Friday, October 30, 2009

Green Hill Center for NC Art

Is anyone participating in the Winter Show at Green Hill? If so, could I send my pieces with you? I could supply money for gas and/or pick the pieces up when the show is finished. Just let me know.

Thank you,


Free Workshop

Hi everybody! I will be doing a two hour demo at Crabtree Creek Floral tomorrow, Saturday. Come on over and say Hi if you're out and about. I have a bunch of pots that I'm going to decorate using my black wax!

It will take place from 2-4p.m.

North Carolina Artists Grants

The North Carolina Individual Artist's Grant are due by Nov. 2, 2009. You can apply on-line but you also have to send a hard copy by mail by Nov. 2, 2009.

John Britt

Mitchell County Newspaper?

Hey fellow NC folks. If you live in the Mitchell county area and happen to have last weeks paper laying around could ya save a copy for me? I just found out that they ran an article about the residents at the EnergyXchange on the 21st (or maybe the 28th?) and no one got a copy. We like to keep copies of stuff like that in the office. Thanks!


Snake in the Grass

Can you identify this snake I saw on the Parkway yesterday.

John Britt


I was out riding on the Parkway yesterday...still really nice.

But I came across the look out and it talked about how the Clinchfield Railroad was made and ... So I thought I would include it here.

It is just amazing how the stuff we take for granted was to hard to accomplish!

Ginger Carrot Bread

Ginger Carrot Bread

3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup carrot juice
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a loaf pan. Set aside.In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, oil, eggs, vanilla, and carrot juice. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, ginger, baking powder, and salt. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture, whisking just to combine. Fold in the walnuts.Pour batter into prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean, 45 to 55 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool in pan 10 minutes, then invert loaf onto rack to cool completely. Slice just before serving.I also add about a half cup of grated carrot to the batter as well as some chopped crystallized ginger. Mmmmmm.

Marian Parkes

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Shake and Bake

I just put up that Frank Boyden Shino recipe because I returned from several workshops in St. Louis and some people wanted the recipe.

I did a Reed Handle Making Workshop at Krueger Pottery Supply which also turned into a general glaze discussion and basic throwing demo.

Krueger is a great place to visit because they are very nice ...but also they have FREE workshops !! Check it out.

I also did a day at St. Louis Community College/ Meremac for Jim Ibur's classes. They really have a huge selection of kilns/glazes, techniques, etc. Jim is really working it!

But the real reason I was there was that Jill Foote/Hutton invited me to come to East Central College to talk/demo at her class. She was a great host and is really trying to improve her program for her students. She set everything up for me and picked me up and basically treated me like a rock star! Even red M&M's in a glass bowl!

Anyway here is another Shake and Bake only this time I put on extra ash,

John Britt

Easy as ABC

Well, it is finally here...the ABC store in Mitchell County, NC! Opened today.

Frank Boyden Shino

FRANK BOYDEN'S SHINO Cone 10 Reduction
30.00 Kona F- 4 Feldspar
25.00 Spodumene
8.00 Nepheline Syenite
25.00 Kentucky Ball Clay
5.00 EPK Kaolin
7.00 Soda Ash

1.75 Synethic Red Iron Oxide

Dip pot and while it is still wet, sprinkle some sieved wood ash on the side. Fire to cone 10 in reduction and have a heavy peak reduction at cone 10 for about half an hour.

John Britt

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Great Dorito Experiment

When I was in college, a fellow BFA student claimed that he had fired a Dorito to cone 10 and found orange dust when he opened the kiln. Fact or fiction?

While the Spicy Nacho Cheese Dorito I fired did not leave orange dust, it did leave some color on the shelf as well as pitting the kiln wash. I haven't eaten one since.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Cone 6 is the New Black

I just finished unloading my third cone 6 reduction load and am tickled pink! Not only am I pleased with the pots, but I like finshing a firing my mid-afternoon instead of dinnertime.

