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192 Jim Boone Rd
Bakersville, NC, 28705
United States


The central information hub for Michael Kline Pottery, a small one man shop of pottery making in the mountains of western North Carolina.

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The Best of Sawdust and Dirt

A record of the goings on around Michael Kline Pottery!

Filtering by Tag: Studio Potter

Truth Out

Michael Kline

Monday! And if I recall, last time I checked I was having a BIG week! Producing lots of pots, et cetera...
Well, so far it has been a day of errands and repairs and now blogging, but no pots, yet...

Recap of the a.m.

8:05 take girls to school

8:30 to the grocery store to buy snack and get cash back.

8:40 drive across very bumpy, icy, un-plowed parking lot of the parts store to get battery terminal cable replacement and spent cash from grocery store.

9:00 return computer part to Barking Spider Pottery and chat for a good long while about pottery, Mac's, and my Chinese trimming tool. Becky brandishes her brand new copy of Studio Potter and I am immediately envious.

10:00 Go to Marvin Jenson's to talk about Chinese trimming tool and discuss how it can be made. look at all of the Ducatti's in his shop in varying states of customization and repair.

10:40 arrive back home and work on truck. fix battery cable and start truck. it works! Great.

11:00 transfer rummage sale stuff from truck to sube.

plate by moi, cup by ?
venture a guess?

11:30 decide to make lunch a little early. Menu: Thomas brand "pseudo" bagel with Snow Creek sausage and cheese and cup of milk.

12 noon: Check emails blogs etc. during lunch.

12:30 check mail box and find my copy of Studio Pottery in it! Big woop woop!

Well there goes the afternoon.


What ever happened to 12 before Noon?

Trading Cards

Michael Kline

a sampling of the
fronts of the cards

Just in time for the first pitch...well, pretty's a great little project that I am lucky to be part of. Lucky, as in, "coach" put me in to pinch hit in the bottom of the ninth. [Even when I played ball in little league I was second string. :-)] This set of 33 full color trading cards of potters you may or may not know will benefit the Studio Potter Magazine and can be yours for the mere price of $23! If you're in Phoenix and NCECA you can stop by the Studio Potter booth at NCECA and pick up a set. I'm not sure how many they printed, but I'd say that you'd better get yours, soon. If you're not at NCECA, then you can get a set from Simon Levin, here.

As a kid, (huh, right, probably till I was in college), I collected baseball cards, and still have my collection! So I was thrilled when I got the call. My heroes used to be ball players, but for a long time now, they've been potters. So all of this has come full circle.

some of the backs

I'll try to share more of my favorites after I get permission from the "coach".

[A NOTE ON THE STATS------YIC---years in clay, CR---cone range, PPY---pots per year,
SPY---shards per year, MEPS---most expensive pot sold, MEPP---most
expensive pot purchased, Po---position, FT---firing time,
PF---preferred fuel, Nn---nickname, T---team.]


Michael Kline

Spent most of the day running errands. I managed to pack the pots I'm sending to the Mudfire Potters of The Roan Show opening in April. There will be a 2 gallon jar among some plates, platters, some big cups, and yunomis.

Speaking of yunomis, the AKAR yunomi show opens in the morning. I hope you will see the show and get to buy some of the great pots the show promises to have. Some of the cups profits will go to the Studio Potter magazine. They are recommending that you register so that your purchases can be expedited without delay. The show sold out pretty quickly last year as I remember, so log on early. I think the show goes live at about 10a.m. EST. I have a few more yunomi that I didn't ship that I hope to post on etsy very soon. I'll let you know when I do that.

My friend Buck was over this evening to wire up the pug mill, mixer, and kiln. Hopefully, soon we'll be hearing the roar of the Paoli mixing up some fresh red dirt. I've been limping along with reclaim and previously frozen clay that has taken a lot of time to reprocess. Maybe now I'll have no excuses to crank those pots out. Let's hope...

Coffee Break vol. 18

Michael Kline

After a couple of "back and forth" phone tags, I thought that maybe I could summon Simon Levin by using one of his cups. Since I had just had lunch and really wanted to brew up a little cup of joe anyway, why not Simon?! I usually use this cup for tea, but today it was going under the coffee filter. And what do you know? My cell rings and it's Simon! Anyway, it's been a while since I did a coffee break post and here is the beautiful cup that my wife had obtained from Simon some years ago.

in the hand

I'll let you know more about the exciting project Simon is working on for the upcoming NCECA conference as soon as I have more details.

