of building one of his covered jars.
Blair Clemo, Seagrove, NC
Sunday - June 1
Sunday is a super fun day as well. Beginning at 10:00am we will be ready for you to join us for more pottery loving times.   At 12:00 the potters potluck begins. Bring a dish to share and sit for awhile with the potters from the region.  This has become a very special time for us.  We invite the local potters to take an afternoon off from their busy schedules to vista, eat, and welcome our out-of-state pottery guests to North Carolina.

Potters Potluck at "Cousins in Clay" on Sunday June 1, 2014, Seagrove, NC
Some of the potters will be bringing their instruments to play music for us as well. Al McCanless will be showing up with his fiddle, and Michael Mahan has said that he will show up with his flute. Eck McCanless mentioned that maybe he will be able to make it as well.

Michael Mahan and Al McCanless at "Cousins in Clay" 2013, Seagrove, NC
At 1:30pm we will break for a 1 hour long demo with pottery master Dan Anderson and I am for one looking forward to seeing Dan behind the wheel.  There is a good podcast interview by Brian Jones of Dan Anderson on the "Jonescast".
Dan Anderson, Seagrove, NC
As Dan winds down his demo maybe we can get an encore from the musicians for a few more tunes.

Chad Brown pottery project to build his first wood kiln, Seagrove, NC
We wanted to let you know about another pottery happening the weekend of the Cousins, which is Chad Brown's "1000 Mugs to Build a Kiln" project.  The mugs are $25 and these can be picked up at his newly purchased property on Chriscoe Road.  You can e-mail him at chadcameronbrown at gmail dot com .

Chad Brown pottery project to build his first wood kiln, Seagrove, NC

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Yunomis for AKAR

 Yunomi by Bruce Gholson, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC
Every year the AKAR Design Gallery (located in Iowa City) holds a Yunomi invitational. Over the years it has grown and now there are 187 potters that are apart of this online sale.  The yunomis sell fast so if you want a chance to buy you need to set up an account and be ready when it opens online at 10:00 Central (which is 11:00 Eastern time).  Many artists sell out in the first 1/2 hour of the show.  The sales are online only.

We enjoy making Yunomis every year for this show.

Pictured here are our Yunomis that will be for sale at the AKAR Yunomi show opening this Friday April 25, 2014

Here are the details…
Upcoming Show: April 25 - May 16, 2014
2014 Yunomi Invitational (Online Only!)

Yunomi (U-know-me)- A form of teacup, typically made of ceramic material, being taller than wide, with a trimmed or turned foot. Unlike the more formal chawan tea bowl which is used during the Japanese tea ceremony, the Yunomi tea bowl is made for daily (or informal) tea drinking.

The Countdown Has Begun!

The Yunomi Invitational is now only a few days away! This is their largest annual show; this year they have a total of 935 Yunomi.  Please remember this is an online event only, therefore they will not be taking any requests over the phone or by email on the opening day. This Friday, April 25, at 10:00 AM Central Time all Yunomi will be available at AKAR.

You will need to create an account at AKAR Design if you want to be ready to make a request when the 2014 Yunomi appear this Friday at 10:00 AM Central Time. If you have already registered on our website, be sure your account information is current.

To register as a new customer visit your AKAR Account Login Page. Submit your email and password, and then fill out your account information. You will not need your credit card information to register.

After you've created your account, you can immediately browse the site and pick products from our selection of artists and designers. If you find an artist on the 2014 Yunomi list above whose work you like, consider book marking his/her artist page. When the new Yunomi appear, you'll save precious moments as other customers race to find and purchase their own favorites.

If you have questions about the ordering process or the 2014 Yunomi Invitational, please call the gallery at (319)351-1227 or email

Yunomi by Bruce Gholson, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC
Yunomi by Bruce Gholson, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC
Yunomi by Bruce Gholson, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC

Yunomi by Bruce Gholson, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC

Yunomi by Samantha Henneke, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC
Yunomi by Samantha Henneke, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC
Yunomi by Samantha Henneke, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC

Yunomi by Samantha Henneke, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC

Yunomi by Samantha Henneke, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Celebration of Seagrove Potters Annual Spring Kiln Opening

Visit the Seagrove Potteries, Seagrove, North Carolina
  There are 37 Seagrove Potteries collaborating together on April 26 and 27, 2014 for the annual Celebration of Seagrove Potters Spring Kiln Openings. Bruce and I will have a large selection of our crystalline vases here at our Bulldog Pottery shop.