I tested a few more glazes and am pretty psyched at how nice some of the glazes are. I've had several cone 10 glazes, including a Temmoku, turn out just as nice in cone 6, well maybe to almost cone 7. The two tiles on the right are a copper red, alone (far right) and with Leach's Satin Clear on top (middle).
I'm firing another cone 6 load next week!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Cracked Greenware

Can anyone offer any guidance in repairing a cracked handle on a bone-dry piece? Under normal circumstances, I would not bother to repair a cracked piece. However, the piece in question took upwards of 20 hours to make, and the break is very clean.

Online I have found remedies such as magic water, spooze and paper clay. Any success stories? Any dismal failures or dashed hopes?

Monday, October 19, 2009

Julia Terr Foundation for Ceramic Arts

A new foundation in support of the ceramic arts has been created in the memory of potter and friend Julia Terr. The foundation will provide funds to programs across the country devoted to the promotion of ceramic arts, in particular non-profit organizations supporting the field of studio pottery. The first project the foundation will help fund is to refurbish a kiln at Penland, where Julia studied ceramics.

Tax-deductible contributions for the foundation can be sent to:

The Julia Terr Foundation for Ceramic Arts
P.O. Box 575
Cloverdale, CA 95425

Julia was a wonderful person whose enthusiasm for clay and life was instantly memorable. Those who knew her will never forget her and those who didn't now have the opportunity to share in her passion for clay. If you are inclined to offer support to the betterment of the ceramic arts in all communities, a donation to the Julia Terr Foundation for the Ceramic Arts is certainly a wonderful way to do it.

For more information please visit: http//

Dayton Visual Art Center

Anyone in the Dayton Ohio area, I have some pots in the upcoming Holiday Show at The Dayton Visual Art Center:
John Britt

General Shale

The General Shale Brick Company is one of the sponsors and commissioned this sculpture using their bricks.

Another good reason to check it out,
John Britt

Gray Museum, Tennessee

If anyone is headed north on 26 out of Johnson City TN, check out the Gray Museum. They have some amazing fossils that are totally unique to this area.

I am not an expert, but in a nutshell, about 4 years ago, they were building a highway and then stumbled across this clay deposit and some bones. They had to stop building the road, because you can't build a road over a clay pit, due to the excessive shrinkage and expansion of the ground. So they investigated the bones and found out that they were fossils of animals that fell into the pit and die many years ago.

It is an amazing place to find in Grey Tennessee! And some amazing fossils!

John Britt

Last sign of the Apocalypse


Get ready, because this is the last sign of the Apocalypse....An ABC store in Mitchell County, NC!

First Show on the Roan

We had our first snow showers on the Roan Saturday/ Sunday.

It was in the 20's last night and some frost.

Should make for some more nice tree colors this week!

John Britt

Artist in Atlanta

If anyone has seen this man, who is wanted in connection with a string of convenience store....

Oh, wait a minute, that is Kyle Carpenter getting serous on his way home from the Asheville in Atlanta show.

The show is still happening and is a real beauty if you get the chance .....

At MudFire ,

John Britt

Thursday, October 15, 2009

ac-cen-tu-ate the positive ...

you've got to

ac-cen-tu-ate the positive

e-li-mi-nate the negative

latch on to the af-firm-a-tive

and don't mess with mr. in-between

I can't find John Hartom!

Help! Having only lived here for 18 months, I am among the directionally challenged. Although I did not get hopelessly lost, I was unable to find John's studio to drop off some bowls for either of Friday's Empty Bowls Events. Can someone give me clear and concise directions? I'm headed back out this afternoon, but then I'm grounded until Friday afternoon.

Thank you!!!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands

The Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands is this week, Thursday to Sunday. There are a lot of potters in this particular October show. It's held at the Asheville Civic Center. 200 Exhibitors.
I'll be in BOOTH 105 with two kiln loads of pots. Come get two!
-Kyle Carpenter

Monday, October 12, 2009

What is this world coming to?

