I spent New Year’s Eve firing Little Bertha and January 2nd unloading all the fired pots. This was the 5th time I fired the kiln and it was by far the best. It still has some bugs, but then every new kiln takes time to figure out. I’m looking forward to the quicker turnarounds this smaller kiln offers. BTW, all the little cups are either test glazes or old glazes I have yet to document. It was a very successful firing overall, and the tests provided new insight.
#1- Our driveway after yet another rain. It’s getting tiresome, all the rain, but it is better than drought.
#2- Big Bertha kiln firing #9 for 2018.
#3- The glow at the completion of firing #9. Close to 2300 F inside the kiln. Nice and warm in the kiln shed :-)
#4- Coffee in the AM with a new mamo glazed mug. This is #whyimakepots
Don’t forget! This weekend is a special time in Seagrove! All of us will be open and/or participating in the Celebration of Seagrove Potters at the old Luck’s Bean Plant on Hwy. 705 or the Seagrove Pottery Festival behind Seagrove Elementary School on Old Plank Rd.
Come and see us!
Dear family and friends,
This has been a busy year, having built a new smaller kiln, and having conducted lots of glaze and clay experiments, the latter exclusively with NC minimally processed clays. The smaller kiln was built in hopes of having quicker turnaround times between making and firing, but the closer we got to the holidays, and the more pots stacked up in need of glazing and firing, the more I have relied on Big Bertha, my old car kiln. As I write this I'm gearing up to fire Big Bertha again this week, and possibly a smaller load in Little Bertha next week. Whew!
In the event you can't make it here, we are also in the following NC galleries - Seagrove Pottery in Cary, Baxter's in New Bern, and Pea Island Art in Salvo.
In addition to keeping my shop open Mon-Sat throughout the holiday season, TGP will also be in the following events:
The Southern Christmas Show (thanks to Dan Triece of Dirtworks Pottery), November 8 - 18, at The Park Expo and Conference Center in Charlotte, NC.
From November 17 through January 5, I will have pots in the Holiday Gift Invitational, Christmas at Captain White's, at the Alamance Arts Council, Graham, NC.
From November 24 through January 4, my work will be in the first Holiday Invitational at the Center for Visual Artists in Greensboro, NC.
Saturday, November 17, I will be participating in my annual trunk show in Wilmington, NC. This is a private event so please send me an email for an invite if interested.
That's all for now. I have to get back to glazing pots and loading kilns! We hope to see you all soon!
Tom and Jane
Here is what is going on with Tom Gray Pottery between now and New Years:
Alamance County Arts Council, Graham, NC - Holiday Gift Invitational - November 7 through January 5.
Southern Christmas Show - The Park Expo and Conference Center- Charlotte, NC - November 8 - 18. My work will be with Dirtworks Pottery, in booth #6.
Center for Visual Arts - Greensboro, NC - November 24 - January 4 - Holiday Invitational.
Celebration of Seagrove Potters - weekend of November 17 - 18 - my shop will be open Saturday and Sunday, although we will not be participating in the Celebration at the Luck’s bean plant. We will also be at an annual, invitation only trunk show in Wilmington, NC on Saturday the 17th. Please email for more info and an invitation.
K. Olsen Ceramics in Carlisle, PA.
More mamo white, one of my all time favorite glazes.
Still gearing up for the holidays! With so many pots in process, I had to switch back to firing Big Bertha. Lots more pots to come!
I seldom go back and try to duplicate pots I made in the past, but this group of bowls made for a special couple has reminded me of how much I liked this glaze. I used it for years, on many types of pots, and it varied widely in different parts of the kiln. I think it’s time to revisit.
to be preparing for all that we celebrate November, December and January.
The first firing was far better than I expected! You never know what to expect with a new kiln, especially one with novel ideas incorporated into the design. I have been working toward this since February 2018, finally fired on Friday, August 17th, and unloaded on Monday the 20th. I am well pleased, working away to fire again soon, and looking forward to firing Little Bertha often.
We are inundated with requests for pottery donations to charitable causes. Many people don't realize that our handmade pots are our form of currency, but, due to tax laws currently in place, we can not write off our pottery donations. I am unable to donate to every cause, but this auction, for my friend Blaine Avery, I think is most worthwhile.
Attend if you can and buy some pots. Please donate money if you can't attend.
Good luck my friend.
Progress on Little Bertha, my 4th and probably final handmade kiln. Tomorrow a buddy and I will build the flat-top roof, then another friend will plumb in the gas line and burners, and finally the chimney will be constructed. It sounds like a lot of work left, but I see LB firing very soon :-)
PS: to the lady from Illinois, thanks for reading my blog, and stopping in today. Enjoy your olive oil cruet!