We want to thank all the volunteers that are working hard at organizing the Seagrove Potters' spring kiln opening event.  And thank you to our sponsors, Heart of North Carolina Visitors Bureau and Life 103.1. We do appreciate your support! There will be a map that you can pick up at any of the participating potteries.

 The Seagrove Potteries that are participating are

Avery Pottery & Tileworks, Ben Owen Pottery, Blue Hen Pottery, Bulldog Pottery, Caldwell-Hohl Artworks, Coop of Seagrove Potters, Chris Luther Pottery, Crystal King Pottery, Dean & Martin Pottery, Dirtworks, Donna Craven Pottery, Eck McCanless Pottey, Freeman Pottery, From the Ground Up, Great White Oak Gallery, Hickory Hill Pottery, JLK Jewelry @ Jugtown, Johnston & Gentithes Art Pottery, Jugtown Pottery, Keith Martindale Pottery, Kings Pottery with Crystal King, Latham's Pottery, Luck's Ware, McNeill's Pottery, Michele Hastings & Jeff Brown Pottery, O'Quinn Pottery, Pottery by Frank Neef, Pottery Road Studio & Gallery, Pott's Pottery, Ray Pottery, Seagrove Stoneware, Smith Pottery, Snowhill Pottery & Tileworks, Studio Touya, Thomas Pottery, Tom Gray Pottery, Triple C Pottery.

Follow, Like, and Share our Celebration of Seagrove Potters Facebook page, there are many posts of all the different potters that are participating in this years spring kiln opening event.  We also have a Seagrove Potters Facebook page that is filled with images of Seagrove Potters.

Visit the Seagrove Potteries, Seagrove, North Carolina

Friday, April 4, 2014

Daffie Days - Celebrate the Vase and the Ubiquitous Daffodil

Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, North Carolina

Join us today and tomorrow at Bulldog Pottery for

"Daffie Days"
April 4-5, 2014
Friday and Saturday
3306 US Hwy 220 Alt.
Seagrove, NC 27341

Our Bulldog Pottery shop is full of new vases. Looking forward to seeing you!

We have been enjoying looking at the range of glaze colors and crystals. We have new glazes that we are working on - Cosmos, Galaxy, The Other One, Rad Gold, and Gold Gold (we need names so we know which glaze we are talking about). Bruce has a lot of work ahead of him. (about 3/4 of these vases need to be polished) We are pretty excited right now and are ready to make more pots! Smile.

Stay tuned for some individual vase images.

Daffodil at Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Vases on the Table

Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC
Daffie Days is this weekend on April 4-5, 2014.  Our Bulldog Pottery shop is located at 3306 US Hwy 220 Alt. Seagrove, NC 27341.  We are located 5 miles south from the town of Seagrove's traffic light. Look for the large blue water tower and our driveway is right beside it.  Take the gravel driveway to our pottery shop. See you soon!

The exploration of the vase form is fascinating to us, with so many possible nuances. Vases as well as the bottle forms provide us with such a diversity of great silhouettes for our glazes.  We enjoy the process of the search, and experimentation involved in looking and testing for new colors and glaze effects. Testing original glaze formulas takes a lot of time, and we have to figure out how to squeeze in a couple of more days to get the test glazing accomplished. Usually when the tests come out there is hopefully at least one that can work, and the others will have to go back to the drawing board. Below is an assortment of some of the glaze tests that we pulled out from the last two kiln firings.

Glaze tests, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC
Samantha and a table full of vases, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC 
The glazes that we apply to our vases are very fluid and it takes time prepping the rings so they fit just right onto the bottom of the vases. Below Bruce is carving the rings thinner so when cutting the ring off the vase after the glaze firing there is less chance for a mishap.

Bruce finishing clay rings for the vases, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC 
Koi insists on sleeping on Bruce's table while he works. Sometimes this is just fine and we let her but other times she messes with the wet pots and is banned from table sleeping.
Luna Bella has settled right in. She loves to be with us in the studio. She is very active and has been a wonderful puppy.  Luna Bella and Koi have a great relationship and we think they will be long time friends. Sometimes Koi will even push objects off of the table just for Luna Bella to chew.

Luna Bella, Bulldog Pottery, Seagrove, NC
We currently have this lovely pink centered daffodil blooming, and the color is enchanting.