Friday, February 29, 2008
I've had it with February. Tomorrow is a BIG day, the missus, my niece AND my dog Buster all have birthdays March 1. In the meantime, February still stinks. I had fired the kiln yesterday plus blasting the heat, I am making great things this morning, BUT my hands are already frozen...it is hard to keep a studio and your water bowl warm, therefore icy fingers.
January is bad enough, February is a long slog. Went out with the dogs just now and it is 10 below, about 25 below C, with snow getting in the dogs' paws and more snow expected later.
I DID dream of beaches last night. A Great Lake in the summertime, and going swimming....
Thursday, February 28, 2008
When I began this blog one and a half years ago I had a 3-part plan. Now remember, my life is very ordinary and quiet, so it is surprising I was able to think of THREE daily items of interest. The list was: my pottery work that day, tunes o' the day and dreams o' the day. I became embarrassed about my dreams, left off music sometimes, added unicorns occaisionally, then started putting in a lot of pet pictures.
OK, I am not so embarrassed by my dreams obviously, and I hope they are amusing, so now I have decided to call it like it is, the official FOUR-PART purpose of potter's blog:
Daily dreams, music, pottery and pets by Gary Rith. There. No mention of unicorns, unless I dream of them.
You know how it is, a wide variety of Nigerians and Bulgarians send you spam and try to get into your accts. Potters are alway struggling to keep their secrets, as we know from the whole Kayla/Virginia thng, and now Shane writes from Derry, Northern Ireland:
"Hi,After trawling the internet looking for pottery related to flowers and plants, I found your site and I really like your work. I am studying art and design at school and I would like to include you and some of your pieces as my 'work of others' research. If its not too much trouble, could you email me a short paragraph or two about yourself (why are you interested in pottery, when and where you were born) and some information on the two pieces which are mentioned at the bottom of this email (size, inspiration, how they were made, technique).I realise that you don't know me and you probably aren't too sure about giving a stranger these details, but I am not asking for anything personal unless you are happy to mention it. Please get back to me as I am on a deadline for this work. I appreciate your help and your work, here are the pieces I am asking about;"
"Sure thing, except tell me where you are studying and live, which I think is a fair exchange!
There is a lot more info on me at my blog http://grpottersblog.blogspot.com/
which has my bio across the right side and many examples of my work and everyday______whatever.
The 2 examples below are easy to talk about. Sip, swig, savor is a plaque showing a pig dog and bunny eating and drinking, and was used in an exhibit at a restaurant. The theme of the show was sip, swig, savor. I enjoy sculpting little animals, and I also enjoy making miniature pots on the wheel, so this combined both. It is about 8 inches in diameter.
The bowls I made after I saw Japanese celadon glazed bowls in the shape of lotus flowers at a museum. My bowls turned out well, but I plan to do them again in a different way. Each bowl is a large soup or salad size, 6-7 inches in diameter.
I went to college to study painting but saw the ceramics studio my first day and got into that instead, 25 years ago. I have been full-time for about 11 years, and it is my career and income. I think there are a lot of ordinary brown pots in this world, and I like to make pieces that are bright and fun, which most of my work is. My wife and I lived in New Hampshire for many years but moved to Ithaca, NY 2 years ago, the coolest place on earth.
OK Shane, ball is in your court, who are you etc? Hope this helps!
Shane tells us a little:
"Thanks for replying so quick, it was a great help. I live and study in Derry, Northern Ireland. I am in 5th year at Saint Columbs college and I am studying lots of different subjects but I enjoy art. We have a great ceramics lab which is where I make all my ceramic pieces. I am still very amateur but I am improving.Thanks, Shane"
OK, Shane, but next time you OWE US pics of your own work, we'd love to see it here!!!!
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
I made some jokes about the missus, her hooded parka, and Kenny on South Park. Maybe I should shovel a little. The neighbors offered the use of their snow blower, but I am secretly hoping they just do my driveway for me. I have been nice to them lately! Gave them beers for their birthdays! This is when it seems like I am a very bad and selfish person.....
