Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Fired with new Enthusiasm.

My Plan this year was to buy a new bigger kiln,
we were hoping to get our hands on some grant money
that would pay half the costs.
But the Grant we are told is not going to be available 
until September at the earliest.
It all felt a bit Rubbish for our plans.
But I decided not to worry about it, these things always seem to sort themselves out.

Then a few weeks ago I had a message from Hannah McAndrew
up in Scotland.
There was a secondhand Kiln for sale up in Dumfries.
I checked it out and it was just the kiln I wanted
3 Phase 24" wide 30" Deep 36" Tall

So I Hired a 3.5 Ton truck with a tail lift so we could move it
and my Best Mate Martin came up to Scotland with me for two days
to help me shift it.
I took this video while i was waiting for them to deliver the van.

We stayed up at Hannah's house for the night
and Doug Fitch cooked us a meal.
Thanks Doug.

The sun set was stunning.
I was up bright and early and shot this video at 6am
I could hear the suction pumps from the Dairy farm
but couldn't see it through the mist.

Then we finally got to see the kiln for the first time
it had been made especially
and is made in two halves so it would
fit through the door. 
 Martin set about taking it apart
It looks immaculate.
it turns out to be 24 years old
But Has Only been fired twice in that time.

 The elements were so supple still
that we decided to leave them connected
but just release them from the grooves. 
Getting it out of the door proved to be a little bit tighter
than we expected.
A Stair lift had been installed in the hall way
since the kiln had been installed. 

 We got it back to our workshop 
Normally at this point I would say
 " In one piece"
But actually it was in two bits!
 it took us 8.5 hours to drive it home.
 We put it back together
and we are just about to wire it up.
We have all of the paperwork for it
look at this original Invoice.

I can't wait to start using it.
Yet again we have been blessed.

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Limited Edition Leaf Jugs

To Celebrate my inclusion in the New Edition
of British Studio Potters Marks.
I have decided to make 10 only 15” tall
 “Leaf Decorated Harvest Jugs.”
Each jug will be marked with my
 PJ & Barrington stamp & numbered.
They will also come complete with a certificate stating when
 and why the jugs were made.
The Jugs are offered for the special price
 of £100 each
available from mid-April 2015.
You can secure your special jug now with a £50 deposit.
Telephone Paul or Marion at the workshop 01460 249647

Each Jug will be unique and hopefully they will be fired
in a 15cft front loading Electric kiln
I am hoping to get my hands on in April.
more on that later.

Saturday, 7 March 2015

"The Bastard Executioner" and other pots!

I've been asked to make some pots
for a Film!
"The Bastard Executioner"
 it's being filmed
in the Cardiff area of Wales next Month
and I've been asked top make some drinking vessels that will
hang from the saddle on four horses.
This was a trial pot.
we have modified it from this.
I've also made a new showroom table
it's 8ft long and made from old scaffolding planks
that I was given by a chap in the Village.

Here are some of the modified shape bottles before I have 
flattened them and added the handle.
we had a day out of the workshop picking up supplies from
Bath Potters supplies
afterwards we went to Chedder for a coffee
it was here that I took these pictures of a small water fall.
This will give it a bit of perspective!
Our new web site ideas are being put on the back burner for a few months
so in the meantime, I'm adding some close up shots
onto the current site.
if you can see the detail you can appreciate the pots better.
I've re designed my workstation.
I've cut up my favorite book and stuck the pages on my wall
to help keep me focused.
I've also been updating some of the pictures on the web site
as some of the pots on there were made 5 years ago
and I'd like to think 
they have improved since then.

Sunday, 15 February 2015

Large Leaf Jug and workshop revamp

Over the past few weeks I have been working on this tall
leaf resist jug

at this time of year picking good leaves is very difficult
so in the end I printed some off the computer
and cut each one out.

This was a commission for a Lady in our Village on Valentines day
and Marion wrote some nice words
just below the handle
We hope to be doing more of this kind of work this year.

Also this year we felt our workshop space wasn't working as well
as it should.
Marion didn't have her own work station, which was just
plain wrong. So I came up with a better plan. 

It meant a total re design of the barn.
So we re arranged our shelving to sit along the side wall

 Then we built a low wall in the middle of the floor
 and we set about creating two work stations
 I've got mine up and running, but Marion is going to wait 
until we can afford a new wheel to set up her station. 
 It actually feels much better to defined areas to work.
The big long table that was in the middle is now  turned
45 degrees at the back of the workshop
which works much better when we are glazing.

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Art in Clay Hatfield 2015 and other shows in 2015

Our great start to 2015 continues with
our first attempt at applying for a stall at
Art in Clay
Hatfield House 3rd 4th & 5th July 2015.
I think I attended the very first show
as a visitor and I've been a regular visitor over the years.

We have also gained a stall at
Earth & Fire 26th 27th 28th  June 2015
Rufford Abbey

We shall be getting up to more mischief
with the potters games.
We are also going to be at two shows at
River Cottage this Year
the first is the Spring Fair in 23rd & 24th May 2015

We also have
the Taunton Flower show 7th & 8th August 2015
This is a great show with lots to do and see.

Salisbury Craft Fair
5th & 6th September 2015

So we have a great year of shows to look forward to.
Looks like it's going to be a busy year.

Friday, 2 January 2015

Country Homes & Interiors Magazine February 2015

The February Edition of 
Country Homes & Interiors Magazine
Came out today with a nice article about us.
What a Great start to 2015.

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Planning Pots for 2015

I'm starting to think about the pots
I'm going to make next Year.
So I've been looking back at some of the pots I made this Year
and Picking out the ones that gave me the most pleasure.
I did love making this large two handled dish.
So these are on the making list for 2015.

I made these Devon Jugs for the National Trust
and every time I come to make them I put it off
and off, I always doubt myself that I can make them.
But I did love looking at them when I had finished.

The other thing I love is Dribbles on pots
a natural dribble on a dish tells a part of the story, 
Over the past few months I've been trying to wipe these off
but I don't like doing it, so next year if the slip dribbles
it's staying put.
To me it gives the pot a freshness and enhances it character.

I also made a couple of Large Bread Crocks, both were a challenge
but I want to make two new designs next year and have them as a 
regular item in the showroom.

This Year my aim was to make more jugs & I achieved that
I made a lot more jugs including these 
water jugs for our Wedding.
So these are on the list. 
Pancheons have proved to be one of my favorite pots to make
but this next Year I'm going to makes lots of different styles.

I also made this very large jug for the Ladies in the Village
and I want to make more Large jugs in this style
as long as I can do the form justice.

Whenever I start looking for inspiration I always turn to my
Michael Cardew books!
And this Year they have set me on the path for 2015.
I haven't made teapots for at least 4 Years
and I've been reading about them in the potters Bible that is
"Pioneer Pottery"
To Quote If that's Ok
" A Potter will make more friends, and find sterner critics, through
his teapots than from any of his other productions."
So I'm going to put my neck on the line and have a go.

 These were some of my last attempts 6 years ago.
I'm only going to make small ones
and only ones I want to make!
so that I'm not under any pressure to make what someone else
wants rather than what I want to make.
Happy New Year to you all.
I'm getting itchy fingers already!