New glaze – London Fog

Remember back (waaaaay back) when I was testing glazes? Well, I went ahead and mixed up a big batch of the glaze that got the best response, and I’m back with the results! A modern “London Fog” white on my porcelain clay, and an earthy eggshell tone on dark stoneware clay. (Yes, it’s the same glaze mixture and same temperature. That’s just what clay will do to you!)

I really like the results of this glaze, but unfortunately, it’s unreliable. One firing, it looks good. Another day….eh. So I’ll probably keep searching for my new look.

But in the meantime, consider this a limited edition of Amy Esther work – not to be seen again!

Oh, and did I mention you can order by Sunday and they will still arrive in time for Christmas?

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Published in: on December 18, 2009 at 6:51 pm  Comments (5)  

Sneak Peek

Think I’ve haven’t got some new wares to introduce this holiday season? Think again!

Yes, I’ve got my plate over-full many areas this time ’round, but I have been finding a little time to sneak into the studio. Luckily, some things are just coming out in time to feed the shopping rush! Look out this week for some brand-spankin’-new beer steins over in my Etsy shop, like the sexy red mug, above.

I think around the holidays, many women face the question: What the heck kind of handmade gift can you really buy a man? Problem solved!

 

Published in: on November 25, 2009 at 12:40 am  Comments (1)  

Captured Moments

dennis throwing2

Even D. has not escaped my prying lens. I captured a few shots as he was working on the wheel a couple weeks ago, and I think they look gorgeous in black and white. I love the smooth look of the clay against the rough textures of towel and brick wall.

dennis throwing5

I also loved working with the editing tools in photoshop to pull out the deep blacks and bump up highlights – it brings every photo into this magical graphic world, where everything looks a little more sharp and dramatic. I could easily spend all afternoon on this!

dennis throwing4

Published in: on October 15, 2009 at 10:38 am  Comments (2)  

Chocolate and sparkles

cupcakes

Ack! I know I’ve been totally negligent in my blogging duties! I’ve been caught up in all kinds of dubious activities (like work, classes, relationships and baking tasty pastries!). I’ve also been taking a cool photography class and I hope to show off my mad skillz soon.

For now, check out this tasty shot of cupcakes from my studio’s bake sale last week (no, I didn’t bake these. The walnut-fudge-chocolate-ganache-topped brownies I made sold out too fast for pictures!) Everything was delicious, and we made some nice $$$ to help teach art to kids in underserved schools.

Published in: on October 5, 2009 at 8:57 pm  Comments (4)  

Opinions needed!

porcelain test

Okay folks, here are the results of my glaze testing! Now, you may be interested to know that all of these samples are the exact same glaze recipe. Yes, it’s gram for gram the same, except for tiny adjustments to the amounts of two colorants – Rutile and Iron. Some of these have a little more of one, or a little more of the other, or a balance between the two.

Above, you can see the results on test tiles made of porcelain clay (most of my current work is in porcelain). Below, you can see the dramatically different results these glazes give you on dark stoneware clay:

stoneware test

Personally, I’m leaning towards the recipe with 3% rutile and no iron at all. It looks good on porcelain AND stoneware, and I think the soft porcelain look would contrast nicely in a bowl or cup containing a bright glassy blue on the inside. It also has a beautiful almost “snowflake” crystallization going on:

duo2

It would look equally good on stoneware, albeit a much earthier, natural effect:

duo1

Some other close contenders include this iron heavy, reddish/black version:

iron test

And a matte, earthy green with a lovely texture:

green test

What I pick may wind up being my dominate glaze for a new holiday line of work. What do you think? Which are your favorites? Can’t stand one? Inquiring minds want to know!!

Published in: on August 23, 2009 at 10:00 pm  Comments (9)  

Hello, Hello!

bisque

Wow! It’s been a while! I didn’t really mean to take such a long hiatus, but you know how it goes…”Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.”

I’m  happy to say that this summer has been packed to the fullest. I enjoyed a nice vacation at the beach with my family, took my GRE’s (and was pleased with the results) and enrolled in two website programming courses.

I bought a used Canon Rebel from B&H Photo and got a fantastic deal – less than 50% of a new camera! And it arrived not a day too soon, because I promptly dropped my old one in a lake! Whoops!

Speaking of lakes, I just got back from a cottage on the New York Finger Lakes. All I did for two days was pick 8 lbs of blueberries, eat barbecue and go swimming in the gorgeous warm water!

And, lest you think I haven’t been busy in the studio as well, let me put your concerns to rest! I got a custom order that gave me the kick in the pants to glaze and finish a bunch of work that’s been hanging around. Here’s a series of photos from the glazing…the finished products look gorgeous but I need to figure out how to use my new camera before I can share them with you!

bisque beer

Beer steins for the holidays! Here they are before the glaze.

The glaze is stirred vigorously!

The glaze is stirred vigorously!

Each cup gets a dip!

Each cup gets a dip!

Different colors get different glazes.

Different colors get different glazes.

Ready to be fired in the kiln!

Ready to be fired in the kiln!

Published in: on August 9, 2009 at 11:35 pm  Comments (2)  

Fun and Flowers

Wow, those teabowls were snatched up quick! Nice! Guess I know what I need to make more of…

Also new is this little vase with some whimsical flower stamps I was playing with! I like this because it was a little fooling around and fun for me.

As far as the glaze on these pieces goes – it’s actually the same as all my other more “honey” colored pieces! It’s just a little different color due to the natural differences in each kiln firing. This particular firing came out a very rich, dark color – almost a black, with white/gold highlights just on the ridges.  All the variations you can get, just from the flames in the kiln, are part of what makes pottery a lot of fun (and occasionally frustrating!).

Published in: on July 8, 2009 at 10:55 pm  Comments (3)  

New work

I know it’s been a while since I listed new work on Etsy, but things are finally starting to grind back into gear.

Here are a couple of new teabowls I made recently – I especially like the shape and the distinct “throwing lines” left by my fingers as I pull up on the clay!

Published in: on July 7, 2009 at 10:56 pm  Comments (5)  

Pot Sale!

We had our massive pottery sale funderaiser for my studio today. We had hundreds, upon hundreds, of donated pots for sale filling every available surface, nook and cranny. It was a great success, not to mention a ton of work, and D. and I are both whooped.

But, as usual, we managed to score a few goodies for unbelievably cheap (being a volunteer has it’s advantages: First dibs!). This year I was determined not to spend any money, but I just couldn’t help grabbing a beautiful Naomi Cleary platter that I spotted. (The one pictured above is not the same one I nabbed – I left that at the studio for now.)

I know it’s going to look fabulous in our new apartment!

Published in: on June 5, 2009 at 11:49 pm  Comments (2)  

Party Time

party nights

I’m exhausted today! Probably because D.’s apartment building threw a big party and I was up a wee bit too late Saturday night…

Here’s another little party-inspired collage made with my new InDesign skills and the help of some super talented Etsians (the actual party I went to was more of the flip-flops and playing badminton variety, but I was in the mood to fool with some sexy black, white and pinks tonight!).

Here’s a couple of fabulous party picks:

A handmade bra by Hopeless, inspired by Audrey Hepburn. Ooo la la!

Sexy heels with hand-painted embelishments by Crafttastrophe.

An eye-catching white and pink flower brick by Elegantware.

Published in: on May 17, 2009 at 10:29 pm  Comments (2)