Sunday, December 5, 2021

Remind me again

 


Here we are another December.  The older I get, the faster the years fly by.

Let's talk Pottery!   I'm still making decorative fun pieces.  Anyone who is familiar with my work will know that mugs are my zen thing.   I love, love, love making sweet mugs.

I have a zillion making techniques in my tool box but I believe that I have found my technique soulmate.   Mono-print allows me to illustrate, paint and work with clay.   It doesn't get better than that for me.  There's so much of my heart in these pieces and I feel a connection with each one.  

"Meant to Be" Mug
 by DirtKicker Pottery

Not everyone knows how much time and creativity goes into making and selling pottery.  Starting at wedging the clay and ending with driving boxes to the post office.  It's a labor of love for sure.

Many years ago I wrote a blog post "how much is that mug?"  I want to remind myself and others about the work that goes into making a handmade mug.   Even if my work isn't selling as fast as I would like, I still need to put a value on my time and art.  Not just for me, but for all makers.    

"Winter Bird" Mug, 
by DirtKicker Pottery 

One more thing.  I'm thinking about leaving Etsy.   It pisses me off when I market myself on social media and Etsy re-directs my customers to other shops.  Really Etsy?  So I'm searching for a new selling platform.  Any suggestions, let me know.
  
For the time being, you can find my work at DirtKicker Pottery Etsy Shop

I wish everyone a blessed and beautiful Christmas and Awesome 2022!

Love to all,

Cindy

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Making slip for slip trailing on pottery

I've always loved adding slip trail details to my pottery.  I love the texture on the finished pots.    This is how I make my slip.  

Supplies:  
* Clay (I use the same clay body, that I use for making pots)
* A mixing cup or bowl
* Distilled water
* Immersion blender


I shred moist clay 
(helps with dust control


let it dry out completely


Put about 1 cup of distilled water in a mixing cup, then slowly add dry shredded clay until the clay stops absorbing water and a layer of dry clay accumulate above the water line.  Let the clay and water sit for 20 minutes.


Mix with the immersion blender until nice soft peaks happen.  


Store in a wide mouth air-tight container.


squeeze the air out of the slip trail bottle and submerge opening into slip to fill.




Now you're ready to rock the slip trailing.


Some of my recent slip trail work.




Hope you all are doing well!   

Love to all,
Cindy

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Love Coffee and Pottery?

I've been trying several different techniques for making Pour-over coffee makers.   I'm kind of obsessed with them at the moment.

I made a little YouTube video showing one of the ways to throw a pour-over.  Click the link and check it out!

LINK to YouTube Pour-Over video



This style I trim the drip catcher


This style, I trim and then throw a drip catcher





© cindy gilliland 2018



Thursday, July 28, 2016

Friday, April 29, 2016

Firing an Empty Kiln vs. Firing a Full Kiln / Kiln Tune-UP


My electric kiln is 10 years old and the thermocouples had never been replaced.  Last year I started making thermocouple adjustments to account for drift. So, when my elements wore-out I figured it was time for a little tune-up.


Cone results PRIOR to tune-up.
Kind of wack-a-do.

John and I replaced the elements, thermocouples, relays and 2 power terminals that had crumbled.   I ran an ^04 slow bisque to burn-in the elements.  Then I ran an empty ^5.5 slow glaze test-fire to confirm that the kiln was firing in the ballpark of my target temp.  

Cone results for ^5.5 Glaze test-fire 
of EMPTY kiln after tune-up.  

The Empty test-fire was a little warm, but still in the ballpark of ^5.5. 

Next, I fired a ^5.5 slow glaze test-fire loaded with pottery.

Cone results for ^5.5 Glaze test fire 
of FULLY LOADED kiln after tune-up.

The load fired on the hot side of ^5.5.  I'm going to make thermocouple adjustments to slightly cool all 3 sections.  Next glaze fire should be perfecto.

If you have ever asked the question.. Does an empty kiln fire hotter or cooler than a fully loaded kiln?   According to my testing, the results were very similar.

I probably should have titled this post "Tales of a Witness Cone Nerd".

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Magic Water Rocks My World

Magic water is my favorite joining agent for clay attachments.

  
great for handle attachments

"Magic Water" 1 quart recipe 
- 1 quart distilled water
- 2 + 1/4 tsp liquid sodium silicate
- 3/8 (1/4 + 1/8) tsp soda ash
Mix all ingredients in a quart size jar (I use an old Ovaltine container).  Then shake it up!
For my work, magic water and slow drying are the perfect combo for successful attachments.  I use primarily porcelain and smooth stoneware clay.



©cindygilliland2016.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

watercolor doodles and pottery design

My first blog post of the year.  It's been a slow start, but I'm sputtering along.

Along with my 4 sisters, I have been assisting with the care of my 93 year old Momma.  Caring for an elderly parent is difficult.  Dementia is setting in rapidly and it utterly breaks my heart to see her drifting away mentally and physically.

As always I have 3 of my Grand-sugars a couple days a week.  I plan to get them involved more in studio activities.  

Even though my time in the studio has been limited, I have gained a renewed appreciation for working with clay.  I savor every day that I get to be in the studio making pottery.

When I'm not in the studio, I still have thoughts of pottery swirling around in my head.   Sketchbooks are an awesome way for me to preserve those design ideas.
I like to use watercolor with my sketchbook doodles as a way to try-on color with design. I enjoy the unexpected effects of watercolor.  
5 sisters mug
by DirtKicker Pottery

Watercolor pencils are great because they're tidy to use and they travel well. 


I am still making pottery.  Very heartfelt pottery.   The process is just taking a while longer these days.

Love and peace to all in this new year.

All photos, content and designs are owned by and ©copyright Cindy Gilliland 2016.