Day Job


Pork Dumpling Filling

Pork Dumpling Filling

1 1/2lb ground pork (Asian grocers course grinds all the tasty fatty bits mixed in with the meat)

1tbs ground ginger

4 cloves minced garlic

4 chopped scallions

4 tbs soy

4 tbs sesame oil

5 cups shredded cabbage

1 beaten egg

1/2 cup Shredded carrots

1 tbs honey

Steam in basket for 20 minutes and add to soup or fry and steam as an apitizer.

Studio Notes

Yesterday it was put forward that the original design’s floral motifs were solid blocks of color. The new designs were more open and busy. 

I was wondering if the dynamic could be shifted again by filling in the flowers with a sponged on cobalt slip.

Just seeing what blue on blue does should be worth the effort. The real question mark is whether the slip will peel away from the underglaze. 

GhostBloom Revisited

The starting point for this series of cups is a piece from this spring’s test firings.

What is it?

Why do I like it?

What needs to happen?

“GhostBloom” 2017

It’s an alluring ghost flowered chawan. Lots of character…. The specckeled clay body blasts through all the surface layers, the blue underglaze, willie’s #6 tile slip, and the SAG glaze all are tied together from the body outwards. The big element of the piece is the soft matt surface of the SAG glaze. (Many would call it problematic, but watching pretty much everyone that has picked up this work absentmindedly pet it, convinces me that I wasn’t barking up the wrong tree by pursuing  surface texture.) The simplicity of the double headed bloom design made me smile too. The blocky stencils made a strong positive vs negative balance, and while I enjoy what happens when I follow the design around the piece, (it makes me feel good inside), I want to see what happens as the flowers are more styleized. 

Cut paper stencils
I’d like to know it it shifts the design away from simple, moving it more towards noise, or if it creates something different and unanticipated.
The second slip layer has been applied and waiting to Bryan a bit past tacky before the third layer is applied.

The flowers were originally fields of blue, now they are essentially lakes of white rimmed by blue. (Maybe a solution is to fill in the flower stencils with blue slip before peeling the paper.)

This round will get a 50/50 cobalt stain wash before being glazed and fired to cone 6-7. (note… the last layer was supposed to be a hakeme layer, but the slip bucket literally ran dry.)

(Studio note: Use a Cone 6 Malcolm Davis Shino to glaze a few of these, waxing in firefly halos to direct soda flashing just to tell the story properly.)

Willie’s 6 Tile Slip

Cone 6 to cone 10+ greenware white base slip 

9.8 Nepheline Syenite

68.63 #6 Tile Kaolin

1.96 Bentonite

4.71 Grolleg

4.90 Flint

This white slip has been my go to base slip for cut paper stencil work for the past 3 years. I have no idea where the recipe originated from… but it’s dependable for thin applications, thick hakeme brushwork, or for building up layers without peeling off. It’s been repeatedly tested from cone 5 to 11 in electric, gas, soda, and wood, all with very satisfactory results.

Mix it up thick and defloculate it with a dash of sodium silicate. Color with oxides or mansion stains 3% – 10%.

Apply to greenware wet to leather hard.

Works well with other slips, but doesn’t adhere dependability to underglazes.

The Cisiphis Condition 

Dear Jim, 

It’s a another day. 

I just keep pushing that rock up the hill. 
According to the script, I’ll be back tomorrow, waiting at the bottom, staring at the same rock… the same hill.

At least, at the end of the day, with a little applied hope, I get to sit on top of my rock and dream.

Sunday Katchup August 20 2017

Instagram posts and studio notes…

A local professor recently asked her circle of friends, “What were makers favorite points in their processes?”

The obvious answer is “all of it”, but I think for me, the real answer is “any point that embodies potential”. The word that I’m obviously grasping for is “Hope”. Any point where action meets my daydreams and I get to lean back in my chair and bask in hope for any and all potential futures… That’s my favorite point in the process.

Jess has been busy experimenting with linoleum block printing and I’ve been watching and learning. Seeing the design emerge from the block is fascinating. What first appears to be flimsy thin lines when cut, become strong and bold once inked. It’s that boldness that’s pulling me in.

The really engaging part was inadvertently backing into written discussions on the aesthetics and politics of the arts. First with R.G. Collingwood’s 1932 collection of essays “The Pricipales of Art” and William Morris’s 1888 7 lectures, specifically chapter 5, “The Aims of Art”.