Pottery making at the studio
I create each piece in my garage studio with a view of the flower garden, tucked in the heart of the Fox Valley in St Charles, IL.
Each piece begins with a ball of raw clay. My favorite clays are porcelain and a speckled stoneware, although a dark chocolate or rich Venetian red occasionally make an appearance. In the Marbled Collection, any number of these may be stacked together to achieve the classic swirled effect.
After a piece is formed and completely dry, It will be placed in the kiln for it's first firing. The piece will be fired to 1945° F. This transforms the pot from clay to a lightly fired ceramic that is still porous enough to accept glaze. This is referred to as the bisque.
In my glaze techniques I'll layer, dip and spray to achieve effects ranging from an opaque drapery of color to a signature watercolor like effect in more painterly pieces. Color inspirations are pulled from nature: olive greens, sages, morning light roses, and churning ocean blues. The pieces are then ready for the glaze fire.
The glaze firing seals the pieces, making them fully functional, food and dishwasher safe (unless otherwise noted), and matures the clay to it's stone like, durable state. In this kiln the pots reach the temperature of 2200° F.
After emerging from the kiln exposed clay is sanded, protecting surfaces, and making it smooth and pleasant to touch.
Certain pieces may receive a touch of gold- this is a toxic process which I limit to once or twice a year. In this case, the piece will be fired a third time before there complete.
The final bit is the journey to you, as a piece isn’t complete until it is serving its intended purpose. A favorite coffee mug to be enjoyed on a chilly morning, or a bud vase holding a couple stems. I hope these pots become part of the tapestry of every day life to be contemplated and enjoyed.