This is the gang of pyromaniacs from the Greenbelt Community Center at our recent wood-firing adventure in October. For most of these potters, these workshops have been their first exposure to wood-firing. We have now completed three of these firings in the last two years, and I can now brag that I have addicted them all.
Wood-firing doesn't always go smoothly, potential monkey wrenches are always lurking. But the character of Greenbelters was on display, everyone kept a productive attitude as we worked late into the night. We were exhausted and starving but still cheering as the pyrometer crossed its milestones. And afterwards, we thoroughly dissected our experiences and these discussions became part of the education. In particular, we discussed the importance of fuel, and not just the wood and the air, but also the human fuel. Don't scream, we didn't throw any humans into the firebox, I'm referring to all the labor and brainpower it takes to make the process work. All things considered, I think we all (including me) learned a lot more about wood-firing this time compared to the last firing when everything went without a hitch.
I guess it makes sense that good potters are good cooks. Both involve a knowledge of materials, linear processes, and heat. Plus a great deal of pottery is functionally intended for food, so people who think about pots are probably thinking about food too. Like I mentioned, we all brought a potluck dish for unloading day, and it was a feast. In fact, after I had eaten a giant meal complete with two desserts, I went back for seconds just because it was all so delicious.
But back to the pots ...
(I found the recipe for Rivulet in the January 2008 issue of Clay Times, in an article by Reed Asher.)