Gary's Third Pottery Blog

When the going gets tough, dragons gonna get going....

Gary's third pottery blog

WRITE TO ME! Come see me! Open studio HERE! November 25-26 (11-4 each day); Aurora Art and Design, daily until 12/24; Cooperstown Art Assoc. daily until 12/24; Ellis Hollow Community Fair, 12/10; December 10, Little Red Wagon at the Space at Greenstar. All material on this blog unless stated otherwise is copyright Gary Edward Rith 2016

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Teapot Tuesday and toads.....

I find myself barely awake this morning. Still in my dreams...where, as I am so often lately, back teaching at the school I worked at in the mid-90s.  The building was different and I spent the whole night trying to find my classroom.... this just after finishing Henry James' THE POTRAIT OF A LADY.  It is an extraordinary book.  I LOVED it.  But it is also an extraordinarily WORDY book, as is his style, and no doubt Hemingway's stripped down style in the following generation of American writers was inspired by the windy passages of James..... but you just have to accept its style as you do of other historical pieces, and enjoy it for what it is, a novel about a young woman who is admired for her fresh and independent mind who marries a sh!t.

SO, Monday I have all these experiments coming out of the kiln, and my goodness they ALL turned out is a froggy teapot and have a great Tuesday!

Monday, June 29, 2015

strange bedfellows....

I was dreaming just now that I was visiting 2-3 other potters.  I respected their imagination and productivity but secretly didn't like their work much.  I imagined, in this dream, all of their work, and I wake up thinking:  "where did I travel to in order to see this, or did I invent it all?".  Because, do you see my point, otherwise I devised all of this work....and I don't like it much?  So like I say, maybe my brain left my head and went wandering, because why would I design and make (imaginary) work that I don't like.... or you could just say I'm nuts :)

We were up and out of bed Sunday, but not everybody got up.....and we have had SO MUCH rain, making most of the flowers pretty happy and the ducks too...have a great Monday!

Sunday, June 28, 2015

equality and opportunity

You wonder what it takes for some to realize that it is the government's job to work for US, all citizens.
It has become common in recent years for a bullying "US vs. them" approach to politics, rather than a realization that politicians work for the people and not a few rich individuals or corporate interests.

In a conversation Thursday where I celebrated the fact that Obamacare survives and thrives with the Supreme Court's blessing, I was amazed at the other person's anger:  "THIS PRESIDENT crammed this down our throats and the next president will be a republican who will repeal it!"
(Crammed?  Work on universal health coverage began with Harry Truman in the 1940s...this is not new...)

No logic was given, just angry words.  Despite the fact that MY HEALTH insurance is Obamacare, and the person I was speaking with cares for me.  Am I an exception?  Is everybody else unworthy? Why is it OK for the military to have all the money it wants from citizens for protection but it is not OK for those same citizens, all of whom have health or sickness every day of their lives, to have the protection of health insurance?  Are public schools or police and fire departments available only to those who have a certain income or access?  Would we be better off if we had NO PUBLIC services at all?  Or do we sensibly realize we all work together for our mutual benefit and protection, which is an investment in making this a stronger and better nation? Better educated, healthier and able to be productive and tax-paying citizens.

I don't argue politics.  My only response, which took me 24 hours to formulate and I am only sharing with you is "I will forgive you for your views which were formed in the 1950s".

I suspect that Friday's ruling on marriage equality inspired that person to FAR HIGHER levels of indignation. Again, we are talking about citizens of the USA having access to the same rights as other citizens, not too complicated, really....

Saturday, June 27, 2015

maybe not these....

AS I KEEP SAYING I am making some cups and teapots for 3 different competitions, and I keep making more ideas...and I SWEAR that I have finally made the last of the possibilities,,,really!

I love these, but I don't think they will be submitted.  I need five different cups, and these are the sixth, and I do a lot with elephants, as you know.  But I think the Godzilla version of this will do it...more on this subject in a few days :)

Friday, June 26, 2015

getting cat vases out of my system

Too bad I didn't get a pic from the top, which is open so you can stuff flowers into your cat. They look cheerful, don't they?

