Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Finally one that is right

The Shasta Daisies look a bit pale since the turquoise glaze isn't as dark as another glaze would have been.
But I like the overall design.  What do you think?

Today's quote:

People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light within.
Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

More glaze problems

This little vase had lots of problems from the outset.  It was not thrown that well, and was too heavy (thick walls). So I kind of shaved them off, and carved out some heart shapes.  I still thought there was something kind of cute and rustic about it.

Glazed the hearts red, then waxed them, then dipped the whole thing in the vat of Matt Black glaze.

Off to the kiln, and after doing cone 6, I was pretty ok with it. One side is alright.

But the other side is missing the black glaze on a long streak.  Either waxed by mistake (which I should have seen when I dipped it and cleared the black off the hearts) or the black dry glaze was scraped off while sitting on the shelf or being loaded.  It's not anything I really have any control over.  But I do like somethings about this...seeing how the carving helps the black glaze break...kind of interesting.

No I no longer get upset when my pottery isn't perfect.  I may strive to do the best I can, but I long ago learned it's out of my hands at a certain point.
Today's quote:
Heaven and Earth are threads from one loom.
Shaker proverb

Monday, June 27, 2016

Not so happy about this one

Yesterday I shared some cute vases which just came out of the kiln.  In the very same firing were a couple of "learning opportunities."  There were good things, and not-so-good things in the glazing.

First, I wanted to have a bluebird, which I carefully painted.  But the colors I sellected of Mayco Stroke & Coat came out garish, and not at all the way I intended.  I need to mute them quite a bit.  Blue should be close to the color of yesterday's vases, kind of light sky blue.  And the orange on the breast needs to be just a pale hint of orange, not traffic cone orange.  So those are things to correct on my next one, and there sure will be another one.

Second, the crawling of the glaze from the lip.  Oh my.  I had just finished this before the firing, but it was completely dry, and well covered with glaze.  I even had waited quite a while before dipping the exterior for final time because it was slow to dry.  However, apparently my mistake was either 1) putting glaze on the inside and not waiting until it was completely dry before starting the outside, or 2) the edge was thin and dried faster than the rest of the body, somehow that caused the glaze to crawl away from it.

Today's quote: (I've decided how important our words are, and thus am again sharing some thoughts which I believe are worth considering, as well as pottery!)

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Black Eyed Susan smiles

Some small vases, just right for intimate dinner tables...well these are doing well, I think. (5 inches high, 4.5 inches across.)

A pitcher shape without a handle. But if you wish to pick it up, the little knobs of the black centers will help you hold easily onto this Black Eyed Susan pitcher!

A simple vase form with those little beads of black centers on the Susans.

Each of these new forms just came out of the kiln this week.  (I'll need to add them to my page "New Things!)

 I'm not currently doing Etsy, just email me if you're interested in either of these, I'm holding these back from the Tailgate Market at this time, but I'd love them to go to their forever home through the net.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Some more photos from Willis TX

1915 tomato farmers were bringing their crop to the rails in Willis, TX

And the following clipping is a 1887 news story about vigilante justice in Willis, TX - a bit of wild west law

The Old Woodbridge Boarding House in Willis, TX.

In the late 1800s, a school for all ages, some students were housed in nearby dormitories.  The school building is gone now, but a historic marker and the school bell are nearby still.

 The Willis water tower.

In the Longmire area of Willis, a couple of homesteaders take a water break from plowing.  The couple are Homer and Delfia Calfee, photo taken around 1900.

The King Hotel, popular for train travelers from late 19th century to early 20th century.  I'm pretty sure this is a different building from the one depicted in a previous post Here. 

Friday, June 24, 2016

Babies in my dreams

Brand new babies. Well one anyway, in my dream this morning.
 new born baby asleep (posed by model) Photo: Alamy (library picture)

Can it have anything to do with the bird that seems to always wake up around 4 am and trill constantly, like a crying baby?

I was so adept at caring for this new life, in my dream. I cuddled, cleaned, fed, swaddled, burped, and knew just the right things to do for the tiny creature, a complete human being so new to this world.
I was really good at it, I remembered the feeling when I woke up.  It's been many (ahem) years since I had my own newborns.
 Original file ‎ (3,008 × 2,000 pixels, file size: 743 KB, MIME type ...

Once awake and remembering the feelings from the dream...I started thinking "perhaps I could get a job or volunteer to help with newborn babies as a relief for their parents."

  There are lots of sleepy new parents out there who wouldn't mind giving up that 2 am feeding to someone else...though of course I'm happy to hand the newbie over to the nursing mom after the diaper has been changed.

But wait, there's a reason I don't care for little babes, or even big ones. The menacing hacking sound of my cough from asthma and bronchiectasis. I forget it 'cause I carry it around in my back pocket, always coming out at inconvenient moments, and it only surprises new people when it comes out with its suddenness and loud bark. 

Its chronic bronchiectasis. See Wikipedia HERE. It doesn't mean I have anything catching, and the people who know me have gotten used to it by now. But when I walked through a crowd last weekend and coughed (while covering my mouth of course) I was looked at askance by a man who had had his back to me, who turned and looked "was I going to give him some germ or another? Why wasn't I in a hospital at least?"  That look.

So I can dream, anyway. And smile at the tenderness of newborns. Let's see, if ever my grandchildren who are adults partner up with someone, there might be a baby born into my family again...maybe.

I'm adding my dream to Sepia Saturday this week.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Awe drat

There is something that I carry around in my back pocket all the time.  Bronchiectasis (See Wikepedia here.)

Tuesday I started coughing at around 2 pm.  I was doing whatever I usually do, being in a clay studio with other students. Then it go worse, so I left when I was disturbing others with frequent uncontrollable loud coughs.

A new rose with just line work and a gray background.

I kept doing what I usually do, just stayed away from other people as much as I could.
But by the time I didn't eat much for dinner, and tried to watch my news and Jeopardy, I suddenly had chills, and my fingers were shaking too much to hold the remote, or a book to read.
So under all the covers I went.  And I took some Tylenol.
An hour later the fever hadn't gone down, but the shakes were manageable.
I stayed under covers.
Three hours later more Tylenol because the fever was still there. Each time I inhaled I heard the bubbly noise of my lungs, and if I went for a deep breath it triggered coughing.

A coat of matt clear goes over the glaze work

This just hit me suddenly.  I then spent the night tossing and coughing and taking my temp whenever I felt like it.  My last one was around midnight and I said, what the heck...I'm either going to get better or not, but I'm tired of keep track of things.

So when I awoke this morning I was achey from all the coughing, all those muscles in my ribs are complaining.  And my throat is a bit sore.  But there's no more runny nose or coughs every 5 minutes, and I can inhale totally without creating a coughing spasm.  And of course no fever either.

But I called the doctor and am going in and getting antibiotics (probably).  I hate what they do to the rest of my system...but I sure know when a fever hits me like this, I had better do something about it.

Then I remember the first 20 years of my life I had no medicine.  I didn't even get vaccinated for polio.  Yep, I was one of those "excused for religious reasons."  I know I got sick often, and would sometimes still go to school, or perhaps go lie on the bed in the ladies room in the office where my mother worked (also at the same private school without any medical treatments.)

So I have shown all those germs a thing or two, by surviving this long.  Now I'll happily take the help of my doc! Though I have to be a work-in and wait a long time in the waiting room, but I think this is one time that my weaknesses are right there over the edge, waiting to pounce.

PS, the vase was dipped in Matt Bronze Green glaze after the painted area was waxed completely.  It's waiting for the next glaze kiln. The last one was full of disappointments.  I'll show you soon.