Another night of useless dreams. It was the 80s, I was single and in my 20s and a medical student (Laughter all around!) in a very dangerous New York City, which was nevertheless very exciting. I became romantically involved with Molly Ringwald, a surprise because I don't recall thinking about her much 25 years ago, so why does she pop up in my dreams now? As my girlfriend?
Enjoy this rather fabulous Pshychedelic Furs tune 'Pretty in Pink', one of my favorite 80s bands. I have not one but TWO pairs of vintage Ray Ban Wayfarers, from that time period, yes I do....
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Dreamt that I had gained two awful teenage step-children. The girl took off for who knows where, stealing the car. I thought I would break the ice with the boy by playing ping pong. He was nearly a foot taller than me, but he started a fistfight and I had to kick his a$$. That solved nothing. Then I am awake and don't feel especially alert or refreshed.
Monday, February 25, 2008
(Kayla and one of Kayla's wicked cool pots)
Sunday, February 24, 2008
I have had a visitor nearly everyday who comments here legit, using a blogger acct, saying 'Look here' or 'Look at this' etc. Anyone who clicks receives a nasty computer virus. Well, sitemeter tells me it is from Bulgaria. Phhhhlllbbbbtttt! I am using comment moderation for the foreseeable future.
Aara and Greta made a picture of me and I love it so much!
(Regular season's over....)
OK, so many things to talk about. FIRST OF ALL, our old pal, the high school potter, Virginia checks in.
"Hey Gary, it's been a while and just thought I'd check in, because, you know, i haven't in like, forEVER. sorry about that. Been busy lately. Unfortunately, not with pottery, that wont start again until April. My classes at school ended so i have to enroll elsewhere.
no, my friend, i have been busy with English. [hooray!]. my second favorite thing, aside from art, would be English. I'm taking honors English 2 this year, AP next year. I've been writing a whole lot, reading a bunch too. I started a book, and just got the first chapter done today. Started it weeks ago."
Regular readers of this blog will be disappointed to hear she is on a break from pottery, as she makes fun pots that potsblog readers enjoy most. But a book? That's fantastic news too, and I will ask her if she will let me share it with all of you.
As a 41 year old with very little talent or ambition or ability or energy I shake my head in wonder at youth: all those sharp brain cells! All that energy and creativity! In the Monday afternoon pottery class I am taking there is a 17 year old girl whose drawings would knock your teeth out. She is trying pottery to expand her admissions portfolio to college. You get excited about young artists and new visions.
OK, secondly, we can all admire my old pals greta and Aara's rather fine rendering of ME making pottery. Greta and Aara come over here sometimes for clay and burritos. I owe them A MILLION burritos now for this fine rendering!!!! I have always thought 'Gary Potter' makes a good joke, and now somebody has brilliantly put it together for me!
Yesterday afternoon we spent an extremely satisfying 2 hours watching Cornell women's hockey against Harvard. Harvard scored 4 in the first 2 periods, but Cornell's women must have had some snicker's bars and double shots of espresso before the third and final period, because they were FIERCE and scored 2. They lost the game, but winning the third period felt good. Supposedly there is less contact and fighting in a women's game, but it still looks rough to me. The player pictured above is one of the captains and also our old pal Denis' neighbor from northern Vermont, Caelagh Beerworth. YES, Beerworth, and you don't want to meet her in a dark alley because she is very tough. I love hockey and I'm sorry the college season is ending, but presumably the crummy winter weather ends with it, so....
Finally, I have to change comments. On a daily basis this blog's comments get a 'go here' type of thing, which leads to a VIRUS. I don't know what type of cretin thinks sending out viral links is fun, but I don't want them passing through my blog. So, comment as usual, then it will pop up a little later. Sorry! I love you all! Just don't want to spread this disease....