Highwater no longer has Saturday hours? And today they are completely out of Zella Stone and not expecting to have it back in stock until week's end? I'm nearly out. Does this mean I have to start slaking down some of the Ellen Buff I got from Henry Pope? That was going to be my winter project.

Wednesday Clay Club meeting directions to Shambhala Pottery

From Bakersville (at the light), head east on Mitchell Ave (also called Cane Creek Rd. It's the same road that Shane Mickey and Gay Smith are on). Go exactly 3 miles to the 2nd Sandy Branch Road (don't take the first one).Take a left on to Sandy Branch (it's right after you come off the bridge). Go a few hundred feet and look for a group of mailboxes on the right. (we're 1454 Sandy Branch rd). At the mailboxes, take a left on to the paved driveway and stay left, and follow the paved section up the hill about 400 feet to the house and studio.

If you can, bring a folding or other chair. I only have enough seating for 6 in the studio.

If you need more information - feel free to call me at 688-3860

October Clay Club 2009

Just a reminder that the Clay Club meets this Wednesday October 14th, 2009 at 6:30 p.m. We will meet at June Perry's Studio .

The food is whatever you like and June will show you a few of her pots, some of her amazing collection and discuss future potential topics and venues of the spectacular North Carolina Club Club.

If you need directions contact June at :

June Perry <beinjoy@VERIZON.NET>

or Google her studio and there is a map.

or you can call me at 828-467-5020 but I will be unable to attend as my mom is ill.

John Britt

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Strange Rainbow!

Happened to look straight up while hanging out in the yard this afternoon. I've never seen anything like this. There was a little haze just to the left, but most of the sky was very clear.

Spruce Pine Potters Market!

Don't miss out on some incredible pots! Come out and visit us on the final day of the Spruce Pine Potters Market 2009 show! We will be at the Cross Street building in Spruce Pine NC from 10 to 5 today. For more information check out our website at: Hope to see you there!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Nice cone 6 combo

Here is the final Todd Johnson piece!
Haynes Satin on the bottom. Then Floating Blue over Broken Celadon. It has a clear liner.

Nice cone 6 Glaze combo

Here is another piece by Todd Johnson.

Haynes Satin, with Moss Green over Broken Celadon.

Give it a try and let us know know it goes.

Google the recipes but if you have trouble let me know and I can post them but I am sure they are on -line.

John Britt

Nice Cone 10 Glaze combo

This is a piece of Todd Johnson who lives in Asheville. He was in my class at Odyssey and pulled out this beauty on the last night.

It is Wertz Shino at the bottom and then Spodumene Glaze on the top with Yellow salt over. Cone 10 reduction fired.

Give it a try and let us know know it goes.

All the recipes are in my book or you can Google them and you will find them on line or you can buy the Odyssey Glaze Book from Highwater.

If you have trouble let me know and I can post them but I am sure they are on -line.
John Britt

Asheville-in-Atlanta Show

I am packing for the Asheville-in-Atlanta opening which is Saturday night:

If anyone is in the area, I have some nice oil spots and peach bloom pieces that are reasonably priced.

Hope to see you there,

John Britt

World's Best Carrot Cake

Oh, and while you are there stop in the "World's Best Carrot Cake" store.

Great carrot cake! And many varieties!

John Britt

Mexican Food!

If you haven't tried the Taqueria Fast in Asheville should. It is just north of the lake on Merrimon.

John Britt

Thursday, October 8, 2009

the prettier sides of life

After the LAST post, I just had to put this up to refresh our minds! Ahh...sunsets...there are nicer things out there than feet and toenails.

This is up on Beauty Spot, a purty little place not too far from us Bakersvillians, just on the NC and TN border towards Erwin, TN, along the Appalachian Trail.

There, now doesn't that feel better?

(If you are reading this and have NOT read the post below, warning, don't proceed any further! Beware!!! This post is much better!)

