Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Congratulations to the North Carolina Pottery Center

Dr. Everette James and his wife Dr. Nancy Farmer pictured above donated 110 art pottery pieces, along with many other generous pottery collectors.  Thank You!!

The North Carolina Pottery Center had a big day this past Sunday.  The Sunday auction at Leland Littles brought in $35,050.00.  The total amount for the Center raised since the beginning of their fundraising campaign is $80,549.  They are now approaching their goal of reaching the $100,000 mark.  When we raise $9,451 more, an anonymous donor will donate the last $10,000.   Hip Hip Hooray!

On Sunday the historic potters and their collectors came to the rescue.  The Center's mission is to promote public awareness and appreciation of the history, heritage, and ongoing tradition of pottery making in North Carolina.  The past and the present potters, with their supporters are coming together to show their support and keep the Pottery Center open.  If Dorothy and Walter, Nell, A.R., Burlon and others back in time were around on Sunday, I think they would all have given a high five.  The past and the present enthusiasts of clay have come together with all of their talents to save this valuable institution, which is so worth keeping open.

    We missed a great day, and wish we had been there to experience all of the excitement.  On Sunday, the day of the auction Bruce and I were busily working in the studio getting ready for our upcoming exhibition, by squeaking in our last glaze firing.  At the moment the kiln is very hot (to say the least), but cooling.  I believe Bruce will be grinding in the dark tonight.  Tomorrow morning we deliver the pots.

I want to thank Leland Little Auction House for donating their proceeds to the Pottery Center. I want to thank all that put their time into making this auction happen.  

Auction Aims to Save N.C. Pottery (a newspaper article on News 14)

Bill Ivey and other folks packing their purchases in boxes 

Monday, September 29, 2008

One more kiln load

Bruce and I wanted to have one more kiln load of pots to choose from.  We were up until 2:00 am last night finishing, glazing, and loading the kiln.   We are excited about the pieces we have to choose from already, and with the ones that will be coming out on Tuesday we feel good about our body of work for the upcoming exhibition in Raleigh.   We are getting a late start this morning.  As we stay up later in the night our mornings get later and later.  The next couple of days Bruce will be cleaning the pieces, and I will be documenting them.  We are definitely ready for a short breather.  

Saturday, September 27, 2008

North Carolina Pottery Center Fund Raising Auction : September 28

Unsigned Catawba Valley Five gallon alkaline glazed stoneware jar H 16-1/2" W 11-1/2"
Excellent condition

Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.
246 S. Nash St., Hillsborough,
North Carolina 27278

On September 28, 2008, Sunday at 2:00 pm, there will be an auction at Leland Little's in Hillsborough, North Carolina.   This auction is a fundraiser for the North Carolina Pottery Center, located in Seagrove, NC.  The Pottery Center has a wonderful permanent exhibit of old and new pots as well as rotating exhibits, of various themes.   This is a great place and worth supporting.  Become a member, enter one of the raffles that is taking place, or attend the auction Sunday on September 28!
You can view the antique pottery that will be auctioned at Leland Little's website.
Mark Hewitt was interviewed on WRAL this morning about tomorrow's aution.

Signed "Edwin Meaders/ 4-17-87" (Georgia) Cobalt rooster H16" W 10"
Excellent condition

Friday, September 26, 2008

Pieces for Upcoming Exhibition

We unloaded a successful kiln.  Here are some samples of what we pulled out.  We will be exhibiting these and others at the Nature Art Gallery located in the Museum of Natural Sciences, Raleigh next week!  The opening reception is Friday evening, October 3 from 6:00-8:30.  The show will be on exhibit for one month.  The cup below is one of the collaborative pieces that Bruce drew his insects on and I sprigged.  Notice the kiln clay beads kept the piece from sticking to the shelf.  This is an example of way to heavy glaze application at the bottom.  Bruce has a lot of busy work to do on this one.    
Here is one of  Bruce's fossil fish ginger jars.  This constitutes a save, if not for the clay beads this run would have stuck the piece to the shelf.  We have had plenty of those before we started doing this.  We still have mess ups.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Loading a kiln at Bulldog

We loaded a kiln.  We put pieces of kiln clay on our pottery to keep them from touching the shelf.  We will place them in dishes to catch the glaze that runs off.   Our space remains a mess with stacks here and stacks there.  "Where is the glue????  Bruce exclaims, I know I just had it!" Bruce swings to and fro looking....looking.   He found it!  He had put the plastic bat with the balls of kiln clay right on top.  No wonder he could not see it.   

