Wednesday, May 30, 2012

EKiln Help!

Hi Clubbers!
My ekiln has been acting up and I need help figuring out how to proceed.  I basically only use it to bisque and it's a 4 year old Amaco (I'm the only owner).  I fire to cone 08 on 'slow'.  It has been firing to about 1400 degrees and then shutting off with the error message E1.  I just called Amaco and they said it is either a burnt out element, or broken relay.  How to I figure out which?  Help!

No Trim Goblet

Monday, May 28, 2012

Studio Mate NEEDED

come share a 700 sq ft studio space in historic Marshall High Studios, Marshall, NC. Beginning August. 30 minutes NW of Asheville.  Electric kiln and gas kiln on premises.  Email Emily:

Friday, May 25, 2012

Rhododendron calendulaceum

Nice orange azaleas on the Parkway!  

Rhododendron calendulaceum

But sometimes the nicest little flowers are in the parking lot snuggled in with the clover!

Reusable Non-Exploding Cone Packs

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Wrens Fledged

The little wrens I posted earlier in the nest finally fledged. Hope they made it!

They flew to the ground and then couldn't get back up to the nest so were in the kiln yard for a while (one day). I saw them huddled in a mass by the chimney. (must be American Immigrants)

Anyway, my concern was the neighbors 20 cats that run free and that they would get eaten like last year (in the glove of the sand blaster).

Side Handled Tea Pot

Hayne Bayless – Happiness is: A Warm Extruder & A Sassy Slab

Come spend five days honing your hand-building skills at Cullowhee Mountain Arts in Franklin, NC.

June 24—29, 2012
Medium: ceramics
Level: Intermediate to Advanced

In this workshop students will explore extrusion and slab techniques in the process of making functional stoneware. The approach will be to let the process show in the work, keeping in mind that by  keeping out of clay’s way, the material will reveal its true nature and the results will remain fresh and lively. Topics that will be covered are: cutting stencils from Tyvek; colored slip inlay and stretched slabs; liquid latex resist and deer-tail brushes; fashioning tools out of common materials and modifying existing ones to suit specific needs; and how to make custom extruder dies. This workshop will also interest throwers looking to expand their horizons beyond the wheel. 
“We will work with unconventional forming methods and unusual approaches to surface decoration. Myths will be busted and secrets revealed.” 

Weather Dog

Boo say says it is wet out!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Frit P-25 is going out of production Ferro 3269 sub

This is from the Highwater Clay Website:

The Fall of Frit P25 and the Rise of 3269

Once again an important ceramic material, frit P25, is going by the wayside. It seems as though this has been happening a lot lately! P25 is made by Pemco and they are getting out of the frit business. In anticipation of P25 being unavailable, Highwater Clays will stock Ferro frit 3269 as a replacement.  

                                                          P25                                              3269

Unlike feldspar and silica, frits are a manufactured material.  Commonly used by industrial ceramics, glass producers and potters alike, frits are comprised of raw materials such as alumina, sodium, silica, potassium, calcium and boron.  The raw materials are melted together until vitreous and then ground down to powder form.  Each frit has a specific formula and was designed for a specific need.  While there are thousands of frits available, potters generally use just a few different types.  Their low melting point makes for a valuable melting agent in glazes and promotes fusion to the clay body in underglaze and slip.  Certain frits can be used as a low fire glaze all by themselves and some potters even use them as a flux for clay bodies, although that gets a bit pricey.  The complex manufacturing process causes frit to be more expensive than other fluxes.

Frit formulations tend to be fairly standard across the industry and most have a readily available substitute.  However, there are slight differences in the chemical analysis of P25 and 3269 which could affect the fired quality of a glaze recipe.  As always, testing is recommended before firing up a whole glaze load and please contact us if you have any questions.

Monday, May 21, 2012

MICA Gallery opening!

Mica | Fine Contemporary Craft
is opening 
May 26, 2012, 10-6 pm

In Beautiful Bakersville NC.

Gallery Hours will continue:
Sunday - Saturday 10 - 6 pm

Save the date!
Join us for our 

Grand Opening Celebration: 
July 14, 2012, 5-8 pm

Current Mica Artists:
Jon Ellenbogen and Becky Plummer
Kent McLaughlin and Suze Lindsay
Gertrude Graham Smith
Susan Feagin
Cynthia Bringle
David Ross
Claudia Dunaway
Jenny Lou Sherburne
Shaunna Lyons
William Baker
Joy Tanner
Jacque Allen
Pablo Soto

Mica | Fine Contemporary Craft
37 N. Mitchell Ave.
Bakersville, North Carolina 28705

Phone:  828-688-mica (6422)

Gallery Hours:
Sunday - Saturday 10 am - 6 pm

Visit our Website:

Ceramics blog or Ornithological blog?

Guess I better do a pottery posting soon??!

Maybe Ron Philbeck's rat T-shirt will do?

Phoebe nest with eggs 2012

And finally, I swear... here is a Phoebe that nests on my porch and has been coming back regularly for at least 5 years.  Anyway, she like moss for here exterior coating!

Junco eggs 2012

Here is the best hidden and cutest nest of a Junco. Plus ...4 eggs?? Really - in this overcrowded world?  Must be type A or Catholic!

Carolina Wrens in nest 2012

Since we are on the topic of bird nests...Here are a couple of shots of come baby wrens in a nest by my kiln.  I was working - I swear!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Towhee Nest

Got this cute picture of a little Eastern Towhee nest.  Lots happening on the Roan. Robins, Redstarts, American   Woodcock, Chestnut sided Warbler, etc. etc.

Friday, May 18, 2012


Oh, hey I have been making some pots in between skunks, rain, and biking. You gotta live kids!


Excuse the quality of this photo but I didn't want to get TOO close to this little skunk. He is a weird little one who lives at the studio. 

Spring on the Parkway

Wet in NC 2012

Plenty of water to go around these days!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Claymakers . Bringle workshop May 19-20

A couple of spaces  available for  this hands on workshop  .919 530 8355  .Durham ,NC

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

New Gallery Opening!

fine contemporary craft
a cooperative artist gallery located in Bakersville, North Carolina

Opening May 26, 2012, 10-6 pm
Gallery Hours will continue: Sunday – Saturday 10 – 6 pm 
Join us for our Grand Opening Celebration July 14, 2012, 5-8 pm
37 North Mitchell Avenue
Bakersville, NC 28705

For years our community of artists and craftspeople have dreamed of having our own cooperative gallery, and now that dream is becoming a reality. After months of planning, preparation, and hard work, Mica will be opening its doors on May 26, 2012 in downtown Bakersville. Located in the beautiful mountains of western North Carolina in the heart of Mitchell County, Mica will feature the work of some of the area’s most creative artists in a casual and comfortable setting that is sure to become a destination for fine contemporary craft.

Current Mica Artists:
Barking Spider Pottery: Jon Ellenbogen and Becky Plummer
Fork Mountain Pottery: Kent McLaughlin and Suze Lindsay
Gertrude Graham Smith
Susan Feagin
Cynthia Bringle
David Ross
Shaunna Lyons
Joy Tanner
William Baker
Claudia Dunaway
Jenny Lou Sherburne
Jacque Allen
Pablo Soto

We hope to see you soon in our beautiful new gallery!