May 31, 2009

Lot's of Looking!

show announcement from the old days
when I went by the alias of O.K.R.A.

Just wanted to thank everyone who's visited this month! Over 10, 000 page views so far! WOW! I guess the firing and the Ferrin Show were interesting to folks out there. It was a busy month and it doesn't seem to be slowing down anytime soon. I am gearing up for a visit to Seagrove and my "cousins in clay" next weekend and then we are having our annual Spring Studio Tour the following weekend. Then it's time to fire the kiln again for the July show in Asheville NC.


Hope you all will come along for the fun!

May 30, 2009

Retro Postcard vol. 2

Another nod to our friend from GA, here's one from the old studio wall that has a nice example of an eroding bank of red clay, probably GA, but it could be anywhere in the Southeastern US or, ironically, Southeastern China. To take a "field trip" through the clays of the NC Piedmont, here is a very well researched and written article by Dr. Dirk Frankenberg, well worth perusing!
Thanks so much for stopping by to read what I find to be interesting.

Hawk's View

Our friends, Cynthia and Alex Stone built a beautiful cabin after Cynthia completed her residence at Penland with me. They live in Florida, now, but come up when they can. Alex is an architect and Cynthia a jeweler. They have a daughter who is the same age as our Evelyn, so when they're up from Florida we all get together up at their wonderful cabin up on Ashland Mtn., a short drive from our house. They have a web site with beautiful images of the cabin and from the porch looking out on the Black Mountains. They rent the cabin out to folks who want off campus housing at Penland as well as folks who want the retreat that it affords. They were kind enough to give us a listing in their links page and I thought I would give a shout out of thanks with a link to their site.

Stacey and her gal pal's are having a get together up there this weekend and I'm always in awe when I see the view. Here is a slide show of the cabin and and the views, as well as the hawk from which they took the name!

May 29, 2009

Retro Postcard / New Pots @ AKAR

Ron Meyers @ AKAR

Robert Brady @ AKAR

Since the show at AKAR of Ron Meyers and Bob Brady opened this morning, I thought I would post another retro postcard. This one from Ron and Michael's sales in Athens, GA. from 1995. I have a whole stack of the these cards from through the years. Maybe I'll have another opportunity to post them in future "retro-postcards". Here's some pots I "lifted" from the online AKAR show. Have a good weekend.

May 27, 2009

Making Cups

Back Home: NC <3's Pots

Platter, 2009, 12 1/2 " diam.

This piece just got back from an unsuccessful tour of duty at the POTR (potters of the roan) show at Mudfire. It's too bad it didn't go to someone's home down GA way, but I'm glad to have it back. I know someone will appreciate it at the Asheville Art Museum! I'm sending it for a special event they are hosting soon.

Just Do It

This was waiting for me in the mailbox this morning.
We may have to start a new feature here.

quit bloggin
and start joggin
to the brand new studio.
no more twitter
clean out the litter
and be a wheel sitter
no more myspace
cause your place
is at the wheel
and don't do utube
you big boob
get on the wheel


May 26, 2009


I know what you're saying? Is there no filter on this guy's brain? Can he ever just keep quiet? I know what Stacey is thinking as she sees this, "I'm gonna kick his buttocks into the studio and throw away that damn eMac!"

The answer, of course is, no, to both queries. My answer to Stacey? That's private. Some things gotta be!

Well, being a visually oriented person, [critically minded, negative, take your pick] sometimes things that are so commonplace and usually overlooked, snap out, and bite my eyes. As I began to clean up the mess of this postal mailing for the Cousins in Clay™ studio sale/kiln opening, I wondered where I should put all of this self stick backing paper. Is it really paper? Then I see that the brand I used for mailing labels, Avery, has this logo

that is clever in its design to look a lot like the recycling logo,
wouldn't you say? Notice the red color, red, not green? Is this stuff recyclable? Would someone with the knowledge of such things PLEASE answer this question before I get my bigg butt kicked, by you know who, so that I can get on with some pottery making? Maybe someone from Avery, (not their lawyer)? Get back to me.


the cards that didn't slide off
the table and onto the floor, AAGGGGHHHHH!

Oh the satisfaction from hand sticking this many cards....NOT. All I have to do is buy some stamps (self stick) this morning and apply those and I'm done! Oh, the joys of being a potter.
The cards are going out to announce the "Cousins in Clay" show that is happening next week over Seagrove way.

If you're not on my postal mail list, just drop me a line at michaeljkline [at] gmail [dot] com! What's a few more cards and stamps? Go ahead, make my day...


