I tweaked the proportions of my most popular bowl. Now it's 1cm narrower and 1cm taller. This bowl is designed for eating while sitting on the sofa in front of the tv, and the deeper shape adds to its functionality. But here's what really excites me ... I used to fit only 5 bowls on a kiln shelf, with some smaller spaces left over for smaller pots. But now I can squeeze seven bowls on a shelf, with no wasted space. This makes me snort with nerd laughter.
This is weird ... I really like the smell of curing plaster. It smells clean and a little bit sweet. I wish someone would make fabric softener with this scent. Some wordsmith would have to give it a name that appealed to the masses. "Drywall-icious?" Maybe not. Or how about "Brand New House?" That might work. Soon I'll have these two new plaster bats for recycling clay, adding to the four that I already have. This means I can recycle more clay at a time, and less frequently. Works for me.
The glaze I use the most is named Flannel, a light gray, matte, opaque glaze. I guess you could call this my "signature" glaze, it is the predominant look of most of my pots. But I prefer to glaze the insides of my foodware pots with something glossy, because it's more utensil-friendly and faster to wash. I've been working on a new liner glaze for a few months, and I think I finally figured it out. The new glaze is named Vanilla, and it looks an awful lot like the old liner glaze named Tan Gloss. They are both cream colored, glossy and opaque, with tiny hints of brown. But the base recipes are totally different. When Tan Gloss moved in next to Flannel, they lived happily as friendly neighbors. But when Vanilla moved in next to Flannel, Flannel fell in love.
Officially, I took two weeks off from work for the holidays. But I thought about slip the whole time. Not that it isn't fun to see my family ... cooking and eating big meals, playing the Wii, going shopping ... it's just that new slip ideas were swirling. Lately I've been feeling that my usual carved illustrations were looking kind-of flat. I wanted to add different slipwork techniques, like brushing and trailing, to the carving. Brushing and trailing make three-dimensional deposits of slip. Plus it's really hard to make long, sweeping curved lines by carving, because my tools drag so much against the clay. But trailing is a different story! I didn't quite make it to the end of my family's visit. I begged off for a few hours to work in the studio. My appetite was huge and I threw nothing but 7lb pots. Then I went nuts with slip.
Mea Rhee (mee-uh ree),
American Craft Council Baltimore
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