Friday, June 26, 2015

New Kiln a Go-Go

indiegogo, new kiln, project, campaign, fundraiser

I've launched an IndieGoGo campaign to fund the construction of a new soda kiln.


Here's what I wrote to introduce the project: As a potter, the kiln is a critical tool, and an enormous investment and commitment. The wood kiln I built in 2002 has served me well, and will still be fired several times a year. I have been working with master kiln builder, William Baker, to design the new propane fired soda kiln. The kiln will be smaller in scale than my wood kiln, and will be less labor intensive to fire. The smaller size will allow for a shorter turnaround as I experiment with surfaces and glazes. The new pots are time and labor intensive to make, so the scale of the kiln is important. I hired William for his design expertise as well as his meticulous attention to detail and skill as a builder. I will work alongside him to build the kiln, and I couldn't be more excited.

  To contribute to the project click here!

Thank you so much!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Are You A Solopreneur?

I listen to every one of Gary Vaynerchuk's #AskGaryVee shows/podcasts and he ALWAYS has great advice on social marketing, biz, etc. Every so often I find myself saying, "yes, that's what I want to know." Skip and FF to the question.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

When The Mud Meets The Bat

I listened to The Potters Cast #116 with Connee Mayeron and heard the most wonderful way of describing the excitement of throwing.

At 49:10 Connee explains,

I don't want to measure what I'm throwing with a caliper, because I want the tension of when the form is kind of at it's most significant moment, when it's the most alive. I want to stop throwing at that point. So whether it's an inch in or an inch out, I don't really care. I'm always looking for that vibrancy.
Connee also has great answers to a couple of Paul Blais's slightly canned "mud meets the bat" questions, at times taking him by surprise with her directness! Paul has a great sense of humor and laughs with pleasant surprise to her fresh attitude. It made for a lively convo!

It's a great episode and I totally recommend it and all of Paul's shows. If you don't already, you should subscribe [here], whether you are a potter, a sculptor, or someone who loves to get insights into the creative process.

I look forward to meeting Connee next year at the Minnesota Pottery Tour. [and talking to Paul on his podcast! ;-)]

Friday, May 15, 2015

What's Next?

Making is done, on to the deco and glazing and firing #52. 

korean pottery influence stamping kline North carolina

korean pottery influence stamping kline North carolina


Friday, May 8, 2015

Focus


12 by 12 (not including the little gem in the left foreground) 
This week has been a confluence of so many deadlines and I have made the mistake of "whack-a-moling" these projects and getting consumed in the process. 

Meanwhile, the BIG deadline is my upcoming firing. So this morning I committed myself to a simple 12 x12. I've been meaning to throw some salsa bowls and finally got to that place on my making list. 

It seems like such a simple task to make twelve pots by 12 noon, but life is full of hurdles between my morning coffee and the making of pots. 

In the beginning, innovators invent out of some kind of personal need. I developed the idea of 12x12 based on methods that two of my pottery heroes employed. Michael Simon limits the the number of pots he makes each day and varies the forms, so that  the focus and variety produces the results/pots he wants. Linda Christianson starts her day by making a half dozen smallish pots before anything else gets in the way. 

My desire and need to get  simple focus led me to combine Simon's and Christianson's methods and come up with 12x12. 

After a scattered week of making I sought to push everything out of my mind and clear the path to my wheel to make just these pots quiet the noise of my deadlines. A construct like 12x12 is just the answer for a Friday morning! 


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Just Pictures

here for a few choice words?? see the post above. thanks ! sorry for the redundancy. or maybe you like seeing these pots again?! 

Thanks for reading the blog. pottery, nc, wip, stamping, inlay, sanggam, mishima
pottery, nc, wip, stamping, inlay, sanggam, mishima
pottery, nc, wip, stamping, inlay, sanggam, mishima
pottery, nc, wip, stamping, inlay, sanggam, mishima
pottery, nc, wip, stamping, inlay, sanggam, mishima

Pots on Scholarship

stamp inlay, pottery, north carolina, wip
my favorite and most challenging part was
that little place just below the rim
Last night I “finished” these jars and wondered where the time had gone. In this kind of zone I get lost in the learning of a new technique and the observation of something new and exciting emerging, but also heard the caution from the rational side of my wood kiln.
pottery, nc, wip, stamping, inlay, sanggam, mishima


pottery, nc, wip, stamping, inlay, sanggam, mishima


pottery, nc, wip, stamping, inlay, sanggam, mishima

pottery, nc, wip, stamping, inlay, sanggam, mishima
committed to the 52nd firing!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Video: Slip Inlay Process



What's more fun than scraping slip off of a pot?

(don't say winning the lotto)

Watching a hyper-lapse video of someone scraping slip off of a pot! (of course)

Monday, April 20, 2015

420


Rainy morning skies turned bright clear blue and my spirits lifted as I was just a little bit soggy from a lot of weekend rain and ever growing and deeper grass. Maybe my shoes need some more mink oil or something.

Just wanted to throw a couple of things your way and keep you up to date.


I continue to get a kick out of my inlay stamping carving and scraping. I slathered several coats of slip on the stampings and carvings of these plates Then I started scraping like a scratch ticket lotto freak looking for the payoff. I played around with layering black and white slip and the payoff, for the prefired time being, is really pleasing. Contrasts in the raw state don’t necessarily mean the same in the fired and glazed state. So I reserve my giddiness until I get more glaze and slip tests worked out.


But for the time being I am really enjoying the process despite the enormous time it takes. I feel several deadlines bearing down on my calendar and need to pull myself away from these pieces to produce some of my bread and butter pots, but it isn’t easy.

Before I go a couple pieces from this afternoon’s #pottersofmeerkat session. I threw several jars and the latter two I picture here. They were both stamped wet on the wheel and are a little lumpy. But I like how they are coming out. I’ll do some carving on them tomorrow.

Thanks for reading and as always, I hope you are lovin' the spin YOU’RE in!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Show-Room



It’s spring in the mountains. Grass is growing, flowers blooming, and customers are finally streaming into the showroom here at the pottery.

This week I’ve been slogging through piles of stuff that has accumulated in my showroom in its winter dormancy. And just in the nick of time it was ready for yesterday’s visits! I have another group tour this Tuesday so I’ll focus on the grounds now that the showroom and studio are once again presentable.

What does a Kline pottery tour include, you ask? Well depending on the group, be they potters or not, I usually walk them through the kiln area, the studio and then, of course conclude with the finished pots in the showroom…aka “exiting through the gift shop.”

If the group is a class from the nearby Penland School, I sometimes arrange to do some kind of demonstration. The demo is usually brushwork, but occasionally I do a throwing demo.

So, if you want to take a tour of the pottery just drop me an (email)[mail to:michaeljkline@gmail.com] and I’d be happy to show you around. If you can’t come here in person maybe you can see what’s happening by tuning into one of my live streams and I’ll show you around with my phone! Here’s a recent stream.

There’s much pottery to make this week as I’ve just pugged about 600 lbs of reclaim and I don’t like to let that sit around too long. So my Shimpo will be spinning a lot of clay this week.

Stay tuned for the relaunch of my podcast that has been long overdue. I needed to revamp the format and release episodes more regularly. Currently I have 5 episodes in the wings and counting. Should be some good stuff for you there and j send my apologies to all the faithful for your support.

I would love your support for the podcast with a donation of ANY amount. Please see the “tip jar” at the top of the right sidebar.

Ok! If you’ve read this far I truly appreciate your readership and look forward to sharing more of my potter’ life in the coming weeks!