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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: plans

Friday is The New Monday: No Rest For the Weary

Michael Kline

After the Veteran's Day Holiday and no school yesterday, it feels like Monday. But who am I foolin'? I don't really have weekends this time of the year, anyway! I guess it's been a long week, feels more like ye olde fortnight!

Still gawking at the beautifully clear skies we've had over the last few days and finding that the only time I can really be productive is when the curtains fall on all of that glaring daylight. Last night was another late night, but productive. After getting the handles on these really big tankards and retrofitting the lids on a dozen jars, I tore into making some yunomi(i) for the AKAR Yunomi show in the spring.

I know what you're saying, "spring??" Yes, April, I believe. Working back from the online opening, there's the deadline that the gallery needs the pots in January to begin photography of the gazillion cups Then there's rarity of a wood firing in December, here, and you get making them in November! This pottery doesn't happen overnight, ya know!?

[yes it does]
[overnight, that is]
[oh, I get it]
[ ;---) ]

What? All of that and no pictures???

[imagine image of a board full of roundish cups with
dramatic early morning lighting highlighting surface
details of wooden ribs and fullness of form]

What kind of blog is this anyway?

OK, back to some sort of sanity... Here are some ornaments Stacey and the girls worked on yesterday! in porcelain!! We're lining things up for this years BIG Toe River Studio Tour. Folks come from all over the Southeast to this 2 county 3 day weekend Crafts Mecca event! [If you're on my mailing list we'll be sending out our annual hand painted card to your mailbox very soon, announcing the time and dates. And it's not to late to sign up. See mailing list sign up button on the right. It's instant and it's free]

OK, I'd better put my auto-magical blogging pen down and start punching out items on my little chalkboard. I can't let all of this early morning genius time go to waste!

[it's actually just coffee energy]


Beginnings 2010

Michael Kline

As I gather news of all my potter-blogger buddies it seems like everyone is finished with the parties and celebrations and is setting back to the work of making pottery. As much as I'd like to be stepping up to the Shimpo to make new pots, I am preoccupied with all of the tasks leftover from 2009.

The kids loft bed, stepping stool, and book shelf that I put together for them for Christmas sit in the studio ready for paint. My pile of logs still need to be split and added to our dwindling supply of firewood for the two wood stoves. Everything is frozen solid out side, including slips and glazes that were left in the tool shed. (I've gotten out of the habit of preparing for Winter since I moved here to NC from the unrelenting winters in Massachusetts. We hardly have more than 3 or 4 inches of snow that lasts for a day or two, much less 15" and highs in the 20's.) I need to dig more red dirt!

It seems that, for me, the return to the studio work is a little like a plane waiting for permission to land, circling high above. I always have to clear the runway and tie up loose ends before I can think about getting the clay to spinnin'.

Today was a sawdust day. I cut cord wood all afternoon and split a fair amount. Besides the cord wood, there is a massive pile of edgings to cut for the winter and spring firings. The snow needs to melt before I can. The chain on the saw needs replacing. (This post is a looking like a big to-do list!)

Hopefully by next Monday I can get to the dirt, but for this week it looks like a lot of sawdust!

The Best Laid Plans

Michael Kline

Right about now I go through a brief moment of regret while I go over the make list and seeing the pots/ideas that didn't get made. Right about yesterday is when everything had to be made in order to be dry enough to be bisque fired and/or glazed for the loading. And at the end of every session I blur that "last wet day" date and spin out a few quick one's. Today will be one of those cheating days, trying to make those pitchers I didn't make yet, and the last minute tumblers!
Meanwhile, I really need to get the painting station set up to get started with my brush.
Of course I will let you know how it's going throughout the day.

Get Out the Brushes

Michael Kline

quick cooling the kiln last night

Today will be slightly abbreviated in the studio. I'm planning some play time with girls this afternoon and I'm cooking dinner! WooHoooo. Maybe Paella!

Painting begins today with a little pottery shuffling to and fro as well. I've made a nice path between the house and the studio, two in fact. One goes to the porch kiln, and the other a beeline to the kitchen and 'fridge. So as I go up to the studio I grab a few pots from the bisque and on the way down i bring a few pots to the porch kiln. I make a lot of trips back and forth checking my non computerized electric kiln. [Update: the kiln fires quite well on high. The breaker is fine and nothing is heating up except the kiln. That's good. On high the temp increases about 4 degrees/minute which was the same as I had at the Mushroom Factory. This all seems fairly trivial, I know. ]

My plans include painting lots of bird imagery as well vines on the pots. Last firing cycle I failed to paint enough of our feathered friends. So I want to make up for that. The majority of the pots will be for salt glaze, but I have a few that I want to glaze with my alkaline ash glaze. Also on the slate is my "Obama-ware". Ayumi Horie is hosting an online sale. See the list of participating potters here. A percentage of the proceeds of the online sale will go to the campaign to elect Barack Obama and Joe Biden!