Friday, May 22, 2015

Wall Pocket Tile

Here's an experimental wall pocket tile from the latest firing. I didn't hang it on the wall because I didn't want to put more holes in the wall or the posts outside. The two holes I've provided will make the piece stable mounted on an exterior wall even in the wind.

Basically this is a tile with a pocket for flowers or a plant. I purposely designed the piece asymmetrically. I plan to make more of these. This piece is glazed with the same glaze used on the large bowl and the yunomi in the previous post. All three turned out completely different. This wall pocket tile was on the bottom shelf, the yunomi on the middle shelf and the bowl on the top shelf. Stay tuned for more new work. Thanks for reading and for all your comments.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Always Room for Improvement

12 x 12 x 4 inches

This is probably the nicest large bowl I've ever made. But next week I might tell  you the same thing about another bowl. That's just how it is, there's always room for improvement.

I overlapped the same glazes with this bowl as the yunomi (tea bowl) below and expected gold highlights but the bowl was on the top shelf and what I planned didn't materialize. The bowl is made with speckled stoneware and the yunomi below with white stoneware. Using different clay makes quite a bit of difference with the glazes.

This is the nicest yunomi (tea bowl) I've ever made but again next week it might not be. This is pinched and textured and glazed with multiple glazes.

3.25 x 3.25 x 3 inches

I'm experimenting with overlapping several glazes with these pieces and each one is different. I've learned the top shelf of the kiln doesn't produce the same results as the lower shelves. Not only is there always room for improvement but there is always something new I learn with each firing.

4 x 4 x 1 inches

I tried a new glaze combination for one of my meditation bowls and even though it's the same glass I've used on others the color fired deep blue rather than aqua. More to come so stay tuned. Thanks for reading and for all your comments.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Planting Season

It's planting season here. Before clay my one true passion was gardening. I decided to get back into gardening as much as I'm able. Gary set a table up in the back yard so I don't have to bend down and I've started some seeds. Remember the North Georgia candy roaster squash from the farmer's market last year? I saved the seeds and started a few of those. How about the Cherokee black beans I was given? I started those seeds too. I also started some orange ornamental sunflowers called Autumn Beauty.

Gary helped by doing all the inground planting including herbs and perennials. Look at this lavender it's already blooming and it's so fragrant. Did you know I had a lavender farm in California? It was called Springville Lavender Gardens and I've left the blog up for reference so click the link if you'd like to know more.

We put in a few heirloom tomatoes along this wall, Black Crim, Cherokee Purple, Mr. Stripey, and an heirloom yellow. I plan to stake them up against the wall when they get too big. They're already getting flowers.

I also found a tomato I grew in California (photo of those I grew) and have been looking for ever since. It's called Juliet. It's shaped like a roma but smaller and pointed on the end and grows in clusters. It's perfect for salads.

Slice it in half and it stays firm enough to withstand tossing like it did in the unusual Mediterranean Pasta Salad I developed using Juliet tomatoes. I found the Juliet plant seedlings by Bonnie Farms at my local Walmart. I highly recommend this tomato.

 Mother nature planted wild flowers on our back hillside.

Here is the beginning of a perennial flower garden. It doesn't look like much now but hopefully it will fill in with lots of flowers by the middle of summer.

One of the plants in the garden is an ornamental grass, this one is Golden Japanese Forest Grass. Finally I have a glaze load firing. Tomorrow I'm working at the gallery so please stay tuned for the kiln opening. Thanks for reading and for all your comments.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Gray Tree Frog Serenades Me

For the last two days I've been serenaded by a tree frog on my front porch but I couldn't seem to find him. Finally I noticed this gray tree frog, hyla versicolor, hiding on the ledge of the eave. I had to stand on a stool and use the flash to get a good photo. He has his eyes closed more than he normally would probably due to the flash. He's about two inches long.

He makes up for his small size with quite loud call. I don't mind; I feel like I'm living in a jungle tree house. Here's a video of what his call sounds like. Just as I was about to shut down my computer last night I glanced out to see if the frog was still there. I didn't see him.

I ran outside and saw the frog was hopping down the ledge. I ran for my camera to take more photos. Notice the underside of his leg is brightly colored, that's to scare predators.

Look at the pads on his toes, no wonder he can climb so well.

Then he hopped down on the deck. He looks much smaller when he isn't resting on the ledge of the eave. Good bye little frog and good night. Thanks for reading and for all your comments.