Monday, July 18, 2011

My studio/house

I am reconstituting 2 batches of red, one white.  They are probably mixtures of a couple of each kinds, my slurry from throwing, and tags (bugers says my friend, Molly) from trimming.  I kind of toss them all together into a bucket usually, with water on top, and pour off the water every once in a while and put the slip mixture on a plaster batt to dry out.  It is usually a day before ready to wedge and use again...from that step.

Today's slip of red clay is on the plaster batt, while the white clay is on a dry wall board.  The white clay is closer to wedgeable, having not been under water completely, and having been sitting around for probably 6 months.  So I will be working on it in a couple of hours for sure.

Today I also need to change the water in the small (10 gallon) fish tank.  It has some red algae bloom again.  There's a bit on the sides of the 30 gallon tank too, but I can probably just rub the glass down and clean it up.  The water in the small one is kind of yucky (that's a color of green, don't you know?) and yelling to get changed.  How guppies can breathe is a mystery to me.

So that's the home front in my studio/house.  I have pottery all over the dining table.  And I just discovered a place I haven't started storing pottery in the kitchen.  The tops of the cabinets haven't been used yet.  So I'll start putting some things up there.  Guess it's the nesting time of my month (post menopausal women and even men have these).

I'm waiting till my friends in CA and WA receive their cats to post their pictures here. I thought I had a shot of the "tinkerbell" cat box that I sold on Sat. at the tailgate market, but I am unable to locate it.  Oh well.  At least I made some keepsake pics of the 2 that were shipped, but I'm afraid they werre taken (the pics) before the last details of fur were added to the glaze.  So the shape and form are there, but not correct colors.  Well, that's kind of my history with glazes.

Guess I need to get some more cat boxes made...they were fun, and people seemed to like them.  Actually a lot more work than I can charge for by hourly craftsperson's wages...let's see, at $10 per hour, when I charged $25 for the one I sold, I must have put in around 2.5 hours. 

When you clock it out...wheel throwing the figures took about 1/2 hour each (including wedging), trimming the bottoms, another quarter hour, then cutting clay, putting the inner ring on, another 30 min, then forming the face, ears, feet (if they had some) and tail, another hour, then bisque firing (which is done by the studio so I only charge against my studio fee) around 1/2 hour, glazing by hand, not dipped or poured, but painted...1 hour each...glaze firing (studio fee) 1/2 we are up to actual cost of making them.  Transporting, tagging, setting up at TailGate, and my share of the co-op fees...say another quarter hour... so what's the total now?
4 hours...

so selling the little critter for $25 netted me hourly wages of $6.25.  Good thing I'm independently wealthy.  (All my friends who know my simple fare on Social Security can laugh here).

The really irksome thing is that I could sell a vase shaped form for the same $25 and it would probably take just an hour to make it.  So what's the point of making critters?  Cause people love them, of course!  Including me.

And you all know I don't use money as my value system...just as green energy that lets me share what I can, live a healthy and simple life, and share and survive happily.

1 comment:

  1. I'm just catching up with posts. I saw you had a post with the cat pottery. Haven't got to that one yet. Looking forward to it.

    As for fish tanks. I used to have fish thru college. (years ago) I had a 20 gallon tall tank with oranda gold fish (the kind with the bumpy heads) and a pleco to keep the algae from growing.

    Here is a website on algae. Maybe a pleco would help you.


Thanks for making this a more personal connection by saying what you think. I'll post your comments for others to see soon!