Thursday, June 25, 2015

"them dogs sure like to walk!"

We had a very friendly neighbor from the country who would sit outside and say hello to us as we walked Penny down the street. She would marvel at the fact that we were walking AGAIN that day. YES, she likes to walk, and Penny would also jump into her lap.

Here are 2 new cups with that dog...

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

my own junky sci-fi world....

In theory, the kind of nerdy people I would enjoy hanging around are into fantasy and sci-fi. I guess we would hang out and I would eat the salsa and corn chips and try to bring the conversation around to planet earth....
I was reading GAME OF THRONES for awhile but got bored and went back to mysteries (mysteries being my FAVORITE type of book...give me some blood, missing jewels and a detective with dark secrets!).

And you know, I don't think I have seen a sci-fi movie in about 30+ years, since I was 13....I thought ET was DUMB, I only saw part of STAR WARS when it came on TV (because Carrie Fisher was HOT) and Star Trek?  What is THAT? 
Ditto horror movies...I love Hitchcock's, but those are really just suspense....

But when I was around 6 I would watch GODZILLA or DRACULA on the Saturday Creature Feature sometimes, and it is with fond memories of those classics I create my own junky 50s characters on pots...these here being more possibilities for the cup competitions I am aiming for this summer....

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

when the window behind the couch is opened: summer is HERE

There is a window behind the couch, awkward to open and close, so it usually just comes open and stays open for summer....earlier THIS month, June, we had a couple of frosts and tons of cool weather...but with the solstice, summer has arrived....

The cat especially likes this window....

My tomato and pumpkin plants = THRIVING, and I have my first tomato blossom....

I dunno, WHY DOES the cat sleep on my sandals all day????

You will recall we had new steps built at the studio door...which have disappeared, amusingly enough, under the ferns that were there first....

You will recall I was at a garage sale a couple of weeks ago and got these super duper green planters for my front steps and pink cosmos....

My basil is going NUTS.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Minty Blue for Mugshot Monday....

(new pottery by gary Rith)

SO, like I have been saying, I am making some mugs and teapots for different competitions this summer.  I had some ideas of things I hadn't made before and have explored many of them.

I am nearly done.  BUT anyway, along the way I have been fiddling with my glazes.
You already know that fiddling with white and decoration is a new idea (see posts from the weekend just passed!) and this glaze just below is a new spring green celadon I looooooooove.  Yes. yet another green glaze.

WELL, along the way came the glaze shown in the mugs above.  We have a very pleasant light blue paint in our bathrooms.  Very close to a Tiffany or robin's egg blue.  I asked the guy we bought the house from what it was and he was pretty casual about it "OH, I don't know, just go to the paint store look for a nice minty blue".

I love it "MINTY BLUE".  Light blue with the tiniest shade of green in it.  I was talking with the wife about this and she said this GLAZE is more a minty blue than the bathrooms, and that is how a new glaze recipe gets named....

I am firing the kiln today.  With another glaze experiment in it. I used to say I have 18 glazes.  I have no idea how many now....

Sunday, June 21, 2015

WHOA, there go a couple of surprises...

(new pottery by Gary Rith)

SO, I show pics of this teapot and cup yesterday and I have wanted to decorate like that for years, but it is only now my supplies are suitable.  I like dots and squiggles and spirals and bright colors, as you know, and you have seen me impress such things into a million pots, but painted on in glaze is new.

SO, in other news I am having my DNA done and analyzed as part of a different project and was reminded of recent research into DNA and people's close friends (click here for article):  close friends turn out to very closely related, distant cousins as a matter of fact. So, I am sending this article to various people and this nice picture of FRIENDS is there....and check the mug painted in the background.......

Saturday, June 20, 2015

that squiggly thing....

SO like I was saying, i am entering 2 cup competitions and a teapot competition this summer and working on possibilities...THESE possibilities came out of the kiln Friday, mmmm, yummy yummy, hmm? Have a great Saturday!

(new cup and teapot by Gary Rith)

Friday, June 19, 2015

the competition is getting hot and heavy...

I am entering, as it turns out, 2 cup competitions and one teapot competition this summer...if all goes according to plan! And it shall...

