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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: student work

Heat, pt 1

Michael Kline

hot for February NC mountain potter, anyway! lint haters gonna hate.
I'm trying to come up with words that might describe my experience as a presenter at the Florida Heat Surface Conference.  I could use some of my favorite one word comments like, awesome, cool, amazing, fantastic, unbelievable, etc. But how many times can one use these and still get an idea of real excitement across?


KK was wise to just to keep it to a few amazing pictures. She said she would leave the writing to me. Ha!

the Train Station

Florida Heat Surface was the first of its kind at St. Pete Clay/Morean Center for Clay (Train Station Center for Clay) . Adam Field and Benjamin Carter did a lot of the planning and organizing that brought the likes of  Chandra DeBuse, Forrest Lesch-Middelton, Julia Galloway, Kristen Kieffer, Lisa Orr and myself together to explore and exhibit our ceramic surface designs. The setting was balmy and expansive. Lots and lots of cubic footage of clay! huge! lots of kilns inside and out. Lots of pots and sculpture everywhere! I'm not sure if Peter Voulkos ever worked there in the Train Station but I did heard that St Pete the city, not the clay giant/patron saint was the winter clay playground for Mr. V. The place was awesome! (oops, sorry)

The daily schedule varied by presenter and we each got to demo with a different person each day. There was a work room "backstage", that was always busy with demo prep and wheels spinning. I seemed to have stuff spread out all over. Since I was the only presenter to drive to the workshop and consequently I had a lot of stuff! I filled the car with some of my home clay, lots of finished pots that were sold in the gallery, and lots of bisqueware for painting and firing. Too much really, but better to have too much than too little.

Adam Field layin down the glaze doctrine!
Adam and I started things off with a glazing/deco demo on Wednesday morning and ending up loading 2 kilns. Soda and salt. SO I was glad to have brought extra pots to help fill the kilns.

Me trying to remember the punchline

waxed and glazed work for the salt kiln. really nice deco!

stacked and ready

It was a LOT of work, but the prospect of firing and getting pots before the weekend was over was exciting for everyone! As for me, I was a little anxious about firing that kiln that was a stranger to me, not to mention the pressure that fell on my shoulders for a successful firing.

Hey, but that's why I get paid the big bucks, right?

to be continued...

NCECA: Simon's Senior Moment

Michael Kline

I would like to take a little time here in my blog post where I turn the focus off of the big name folks in the fancy K-12 exhibition. While at NCECA I took a little of my valuable time to talk to the young people especially those to who are graduating and going off into the big world. I feel its important for me to give back to the community and if I can help by letting them bask in my presence for just a little bit and it makes me look like I care, then as my publicist says, "I should do it". So I would like to introduce a new feature to the Simon Says blog, that I like to call "Simon's Senior Moment"

I interviewed young Benjamin Zimmerman. Ben is graduating from high school this year and has chosen to attend the NCECA conference. Ben was inspired by his high-school art teacher Brian Kovachik and wanted to see what the world of clay had to offer. Ben said "It's really opened my eyes. I didn't know there was so much pottery." Ben a talented young student leaves high-school for a degree program in Petroleum Engineering. Perhaps with some of that huge salary he will earn he can buy some of all that pottery, hang on NCECA people Ben is coming to help!

This Senior Moment has been brought to you by Sawdust and Dirt.

Simon Levin is a regular contributor to Sawdust and Dirt. He lives and makes pots in Gresham, WI. When Simon is not making or firing pots, fighting fires, or caring for his lovely family, he is creating such wonders as WikiClay! To find out more about Simon Levin and his pottery go to If you have questions for Simon he can be reached at otherwise please leave comments for Simon here!