Archive for August, 2009

Bright White Clay…

August 9, 2009

It was a banner day yesterday… Sofia and I had some breakfast and walked the dog before the heat rushed in. She was invited to play with a friend down the street so I waited for her to come home before unloading the bisque. She put on her duct taped flip flops and went down into the netherworld of the basement with me. Here she’s cleaning one of her tiles…

sofia

Notice that in the background is the filthy floor but it’s dry, the firing must have helped that a bit, of course who knows what kind of critters are lurking in the crawlspace. We have a full day today too and it’s gonna be hot. Here’s a bright white bisque piece fresh out of the kiln and a closeup of that groovy texture I dig so much…

bisque

bisqueThat damn twitter doesn’t work still.

Another Bug(gy) Weekend…

August 8, 2009

Today and tomorrow with my favorite person. Off for a walk, then lunch, then we’re gonna unload a bisque together. She has so many pieces to sand. Summer weather’s back… supposed to be 93 today and 96 tomorrow. I was nice while it lasted. Here’s a vase I was working on yesterday…

greenware

greenware

Down In The Dungeon…

August 7, 2009

I got a comment from Andrew Widdis all the way over in Melbourne, Australia asking to see shots of the kiln. The kiln’s not much to see as it sits so quietly amid the visual pandemonium that surrounds it. Before last summer I had everything clay in a little room in the back of my house, kiln included. That’s when I decided to add on to the room which is shown a bit in this post. To make a long story short, I put the kiln in the basement which is where I used to do woodworking although I sold much of my woodworking stuff to create room to put my clay stuff so that I could add on to the studio. When I moved my clay stuff back upstairs into the bigger studio, I left the kiln in the basement and decided I’d have to decide between the tedium of carrying each piece down and up and down and up the stairs to bisque/glaze/glazefire/photograph… and the kiln being in the studio and taking up precious working space. So for now it’s in the basement… but so is everything else.

basement

basement

The wet floor adds to the squalid nature of the basement and is a relatively new problem. The wettest year since I’ve lived in KY (23 years), a new leak that I’m guessing is because the addition’s roof is about 1 foot short of the house’s roof proper and I didn’t think that 1 foot needed it’s own gutter, and of course my recent battle with the clogged plumbing have all combined into a less than hospitable environment to work but I’ve had the doors open for about a week and it’s starting to dry out a bit (crossing my fingers that no critters take up residence). I plan on dealing with these things after these next firings are done but I’ve always lived my life according to the wisdom given to the Arkansas Traveler… (paraphrasing) AT – “Why don’t you fix that leaky roof?” Old Man – “When it’s a rainin’, it’s too wet to fix it and when it’s dry, it’s just as good as any man’s roof.” So we’ll see, add it to the neverending list. So here’s the kiln… no big shakes, although it’s cooling with last night’s bisque in it… finally.

basement

While I was down there taking pics and loading I took some pictures of the kiln while loading…

basement

basement
In the last pic you can see Sofia’s little smiley faced tile peeking out from under the bowl.

What A Difference A Day Makes…

August 6, 2009

Twenty four little hours/Brought the sun and the flowers/Where there used to be rain… yea Dinah Washington. So Sofia and I went out for our morning walk with the dog and I took the camera in anticipation of giant puddles only slightly diminished. Much to her dismay this was pretty much all we found on the puddle front…

sofia

According to the radio report I heard Louisville had 6+ inches of rain in one hour the other day and the Municipal Sewer District dude on the radio was saying that no sewer system in America could handle that much water and that the underground pipes all over town would have to be a wide as the streets above them. Personally, I abhor the need for municipal individuals to have to have press conferences after unnatural natural occurrences to defend their responses to things that rarely happen or were never foreseen to happen. One year Louisville got 18″ of snow in one night and a freezing rain the next day. It closed the city for days and the road crews didn’t clear the roads because it was impossible. Louisville never gets that much snow and to be prepared for it would be about the same as Orlando being prepared to get 18″ in one day. Consequently, every time there’s a hint of flurries in the air, the city sends salters and sanders out and they sit all day in trucks with their engines running under overpasses clearly so they can say they were ready at the press conference that never comes. This obsession with blame on the city level amazes me especially in contrast to the lack of obsession with blame on the national level, but I digress. Here’s the bowl I finished applying resist to yesterday… I might be able to fire a bisque tonight or tomorrow…

