I've always wanted to live in the country and make pots, and I have been doing so for many years. It has been a dream come true. I love making pots in the solitude of my studio. Mostly I make functional pottery on the wheel such as altered bowls, mini-pitchers, mugs, and plates. Another favorite is making handbuilt pieces from slabs of clay. Sometimes they are large, colorful bowls that look great on a coffee table, and sometimes they are geometrical sculptural vessels that are perfect for flowers or alone as objects of art.
Firing my ceramic pieces is an all day event. I fire to 2380 degrees Farenheit (cone 10) in an updraft gas kiln, and it takes about eight hours to safely bring the pieces up to that temperature. While the piece is firing, I adjust the kiln atmosphere so that the right chemical reactions take place to bring out the beauty of the particular glazes I am using. For some glazes I maintain the peak temperature for a short while, for others the kiln can be allowed to cool as soon as "cone" is reached. The pots need to cool very slowly, gradually working their way back to room temperature...another slow process. The pots can be unloaded by the middle of the next day.
I love firing with gas and in reduction because there is a wonderful subtlety in the depth of color as the flame directs its flow and attention on each piece. The pots are just never exactly alike and they are so alive, carrying an essence from the potter's hand.