Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Pottery Cat?

Aloysius loves climbing into buckets, trash cans, paper name it.  Yesterday I was mixing glaze in a deep trash pail, much like the one below.  He has gotten into the habit of jumping onto my shoulders and peering down into whatever I am doing.  If It looks particularly interesting he will try to help.
Needless to say he is not allowed in the studio.  Yesterday he jumped up looked and decided to jump in......who knows what goes on in the 'brain' of a cat?  I caught him by his tail....he was pretty pissed off, but not like he would have been if he had gone in.  The imagined sight of a cat in glaze does have it moments.  The mess that would result has nothing going for it.

Kitty in a Trash Can

I'm trying to keep a step by step record of glazing and decorating a bowl.  This has a Mazerine Blue wash as a start.  The rim will probably end up darker.  My rule is to work from light to dark.  Blues are impossible to get off a glaze, but are easily covered by a darker blue.  The drips will be rubbed a bit to blend and will be incorporated into the design.

The test bowl is just that.  It has a cracked rim so it isn't good for anything.  When I am working with washes I like to try them out on tests.  It's too easy to get a wash too dark.  I'll use this for color density and brush strokes. 

15 1/2" platter with blue wash

8" test bowl with blue wash
I am only showing this example but I generally work on several pieces at once.  Everything needs time to dry between steps.  The further along I get in decoration the more I concentrate on one pot at a time.

I need to go outside and do some more Christmas greenery, if I go back into my studio I will encourage disaster.

Thanks for stopping by...........-s-


  1. OH GOLLY those grey tigers, man! We have to give Spike little places for him to act rebellious and he does not get rebellious and curious about, say, the real stuff, like glaze buckets. You know how it goes, set out a bag and a box or some laundry and FORBID him from going near it. ;) Thanks for sharing all this!

  2. Isn't your cat cute in the bucket. One of my cats likes to get in boxes no matter how small they are and the other likes to open cabinet doors, thankfully she can't open louvered closet doors where I keep my greenware drying. I once did a wash on a textured pitcher and cups with cobalt and it was so dark it was horrible, then I scrubbed it off with a brush and it came out ok which I was amazed at.

  3. Hi Gary......distraction is one of the best coping methods....but it has to be something new and slightly dangerous to explore. Some sort of a noisy bag with catnip helps. All the cats but Aloysius in particular have wanted a lot more people attention since 'their' dog died.

    Hi Linda....the cuteness factor is their saving grace. Kiki is good with doors...I found her working on and succeeding in opening the counter top oven a couple of days ago. I have put child locks on some things. You are fortunate to have a secure place to store stuff. I've been making enclosed shelves. Your experience with the blue wash is typical. I'm glad you were happy with the can never get all the blue off.

  4. Love the smart cat in the bucket! Our little Nigella Stopit tends to destroy things in the studio (she is a performance artist at heart!), and she has got inside my drying pots before now. Our much larger Ginger is very light on his feet and has never damaged a thing, he is quite good company when I am making things, but we usually keep both of them outside the studio. My biggest worry with Ginger is that he is obsessed with trying to get in my kiln shed where the electric kiln lives. I try to keep him out at all times, but once he managed to get in whilst the kiln was cooling (fortunately down just below red heat) and must have gone to sleep on top of it. There was a neat round dark brown patch of fur on his side corresponding to the size of the open top bung hole of the kiln, that took a couple of weeks to grow out!

  5. Your bowl has a nice soft peaceful feeling.

    Yes a cat dip would not be good!! imagine how peed off he would be with the washing you would have to put him through.
    Aloysius is a very cute cat....
    I have a door on my ceramic studio, but my cat sure does yell up a storm when I first go in there. He is such an attention sucker.

    HUGS Lorraine

  6. Hi Peter...isn't it odd how cats can be so different from one another? I had cats cave in the top of my small kiln.....came home from work....kiln warm but not hot....came down next morning top caved in with my kitty marks....I had five felines at the time and I think all of them were on top. Fortunately I always put a shelf at the very top of the kiln so there was no real damage....other than having to buy a new lid! Aloysius likes to get into anything kilns, dryers, refrigerators.....he does keep us on our toes.

    Hi Lorraine... a door! we are figuring out how to put up some sort of partition...Or possibly a door on the stairs! Still working on the bowl....progress photos will come.


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