greenware

P U, Too Many U’s…

August 5, 2009

We had our Scrabble game last night and I didn’t fare too well. Damn U’s, I had 2 U’s four different times and traded them in 3 times. I even had 2 V’s with the 2 U’s, talk about aggravating… unless VUVU or UVUV are words. Not to be pedantic but when your rack has QVVDDO… can’t remember the 7th, you just want to throw in the towel. Of course you always think you had bad letters when you lose. Over time I have come to the conclusion that if you have bad letters, better to cut your losses quickly and trade them in (losing a turn) than try and limp along turn after turn without being able to play. The temptation is to just hang on and you’ll get a couple good letters and everything will be ok without taking the hit of a lost turn. This strategy has served me well but last night I hesitated and didn’t do it right away and that may have cost me. Anyway, it was a fairly handsome board…

scabble

Yesterday’s post was about all the fun we had out playing in the water and although I knew it had to be worse in places, I had no idea how bad parts of the city were. Here’s a picture of Churchill Downs…

2009flood

Here’s a neighborhood a couple miles from me called Butchertown…

2009flood

And it’s supposed to rain again tonight!

Tres Bien Ensemble…

August 4, 2009

It’s been a whirlwind of a day so far. I didn’t even turn on the computer til after 1:00. The storms started early and it stayed so dark (it’s still dark actually) that we all slept (even the dog) til past 8:30. Then the hail, then the running around the house closing windows. There’s been really bad flooding in Louisville and Southern Indiana and fortunately we live on a hill. When the rain let up a little, Sofia, Mom, Sunglasses and I went for a walk which I knew would be fun and wish I could’ve brought the camera but it would’ve gotten wet. We usually find puddles after a rain and Sofia cannot stay out of them but today every depression in lawns and yards were like ponds. Eventually we found a “lake” at the end of a school parking lot where there is a huge depression in the grass. It was up to my thighs and Sofia got her first real lesson in how to do the doggie paddle… from Sunglasses. Sunglasses was not too happy about me dragging her into the middle of this pond but once she got where her feet wouldn’t touch the bottom, the real live doggie paddle ensued. We decided to go to lunch “as a family” and we let Sofia dress herself as always and when I got a load of sky blue clogs and faerie dress over her regular clothes, all I could say is… tres bien ensemble!

sofia

I actually had to use the flash in the house at 1:30 because it’s so dark outside and it’s still raining cats and dogs. No Scrabble last night and it should happen tonight barring some flood related delay. Here’s a bowl I was working on yesterday…

greenware

I imagine that all these pictures of bowls start to blend together but that’s what I’m working on. I decided maybe some closeups of that texture that really floats my boat…

greenware

greenware

A Walk In The Woods…

August 3, 2009

The bug and I went to Bernheim Forest yesterday with some friends and took a long hike. Bernheim is a great place designed by the Olmsted (he designed Central Park) firm and it has lakes and ponds and much interesting flora… many of the trees are marked with little signs to let you know what they are. Although the public knows that they have resident artists, many do not know that there is a big wood kiln on the property that gets fired when one of the resident artists is a potter. I’ve never seen this kiln as it is not in the general visitors area and we even asked the kid at the entrance where it was and he didn’t know there was one. Anyway we took a hike and had a picnic and Sofia caught a butterfly and we saw many different kinds of mushrooms on the trails. Unfortunately, amidst the pandemonium that occurs whenever someone visits because the dog goes ballistic in an attempt to give them all tongue baths, I neglected to put my camera in the bag with our lunches. Later I went to get it out for some pics and after not finding it, got that uneasy feeling that you get when you leave you wallet at home and are not sure if it’s lost or merely forgotten. Instead of pictures of our Bernheim trip here’s another one of the smaller bowls…

bowl

bowl

Either tonight or tomorrow is gonna be another scrabble smackdown. I’m really looking forward to it because it’s been an uncustomarily long time since the last time we played.

August Bug Days…

August 2, 2009

Got the bug for the weekend as always but it’s getting more difficult to do a post as my punishment for being on the computer (upstairs) while the canine demon is downstairs is some kind of damage. She finally ruined the couch completely the other day so I’m not sure what I’m trying to protect but if I’m upstairs busily typing away then who knows what evil lurks… downstairs out of my sight. We are always busy on Saturday and yesterday we spent a couple hours at the local natatorium, in fact the Mary T. Meagher (Olympic Gold Medalist) Natatorium. There’s fountains outside spraying water and the weather is starting to creep back up to summer temperatures. Here’s Sofia and one of her little friends (Monica in the second picture)…

sofia

sofia

I got this shot just before Sofia wrestled a giant frog and got it into a successful full nelson…

sofia