You see "call for entry", some gallery somewhere has a themed show and you can try to submit your work and a)  win a spot in the show and sometimes b) further, win a prize for being the coolest IN that show...

SO, sometimes these things get the juices flowing and the mind working and you think of new ideas and try them I am doing with the cups pictured here.  (the cat vase experiment is a different whim, nothing to do with that).
ANYWAY, so knowing all this, what was I just dreaming?  That I had my pots in progress and the mailman sits down at my table, looking for coffee and cookies, which I provide, and is like "hmmm, I don't think your entries are gonna make it by the deadline...".  I mean these competitions aren't that big of a deal and here I am dreaming of them....?  Maybe a bigger deal that I think ;)

ps-I have weeks and weeks to apply......

Thursday, June 18, 2015

an exhausting night ;)

Dreamt, I swear I am not making this up, all night of CREW.  Rowing.  I had all these college friends who rowed crew.  Long boat with several rowing to single.  The dream ended just as I was going to sneak into the indoor pool (a two mile long indoor pool for crew?  does such a thing exist...?) to try it myself.  Rowing is beautiful.  Cornell University Crew rows near our house on Cayuga Lake and we have a rower in our house, for shaking off the winter blues, but I have never been in a real crew boat, one of those skinny little, fast-moving cigars on the water....

A couple of new mugs, have an awesome day!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

be friendly, be kind.....

A friend was talking the other day about  St. Francis, who had said something along the lines of "seek first to understand then be understood".  You have to think for a second what that means, then you see.
We spend a lot of time trying to make our points, be heard, and that IS important, but so is listening to each other :)

Have an awesome day!

(new sculpted wall piece by Gary Rith)

Monday, June 15, 2015

loving Emily, part 2!

I gave the links in yesterday's blog post (click here!), but just to catch you up:  Saturday we drove 540 miles round trip in 14 hours to tour the Emily Dickinson Home and Museum in Amherst, Mass, the Bridge of Flowers in Shelburne Falls, Mass and came home via the beautiful Deerfield River and Mohawk Trail State Forest in Mass.

If you are a lifelong admirer of Emily Dickinson's poetry and genius, it was SOMETHING to be in her room, looking out her window and even seeing her kitchen implements.  The tour was superb.
She was from a prominent family and never married or moved.   She was very well educated and spent her life living with her family, gardening, reading, baking, playing with niece and nephew, and WRITING.  Letters and poems in the thousands, most discovered after her death, only a few published in her lifetime.  Considering most poetry of the time was rhyming and perhaps sentimental, she could write brilliantly about anything ordinary and used clever forms and the occaisional unconventional rhyming scheme.  A very modern poet, 100 years before her time, still fresh.

I had never been to the bridge of flowers and good GOLLY Saturday was the gorgeous day to be there, and later we stopped in the Mohawk Trail State forest....a superb day!  Like I say, read yesterday's post for more pics and info and links :)

Emily's garden.

Bridge of flowers:  in 1929 a defunct railroad bridge was taken over by the town and turned into an amazing flower garden!

I always like to stop in the Mohawk Trail Forest, thousands of acres I havn't seen yet...

Sunday, June 14, 2015

LOVING EMILY: a road trip, part one....

(Dickinson St, across the street from Emily Dickinson's house! Amherst, Mass...)

270 miles each way, about 4.5-5 hours drive times two....where did we go for the DAY?
We told friends we were going to the Emily Dickinson home and museum in Amherst, Mass and they said "oh, you're staying a couple of days?".
Nope, up before dawn and on the road at 6, in the museum and buying tickets for the 11 o'clock tour just before was AWESOME and I'll tell you more about it Monday (you drive for ten hours and it is not like you are doing anything, but golly you get TIRED and your body aches, doesn't it?).

We took the slow road home, the verrrrry slow road, through the beautiful Berkshires of Western Mass. stopping at the Bridge of Flowers in Shelburne Falls (on maybe the MOST perfect day of the year to do so) and also at an old favorite, the Mohawk Trail State Forest....

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I am a full-time studio potter, sculptor, and dog walker, married to superhawt Missus Tastycake.