May 25, 2009

Penland Friends

Summers at the Penland School are a lot of fun. But that place can suck the time-spent-in-your-own-studio right out! Sometimes when friends teach at the school, I wander over there and get sucked into the vortex. Oh, but it's great fun, and always inspiring to see what everybody's up to. The summer has started and I've got a bunch of friends teaching. Hopefully I'll bring my camera and try to ramble and rove a bit. Here's a link to the summer class schedule at Penland. Maybe I'll see YOU there, too! If you're around, why not stroll on over to my place which is just a few minutes down Conley Ridge and visit!?!

P.S. There's a great way to see what's happening every week at the school. It's the "Photo of the Week" Check it weekly!

Back to the st-st-studio!

The Linker

It's a long story and I'm not exactly the person to tell it, but in a former life I was known as the linker. This nickname predated the "information super highway", so maybe it was a sort of prophecy, most likely a rearrangement of the letters of my surname. Here are a couple of recent stories that I read and thought I would share them with you if you haven't read them already.

In this article, Sarah Werthan Buttenwieser, explains, among other thoughts, the emotional connection one builds through the use of favorite pots.

In this article, Mathew B. Crawford, talks about handwork, specifically fixing motorcycles. But I think the writing is thought provoking to the crafts person as well! Here is a quote that resonated with me,

There probably aren’t many jobs that can be reduced to rule-following and still be done well. But in many jobs there is an attempt to do just this, and the perversity of it may go unnoticed by those who design the work process. Mechanics face something like this problem in the factory service manuals that we use. These manuals tell you to be systematic in eliminating variables, presenting an idealized image of diagnostic work. But they never take into account the risks of working on old machines. So you put the manual away and consider the facts before you. You do this because ultimately you are responsible to the motorcycle and its owner, not to some procedure.
And this,

The visceral experience of failure seems to have been edited out of the career trajectories of gifted students. It stands to reason, then, that those who end up making big decisions that affect all of us don’t seem to have much sense of their own fallibility, and of how badly things can go wrong even with the best of intentions (like when I dropped that feeler gauge down into the Ninja). In the boardrooms of Wall Street and the corridors of Pennsylvania Avenue, I don’t think you’ll see a yellow sign that says “Think Safety!” as you do on job sites and in many repair shops, no doubt because those who sit on the swivel chairs tend to live remote from the consequences of the decisions they make. Why not encourage gifted students to learn a trade, if only in the summers, so that their fingers will be crushed once or twice before they go on to run the country?

I hope everyone has a good Memorial Day. I hear my TaskMaster™ beeping. Better go to the st-st-studio and grab holt of some clay! There's no rest for the busy potter, especially the potter /blogger!

May 22, 2009

Righteous Wood Kilns vol. #3

The kiln at the Penland Barns built by Shawn Ireland.

The girls and I were taking a walk behind the resident artist studios, the "Barns", at penland this evening and I was struck by the simple beauty of Shawn's kiln and its shed. I shot this with the camera phone and I will have to go back and take a better picture of it with the Fuji camera.

Sky Test

Took this with the Fuji camera, swapped the micro SD chip and sent via text.

Beach Bum

small amber jar
bird in reeds design
from the Ferrin Gallery show


Is anyone having problems with viewing this blog? I guess if you are you won't be able to leave a comment, or even read this. There has been a lot of traffic on the site and maybe that is what some of you are experiencing. I'm checking into it. If you want to let me know, email me at michaeljkline[at]gmail[dot]com. Thanks...

If not, let me know, too. Just leave me a comment.

UPDATE: There has been a problem with the "followers" gadget on Internet Explorer and I have temporarily removed the "faithful readers" gadget until the issue is resolved. If you have a blog with the gadget you may want to do the same. I've had several readers who've told me that the page loads then "aborts". Thanks for trying to read and I hope this issue is resolved soon.

Leach on YouTube

For some serious head bobbin' check out this short video Doug posted this morning. Thanks Doug.

May 21, 2009

Juicy Bowl @ Ferrin Show

Here is one of my faves from the firing. It's a serving bowl painted with black under glaze and a great example of the exponential power of wood firing and salt glaze. Although the pot is glazed, not sure, either amber, alkaline, or tenmoku, and then put to the test of fire and atmosphere, completely transforming the painting, the throwing, and everything else I might have intended. The result greater than the parts. Another provident result is the runniness of the glaze without the loss of the brushwork. Yummy. This pot is from the current solo show at Ferrin. You can see the show online here.

