Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Teapot Carving

Happy Halloween. Instead of carving a pumpkin I am carving on my teapot. You see it was a bit heavier than I wanted. When I threw it I quit when I got to the point that the lid opening fit the lid that I threw. My clay is much more forgiving than I give it credit for and I could have pushed it some more. But I didn't. I quit when I got worried...

So I have a rather heavy pot. I am carving in it hoping that it will lighten up a bit. It will dry and get somewhat lighter also. I am trying to not be too hard on myself since after all, this is my first teapot...

I am very happy with the way the handle went on, I pulled it this morning and placed it in front of the heater vent so I could apply it to the teapot before I had to leave the house. YAY!

Caution, Teapot in Progress

Yesterday I started my teapot journey. I am so happy with my first attempt. I threw it kind of like the man, Tim, in the Utube video. First the lid (which is backward from the way I usually make lids)...then the spout and then the body. I must apply the handle today. I couldn't leave it alone this morning; as I removed the plastic from it I bumped the handle on the lid and made a boo-boo. I get angry at my own impatience! Now it will be ugly and all of that. Well, that's not so, it is a perfectly fine teapot so far....

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Samantha Phillips Gould

One of my interests is genealogy. I have traced my family back to pre-Revolutionary days following my mothers line. A cousin of my mothers in Montana had done quite a lot of research and had given it to my mother. Well, mom was a sharing person and she gave some to her sisters and didn't keep it all intact. I got a few pages and pieced a lot together and did a ton of research on my own. The intenet has so much misinformation that I couldn't trust it and did a lot of work at Sutro Library and spent a lot of money sending for copies of original documents.
This gravemarker is my 3rd great grandmother, wife of Nathan Gould whose father fought in the Revolutionary War as a private while in Massachusetts. My sister was interested in joining Colonial Dames and I supplied the proof for her. Some member mailed the documents that I supplied and she is a member now. I am hoping she will send me the copies of the paperwork that she submitted. I have asked her to do this, she is pretty busy though. I'll remind her in a week or so....
What I need right now is solid proof that Elijah Phillips (b. 14 Feb. 1759) in Ashfiled, Franklin Co., Mass., and Cynthia Goodwin (b.1766) in W. Hartford, CT had a daughter named Samantha - the same one mentioned here! Well, I would also like to have documentation on Cynthia Goodwins father, Uriah; he comes from a long line of Goodwins in Hartford starting with Ozeas...Ozeas was born in England and died and is buried in CT. He died 3 April 1683.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Carpenter in Need

Well, this is a departure for me. I read about KIVA, this organization that lends to extremely small businesses. Well, KIVA oversees the loans, indivuduals lend in $25.00 increments.

I want to lend to all of them of course, but what really got me was the man that wants to be a carpenter and needs money for tools and wood; just the essentials. He wants to make things. YAY - here is a person I connect with big time. So, anyway, I just wanted to plug something on my blog, not for myself but for some one else for a change. His name is Sisson and he lives in Togo. He needs $600.00, I hope he gets his carpentry business going and that he makes lots and lots of whatever he likes to make.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Teapot Throwing

Since one of my goals is to make a teapot before December I thought I would look up how other people do it! Well, this guys throws pretty fast so I am saving it on my blog to review. I can throw all of the pieces that go into the teapot, so theoretically I can make a teapot...
After watching this I wonder why I made this goal to make a teapot.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

All By Myself

One thing I like about my blog is that I can just ramble on and get my thoughts down. No one interrupts me and says I am wrong or that I shouldn't say that or that what I wrote wasn't very nice or anything at all. No one even says I am brilliant. That is one thing I like.

Here is another tile. I won't post all of them. But it's interesting to see them on my computer screen as if they are part of the story.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Plaster Mold

Well, tonight I poured a mold of a tile I made. It will be a couple of days before it is all set up enough to remove it from the plaster and inspect the mold. My tile is the 3 dragonfly design that I have hand painted using underglazes like the one in the picture. Have I shown this tile on my blog before? Probably, oh well, here it is again....
I like doing the 3 intertwined image designs, I don't know why. I look for them; so far all I have found is the dragonfly and I have a fish one I like too. My box of 50 bisque tiles is gone now so I can quit making them for a while.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Get Rich Quick

I got a pyramid letter in the mail and it tells me it is legal. I send $1.00 to the 6 people listed on the page and in turn mail 200 copies, etc., etc. This man, Dick Hollman says he has never failed to make $800,000.00 each mailing. Wow! I am thinking about sending the nice lady that mailed me this pyramid letter a sympathy card because I am not going to send her or anyone else on the list $1.00. I thought this went out of style in the 1950's. Guess not.

I am making tiles like crazy. I gotta let up or I'll start to hate them. A woman that takes ceramics classes with me said she is sick of her project. It is nearly finished and it will be beautiful but I know how she feels. I hope to sell these tiles for $25.00 - placed into a nice trivet even!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

How About Some Nice Green Onions?

