Monday, May 18, 2009

A Dream:

One wonderful salt kiln, gas or wood.

I can't stop thinking about it. All I want to do is learn more about firing and taking care of my pots throughout their entire creation. Someone asked me today what my next step is in my journey-man days. I think they meant the next step in this process of apprenticing but all I could think about was a kiln. A kiln? Why, you ask? Don't you fire your pots? Well, yes and no. A little electric man fires my pots. An electric kiln has elements coiled around inside that switch on, heat up, and fire hotter and hotter until the little "cone" drops (bends) and then it shuts off. There is no flame. There is no dialogue between potter and pot at that point. Suddenly you disconnect and reconnect when the kiln is open. With a gas or wood firing, the potter is ever present, minding the kiln, checking on every detail and completely responsible for what happens.

I have fired gas, wood, and raku kilns with groups of potters, the seedling with little experience. I've also helped build kilns, move kilns, load and unload kilns. At a 2 week artist gathering in Wisconsin, we built a beautiful little wood kiln. It was incredible, from bare ground to cutting bricks to gleaming pots! But I don't know nearly enough to do it myself. I want so badly to learn!

If there is anyone out there who wants a firing partner, please, I will clean your studio and tend your garden ...

Some day, some how, I will have one, I hope.

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