A lot of extra effort, but seriously worth it if the glaze moves just a little too much.  Instead of sticking to the shelf, the kiln clay and dish absorb the damage, protect the shelf, and save the piece[with a little tender grinding and polishing].  Not sutible for production pieces, but for special work with much invested time....yes. 

Monday, September 22, 2008

Glazing / Floating Nasturtiums

We have been busily glazing. We sit basically in the same spot and glaze away. The pieces we are working on for the upcoming exhibition are time consuming. I enjoy the challenge of looking for images to draw and playing around with the composition. This is a time that I allow myself to have the painter in me creatively satisfied. Working with glazes is not at all like working with paint, even though I am using a brush and painting the glazes on. I have to project and do a lot of finger crossing, hoping that the glazes will not move more then I expect, and screw something up. The majority of the glazes we use are very fluid. I am getting better at composing with color. This is a challenge trying to think of what a glossy will next to a matte, and if a color will make another color pop or be to close in hue. A major difference between painting and glazing is with glazing it is all projection and guess work as to what the final results will be. Also if one wants a color to be a certain hue or shade of green, Good Luck. Will your base glaze allow for this?? With paint one can add a bit of yellow or blue....
You would think I would have a book printed of what I have done in the past. One of these days I plan to do this. Gloria had an entirely different suggestion for color combo then what I have chosen. I will have to try it some day.

North Carolina Pottery Center benefit Auction at Leland Little September 28, 2008
This is one of the pieces that will be up for auction this weekend. Pottery has been donated by many well-known collectors and potters. Featuring the legendary pottery collection of Dr. Everette James. The "Mystique of North Carolina Art Pottery" by Everette James is posted on the Potters of NCPC blog.

Unsigned (att. Propst or Reinhardt) Alkaline glazed swirl pitcher H 7" W 6-1/4"
Rim chips

Leland Little Auction & Estate Sales Ltd.
246 S. Nash St., Hillsborough,
North Carolina 27278

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Life in the Undergrowth

Here are our recent images of life in the undergrowth from our garden. The insect world is intriguing. There is a BBC series by David Attenborough called Life in the Undergrowth. They drop him off all over the world to look at different invertebrates. "Invertebrates. For every one of us, there are 200 million of them. " We rented it from Netflix.

Here is spider with her egg case.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Ed spotted a Spider

We were in the studio glazing when Ed came in and yelled "Spider".  I was in the back.  I thought that was what he said, but was not quite sure what he was getting at.  Bruce left and then came back and said "Spider!"  "Ed found a spider come look.  Bring your camera"  So I cleaned up and went out to find my dad standing in the middle of the garden.  I took a picture.  He was marking the spot where he found the largest garden spider I have ever seen.  This spider must of been ready to lay eggs, it was huge.  I went back to look for it a few hours later but she was gone.  I believe we messed with her enough that she figured this was not the spot to hang.  After I took many shots of her I turned around to go back to work when I spotted the grasshopper curiously watching.   

Friday, September 19, 2008

Cups, bowls, jars, and kitty

Here are the pieces I have been working one.  The final results seem like it should not have taken such a long time to do.  Putting sprigs on these pots seemed like such a great idea when I started.   I liked the way they came out on some of the previous mushroom jars that I did, and  Bruce sprigged a couple of cups at the beginning of the year that came out nicely.  Sprigging is a tedious process.   The cups below are a collaboration between Bruce and I.  He drew the bugs on the cups and I put the sprigs on.  We will see.  This will be the first time drawing the bugs on with red clay slip.  We are not sure if the glazes will obliterate them.  We will try to figure out, and project which glazes to use.  

Bruce is drawing on his ginger jars. Getting his imagery mapped out to draw his 'fossils' on them.

Ratatoulle is hanging with us this night.  It is raining outside.  Bruce and I are not cat people and we did try to give her away.   Bruce befriended her when her ferral mom said enough is enough, you are on you own.   We call her TT or Toullee or Rat.  Now we are attached.  Actually it did not take long about a couple of weeks really.  We have had her now for a year and two months.  She is getting used to the camera.  She used to run when I took her picture, now she poses.

Thursday, September 18, 2008


We harvested our volunteer watermelon.  
This is too much fun.
This watermelon is heavy!!