Well, what is this? Green onions. I was in the mood to watercolor and I went to the market in Weirton, WV and I was looking for some nice colorful vegetables or fruit to paint. Honestly, how I ended up with green onions I don't know. Maybe I ate the strawberries on the way home...
I like to play with watercolors and I insist upon good heavy paper. I paint my picture and then I destroy it when I am done. I do have just a few; these onions are one of them.
My friend has started taking oil painting classes and she painted an outstanding pear. I haven't tried oils before but just looking at her pear and thinking about art on paper or canvas has me thinking it is time to break out the watercolors again. I bet they are all dried up and I would need new ones. Maybe it's best to stick with the clay.
I do wish my friend would start a blog and put her creations on the blog so we could just hop on over and see what the other one is doing!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Sam's Castle

This blue pitcher was thrown on my potters wheel and fired to stoneware temperature, it hold over 7 cups of liquid.

Everyone calls it The Castle or Sam's Castle. It is near me on the hill, actually, my place sits below the walls. Yes, there are great big walls all around it and no one can get in easily. There are numerous tales about it and some of them just have to be true I figure.

If I climb around out in back and dig in the dirt for a while I will uncover old broken bottles and plates and eeek - bones too. I like to think they are just animal bones....but, mowahaaaa, who knows for sure? (My tribute to Halloween).

Sam, who was the last owner of the castle is dead now. He didn't live in the castle full time, he lived in San Francisco. He worked in the old theaters; painting and refurbishing. Theaters and movies sets too I think. So he liked to collect the odd things being thrown out. Like a suit of armor; like that. He bought the castle and furnished it with his odds and ends. The outside is much more impressive than the inside; it really isn't all that wonderful inside.

Anyway I met Sam and his wife Mary at a dinner party; there were about 10 of us there and Sam was asked something about his castle and this is the story that came out.

Sam was single and he bought this castle and it had almost nowhere to park. Nearby was a small plot of land that he wanted to purchase so he could have a parking lot. He contacted the woman that owned this parcel asking to buy it but she refused to sell, she said she wouldn't sell to him because he was in the Mob. Well, he and his girlfriend were pretty serious and marriage was in the works. Before they married, his girlfriend, Mary approached the woman to buy the parcel of land near the castle and the owner happily sold it to her. Mary and Sam got married and had their place to park. They all lived happily ever after. The End.

The hostess at the dinner party said, "Sam, is this true? That you were in the Mob?" Sam just smiled at her and said, "Well, what do "you" think?"

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Saying Goodbye

It's sometimes difficult to know when to stop something. Especially if you keep thinking it is a good thing that you need. Then a good/bad thing happens and your decision is practically made on its own. I was part of a group and suddenly people behind the scenes starting coming up with really terrific new rules. I do mean they were good and they needed to be put into place. All of a sudden -bam- in your face, no explanations, no discussion, just a few people pulling strings and making executive decisions for everyone. Sad to go but when I look at it, it wasn't getting me anywhere really anyway. Oh, sure there were a few laughs but it was a waste of time and energy on the whole. They are a nice group of people and I wish them well. I feel kind of free today.
This is some Afghan Jade I purchased about a year ago. I've used quite a bit of it already. It wasn't costly and I just love the way it looks and feels. Just for fun I put this string on my neck and was told I looked like Betty Flintstone!! I have combined the stones with red coral and it looks great.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Thinking About Pottery

I like to make these small, narrow butter dishes, the same as I like to make fish. This particular one has a crackled glaze which means you shouldn't use it for wet food - only dry food. Wet food can get into the cracks and bacteria can form even when you think they are clean. So don't eat wet stuff from pottery with cracks in the glaze.

Yesterday the thought popped into my head that I haven't made any baskets for a while. Ceramic baskets that is. I throw almost any shape pot and add a big handle across the top. Some are short and fat and others look very strong and vertical. Others are just happy ones. I think I will make some baskets.

The gas kiln is nearly full, it will be fired next Thursday probably. Then it will be a few days before it can be opened. Those are impatient days.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

The Tile I Made During Magical Times

This is my fish tile. I made it last week and got it out of the kiln a couple of days ago. I talked to my hair lady today, she colors me and cuts and encourages me to make things. What we talked about was going legal - you know like getting a business license and a tax id number and being a responsible adult conducting business in a professional manner.
I felt like throwing myself on the ground and kicking and screaming; I admit it, I don't want to grow up and do it right. It is not paying what is due the government that irks me, it is keeping track of things spent and did I really make any money, because the answer is probably NO. I just want to make things and I'd think I'd rather give them away than keep track of expenses. Sure, I'll gladly pay taxes on what piddling amount I make just don't make me grow up....

Monday, October 1, 2007

Nine One One

Sometimes I dream of calling 911. I have never called 911 yet I am quite sure that if I should need to that my phone line will be dead or I cannot even find the phone and if the phone is found and the line is working that no one will answer; EVER or I will be put on hold and no one will come on the line...EVER.

I am probably thinking about these dreams because there was something in the Sunday paper - the Parade thing which I rarely even look had an article about when you should call 911 or when you should NOT call 911. Of course, I had to take a look. Funny none of the situations mentioned men with knives awakening you and horrible things happening. I did learn that if someone is poisoned you should call only if there is difficult breathing or a person is just seems like a good time to call anyway but apparently it's not...
Today I am putting some of my fish on display at Fog City Java. Fish and this other thing I made that I don't know what to call. You see, I have several books in the Griffin and Sabine series of books. I saw one at the library sale so I bought it just because I like them so much and on the way home I started to think about liberating the story from its binding. Setting it free if you like! I ran with it....I made 4 panels of the story. I know it is weird.