Blue Skies, Bailey's Peak, and Yunomi's

Michael Kline

View of the pottery.
Bailey's Peak is to the right.
It's the Mt. Fuji of my little corner of the world!

Taking a lunch break from cutting firewood on this beautiful Friday afternoon! I've wanted to show some of the yunomi that Courtney Martin fired last weekend. Here are a few of my favorites, so far...

yunomi, 4.5" & 5" h.

My experience reminds me that putting one's pots in another person's kiln is a slightly risky proposition. Sometimes there's a payoff, sometimes it just doesn't work. I'm not sure if it's the mind's eye playing tricks or if expectations are unreliable. After all, expectation is a trickster!

yunomi, 3.75" & 4.25" h.

After sanding and grinding the bottoms and using them at dinner last night I'm convinced that I am lucky in more ways than one. For one, I'm lucky to have a neighbor kind enough to find space in her kiln. For two, I'm lucky that my minds eye guided me through the treacherous waters of expectation. So see for yourself and let me know what you think about these. There are more that I will sand and grind and photograph before I have to ship them out very shortly. I'll try to share those with you as well.

The new Studio Potter was in the mailbox yesterday and the new Ceramics Monthly today. BANG BANG! I'll try to get them read and send out my review shortly. I'm also reading "Talking with the Turners" and will finish that one up in the next few days if I get some time! The author, Charles Mack, has been so kind as to permit me to quote the book, as well as put some of the audio on the blog. So I will try to do that soon. In other media, Andrew Stephenson has loaned me a copy of the Issac Button/ Soil Hill Pottery video, that I hope to put here if I can. Check out Andrew's web site. It's very nice and informative.

Thanks for reading and I hope to hear from you. Don't be a stranger!
Have a great weekend.

SP 36 #2

Michael Kline

The new Studio Potter is out and on a newstand near you. If you don't subscribe, please consider doing so. It's a one of a kind, commercial free, hype free pottery journal. I first read SP at my college library, and have been reading ever since. Most times I read it cover to cover. This issue is particularly good since I have contributed an article on blogging. (-;

Here is an excerpt,
Writing the blog may be a way for me to sort out my various interests and to come to an understanding of the pots I am making and the time we live in. Many of the pots that inspire me were made here in the Carolinas more than a century ago, and I want to share that fascination with anyone willing to follow me on the blog. Like many studio potters, I work alone, and the blog is an interactive tool we can all use to communicate ideas and techniques with each other, be it with videos, pictures, or casual or thoughtful prose. With future generations brought up in a world of computers and the Internet, there is no telling how these will influence what potters make. I am fascinated with the notion of history and drawn to the traditional pots of the past; at the same time, my curiosity about the future pulls me into the other direction, and I’m equally excited by the pots that have yet to be made.

Other articles include:
"Ceramics and the Zeitgeist" by Tom Spleth *
"Creating Ceramic Art Using the Rapid Prototyping Process" by John Balistreri
"Backwards Into the Future" by Lisa Orr
"Illusions Of Accuracy" by John Britt *
"Tools Are Like Songs" by Ezra Shales
"In Praise of Tools" by Steven Roberts
"Of Time and Place" by Elizabeth Robinson
"Tinker, Potter, Sculptor: Maker of Objects, Creator of Things" by Michael Sherrill*
"Mapping Form: Dimensional Imaging and Ceramics" by Steven Thurston
"Pottery Myths" by Jeff Zamek
"Stepping Backwards: Practicing Historical Accuracy" by Adam Zayas
"Tools and Trees" by Louise Harter
"Glaze Jet For Interior Glazing" by Mark Cartwright
"Seeing It Fresh" by Maggie Creshkoff
"Simple Tools In the Pot Shop: A Minimalist Approach" by Mark Oeler
"Converting a Small Electric Kiln For Gas Firing" by Jon Singer
"Anti-Technical" by Caitlin Applegate
"The Tool of Drawing" by Catherine White
"Mosaics: A Contemporary Approach" by Megumi Naitoh
"A Flameware Journey" by Robbie Lobell
"Mass Production and Originality" by Marek Cecula
"The ISCAEE Symposium: A Global Ceramic Education" by Jenny Swanson
SHARDS: "A Potters Throwing Rib" by Karen Theusen Massarro
NEW VOICES: "Raising My Voice" by Lindsay Rogers*

western NC potter

I'm proud to be among such a distinguished crowd. I hope you can pick a copy up at your local clay supplier or start your subscription with this issue.