Yes I know...........  But we do love our melons.  This reminds me of something Nancy Gottovi said at dinner the other evening.  She was with David Stuempfle at the Potters Market when a woman came up to their booth display and looked straight at Nancy and said "You have nice jugs."  This still makes Bruce and I laugh.  Yes, David does make nice jugs (as well as other nice forms).
By the way the watermelon..it was tasty.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Views of shop

I have a few views of our display area.  These are the pieces that we now have available in our shop.   I love having a shop full of pots.  
Bruce and I are busily working away to have new work ready for our Nature Art Gallery show in Raleigh.   The opening is at the Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh on October 3, from 6:00 - 8:30.  Gloria and Ed will be dropping of some of my bug jars this week for Karen to display at the museum's Bugfest this weekend.  Bruce and I have been wanting to check out Bugfest for years, and I really thought this year was it. But Bruce looked at me like "You have got to be kidding me....... "  Well I did not actually get to see his face because he was on the other side of the ware cart.  You see we are again under what we call 'lock down' .  Which means every day, all day and late into the night in the studio, getting ready for our upcoming deadline.  These periods are very productive for us, and exhilarating.  We are concentrating on our work in the moment, but also shooting off ideas back and forth on what tweaking we can do in the future to improve our work.

Monday, September 15, 2008

North Carolina Pottery Center: Fundraising Raffle:Joerling, Lindsay, McLaughlin, and Smith

Four talented studio potters from western North Carolina have come together to support the North Carolina Pottery Center. 

"The North Carolina Pottery Center has been an important place to us because it has introduced us to many other working potters in North Carolina.  It has been a wonderful plae to make new friends, be intorduced to new and different approached, and share and discuss ideas about ceramics."  A quote from Suze Lindsay

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Harvesting from the Garden

We were busily harvesting from the garden the other day.  Bruce is cutting the basil and Gloria is getting some of the okra.  The okra can get away from us pretty fast.  I will walk by and say I will pick you next time and when I go back they are as big as my hand.  
Well maybe I did not go back right away.  But there is something anti climatic about picking okra.  One has to have a lot of plants to get a meal.  I feel like I pick one, two , three.... o.k. next day 1, 2, 3, 4 ......  Just never seems to add up to much.  We usually end up enjoying watching them grow.  
Hands down the peppers pictures below are our favorite peppers to grow (well besides anaheims).  They are called Fooled You , because they look like a jalapeno but they are not hot.  I purchased the seed from Pinetree Seeds.   This year Mom and I ordered 17 varieties of tomatoes from a variety of catalogs.  Yikes!  Fun, Fun, Fun....   Anyway getting back to the Fooled You.  This pepper is thick walled, sweet, and great for stir frys.  The plants produce an abundant amount of peppers all the way into fall.  We are constantly picking peppers from around 6 plants.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Squeaking in some wet work

We are squeaking in a couple of days of throwing before we go into lock down and glaze, glaze, glaze for our upcoming exhibition at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, in Raleigh.  Bruce felt he had time to work on a few of his powder box or clam jar forms. When we were discussing what form to throw yesterday, we thought about this one.  Bruce loves this form because it gives him a surface to decorate.  I like throwing a version of it too.  We realized it has been over 4 years since he has thrown this form.
He has also thrown oversized cups.  
I am working on some up and down bowls.  I refer to them as such because of the straight wall. I enjoy this form because it gives me a surface to decorate that can be seen easily compared to lower bowl shape.  I am planning to put sprigs on the sides and glaze them with our flowing glazes.
I also have some oversized cups that I will sprig and mushroom jars that will be decroated with insects.  These pieces will hopefully be ready for the Nature Art Gallery Show in Raleigh!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Home from the Charlotte Potters Market

We are back and working again.  Sunday we were exhausted.  Bruce and I drift around the day after doing an art show.   Catching up on dirty dishes left in the sink and bills that need to be paid.  We had a great time on Saturday.  The crowd was a joy and the weather sunny and hot. Bruce and I brought both our one of a kind decorative crystalline pieces and our every day functional pottery.  Both did well and we were excited to be able to share both with the visitors.

Finally on Tuesday night we faced the music and unloaded the van.  We kept putting the task off.  When two unsuspecting people walked by, Bruce and I said " Aha " !  Now is the time to unload!