Saturday, February 23, 2008
I have given blood a million times in my life, but today I finished donating and was slurping down the juice and my head started swimming and falling all went black and next I knew I was lying on the floor with 3 nurses and my wife and I started to feel a little better but they moved to a cot in the broom closet (REALLY!!!!!!! the broom closet!!!!) and I was there awhile and then asked to go and my beautiful wife bought me lunch. I have never fainted before, but can't explain it. Before I gave blood, my BP was 120 something over 80 something, 1/2 hour after I fainted it had recovered up to 90 over 60. Wow! I wonder what it was when I hit the floor, like 10 over 9?
I am not a wimp, OH NO! This happened, remember, long after I was done with the needle...
(as for shoving me in the broom closet, I bet it is BAD FOR BUSINESS when people pass out after giving blood, and they know all the donors will leave!)
Friday, February 22, 2008
Potsblog friend Kate sends us this photo of when she was a little girl with a little beagle!
"Now isn't this the cutest thing? ha! That's me, in 1958, (I was 6 yrs old) with our house beagle 'Jiggs'. We were teaching him how to sit up and beg. I loved that dog - I think he died when I was about 12, it broke my heart. Isn't it something - it makes me miss him even to this day, just thinking about him.
We've got about 5-6 inches of snow already. It just keeps coming down. Have a great day, you two.Kate & Jim"
Thanks Kate and Jim, best to you both!
The Ithaca paper had an excellent article about beagles this week. Cute and lovable but loud.
"When Uno the beagle got caught up in the excitement of his big win at Westminster Kennel Club, he reacted just as a beagle-lover would expect: with a joyful noise.
“That's their way of telling you they're happy,” says Joan Kerr, who runs Penny Angel's Beagle Rescue in Ventnor, N.J. “They were originally bred as hunting dogs — if they see a rabbit or a bird or a squirrel, they'll bark.”
Celebrating a rabbit, a bird, your homecoming from a day at work, or winning best in show, it's all one to a beagle. And for those that love them, their vocal antics are charming, says Christine Tartaro of Galloway, N.J., a volunteer with Kerr's rescue. At gatherings of beagles and owners, “sometimes something sets them off and all the people have to stop talking. We all think that's cute,” she says.
Of course, not everyone agrees. So if you're feeling inspired to get a beagle after watching the delightful Uno become the first of his breed to win best in show at the nation's biggest canine competition, there are some things you need to know.
Beagles are already one of the most popular breeds in the country. Their compact size, easy grooming and loving nature make them excellent companions for the right family.
But they are also talkative and stubborn. As Kerr puts it, “Beagles have a mind of their own. You have to be one step ahead of a beagle all the time.”
Combine this with the focus on scents that comes from their past as hunters and you can have a problem. “They're going to follow their noses no matter what,” says Tartaro — even if it means ignoring your commands. “There are some dogs that are eager to please. With beagles, sometimes it's ‘Make me!”'
This makes them bad candidates for play at your local off-leash dog park unless it's very securely enclosed. And you need to be serious about your own fencing, as well. Escaping the yard again and again is one of the main reasons beagles are surrendered to Kerr's rescue.
“Even if you have a fenced yard — some will even dig under a fence and go,” Tartaro warns.
All this means that sometimes owners find the dogs give them more than they bargained for: Kerr's organization rescues more than 300 beagles a year just in her local area around southern New Jersey. "
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Me and the missus are playing the Juno soundtrack over and over and over and over, with this tune our most favorite. Here's Ellen Paige and Michael Cera singing it from the movie, and then The Moldy Peaches singing the original. Oooph, sad and sentimental.
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
'Everyday nonsense, pottery and pets by Gary Rith', I think that will be the new potsblog credo.
This blog tends towards nonsense and pets more than anything else, though, right?
This whole thing about Uncle Fidel 'retiring' got me thinking. I am an anarcho-punk progressive potter and pig-loving vegan, but no fan of thuggish Stalinists, fascists or republicans. I am, however, a fan of Bart's creator Matt Groening. Ever notice that good cartoonists never run for office, but wisely sit on the sidelines throwing comic arrows into the pile instead?
I must be tired, rambling like this, where's the beagle, where's the bed?