Actually, after writing this I remembered another popular AT spot, called Charlies Bunion...not so beautifully named, but another great view in the Smokies and right along with John Britt!

Ingrown Toe Nails (The Cure)

I usually try not to show disgusting stuff on this page but it has come to my attention that some people are suffering unnecessarily! And this is still within the concept of "methods and practices", (a.k.a. the recipe method).

I only know this because when I was 12 or 13 I had really bad ingrown toe nails. I mean really bad!! Infected, oozing, red and PAINFUL ingrown toe nails. This was exacerbated by snotty nosed prepubescent little shits who, once they found out I had bad toes, would stomp on them.

So off I went to the doctor who said, no problem we will just remove the nail and it will grow back fine.

The phrase, "just remove the nail", in no way does justice to the horror and pain of a rusty old pliers and a couple of stiff yanks.

So after the screams and night sweats subsided, I waited for the nail to grow back like he said. But, unfortunately it grew back the same as it ever was. A painful oozing mess!

So I went to new doctor because the other ass wipe said he could try it again, for FREE! I may have been 12 and did not have a bunch of letters behind my name, but I wasn't as stupid as he was.

Well, this new doctor, who was intelligent and sensible, was familiar with the laws of cause and effect so when something did not work he would not continue doing it! He said that there was no need to remove the nail! Just put cotton under the nail and keep it clean and it will be better in a week or so.

I did that and he was right! It was about as close to a miracle as I have ever seen. Two weeks and you just press the cotton into and under the nail and it acts as a ramp to keep the nail from cutting into the skin and it allows it to heal and the the nail grows on the ramp until all is fine.

I have been doing this for about 40 years and I never had the problem again. Whenever it gets tender, I just stuff in the cotton.

I think you can follow the photos and I guarantee it will make your life better!

Try it and see.

***(Alternatively you can cut a "v' notch in the center of your nail and theoretically that will allow it to grow more toward the center. But I have found that to be a lie.)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

This Friday

Opens in conjunction with French Broad Friday, Friday October 9 with a reception from 6-9pm.
Other French Broad Friday events include artist receptions at Zuma Coffee- International Photography and the Madison County Arts Council-"Seeing through the Eye of a Hummingbird," live street concert featuring the Swingsters, "Cars," showing at Good Stuff and a rummage sale.

Asheville in Atlanta 2009

So, once again, I travel to Atlanta, GA, to help represent the pottery scene that encompasses Western North Carolina. This year, "Asheville in Atlanta" includes pots by JohnBritt, Jennifer Hoolihan, Karen Newgard, Lindsay Rogers, and Kyle Carpenter. What a diverse line-up. The MudFire Gallery offers a sneak-peek at the show via facebook video seen here. If you're in the Decatur area, join us Saturday night for a nice opening reception. Cheers, mates. Now, only thing I have to do tonight is watch the PBS Craft in America. Word-up.

Nice Combo

Here is a nice pot and glaze combo by Celeste Baldwin who is in the Odyssey class.

She used Val's Blue and then took a leaf stencil and held it on the pot and then brushed on Yellow Salt (one coat). It gave a very nice soft surface and showed the leaf really well.

She then went back and added the black glaze for the stem.

Here is:

Val's Blue cone 10
39 Custer Feldspar
24 Dolomite
25 EPK
11 Silica
2 Whiting
2 Gerstley Borate

0.10 Cobalt Carbonate
0.25 Chrome Oxide
0.50 Manganese Dioxide

I won't list Yellow Salt because everyone has it.

John Britt

I love soda!

But not here:

I've got this oval serving dish out of my last firing that turned out great on the outside, but inside I've got a soda ash drip that has ruined the piece. It dropped down from the bottom of the shelf that was hanging above it during the firing. It's not fully melted and has open pinholes in it. I know I could refire the piece to melt it because I've done that before to cone 10 soda and it has worked. But I wonder if it would melt at an earlier temperature, at bisque temps? cone 6? Any thoughts?