Ferrin Gallery Preview

White Flat Platter with Gear Rim, 2009
dia. 13"

Leslie Ferrin has been a tremendous supporter over the years. I have had solo shows with her about every two years, going back as far as 1993 when Leslie was showing teapots and potters at Pinch Pottery, in Northampton, MA. It was great to unpack pots with Donald Clark as we have done before so many times before. I hope you will get a chance to go to the opening of the show on Saturday evening for me. Unfortunately I couldn't stay for the opening. I have a wedding to go to this weekend. [My fellow Snow Creek potter, Courtney Martin and glassblower, John Geci are tying the knot and I wouldn't miss it for the world.]

Leslie has put the show online and I hope you will go there to see the pots and contact the gallery if you see one (or two, or three) that you just must have. I'm sure they will be happy to wrap it up and send it your way! Here is the link to the pots at Leslie's.

10 gallon jar, 2009
h. 16"

May 20, 2009

Ring and Things

drinking from life's big cup!

I'm back from the trip and sitting in the S &D offices here in Bakersville. Ahh, home sweet home. I got back and remembered this picture that shows my lovesome sporting some fancy rings. The engagement ring was made by Jones/Doran of Kutztown (when they lived back here in Saluda, NC). It was great to see them on my trip and stay with them and their lovely children in their great big house!

Stacey and I celebrated our 8th anniversary yesterday! Yay! The girls did victory laps around our house, one for each year of our marriage!

May 18, 2009

Kutztown Revisited

Tess's asian salmon with spinach,
mustard greens, and escarole. Yum!
Notice the Sequoia Miller dish?
(Horses eye, again.)

I'm back in Kutztown and Tess just told me about an exciting place called Wild Persimmon Farm where she will be cooking "farm to table" in the coming months till November. Check out their blog "thick moon rough goat: reflections from the southeast PA rural underground" and get the dirt on this place!

May 17, 2009

May 16, 2009

Mobile post sent by klineola using Utterlireply-count Replies.  mp3

I'm Here

Yay, time to unload the Sube.

Bridging theGap

Just passed New Paltz, NY.

Just passed New Paltz, NY. Hi Ayumi, Jeff, Tim, Mary, and R.Van W.

Tech Difficulties

Sorry about the technical difficulties we're having with Utterli. I'm about an hour Pittsfield. Pics from gallery soon.

Wow The Rodale!

Unfortunately, it's not the Ferrin Gallery, where I'm supposed to be now. I missed my turn talking to Michael Hunt about the new kiln he and Naomi are building. Exciting! Anyway as I turned around and headed in the right direction I snapped this pic of the world famous Rodale Institute. Link later . (not Richard)

I love everything about this PA landscape, the spring bloom, the stone farm buildings , but wish I was closer to Pittsfield.

May 15, 2009

The Road To Pittsfield

Not the most glamorous picture, but here I am in PA where I've pulled over to send in this report of the trek.
The pile and jumble behind me is my precious pottery that I've picked to show at Leslie's gallery.
In some way it's like a diamond in the rough. A pile and jumble of towels, blankets, plastic totes, buble wrap, and cardboard boxes carefully transporting and cleverly disguising what I presume to be the best the past two mos. of work. We'll unpack them at the gallery tomorrow and rearrange them so that they can shine.

Kutztown, PA & Tess & David's house is tonight's destination. I'd better get going.

Until tomorrow, good night.

Got Pics?

green and amber glazes
ladled/poured over wax resist pattern

tea cup w/tenmoku

painted by Lillian!
tenmoku test

Just when you thought it was safe to catch up on all of the other blogs you've been putting off so that you can look at more pictures of pots from the most recent firing, (not), here are a couple more.

It's time to pack up the Subaru and head N. I hope to hit the road after lunch and drive up I-81 to PA tonight!

The Pitcher

the pitcher
amber/green glazes

No, not Sandy Koufax, not Nolan Ryan, not Catfish Hunter. The pitcher we've followed these last couple of weeks. Remember? Do you recognize it?

I rarely use the Willie Hillux glaze (green) but I wanted to try it on some of the lighter clay body (McKenzie Smith) that I was using. I used it on some other pots that I may or may not have time to shoot. I'm cautious when using the Hillux, because it's a real bitch sometimes. It's very sensitive to early reduction and can also pool as a metallic black mess.

May 14, 2009

More From XXX

tenmoku lined w/ wax resist black

breakfast cup
tenmoku w/black under glaze, incised

RJB slip with black wax resist
tenmoku on handles

The new tenmoku rocks! It's a recipe I used with Mark and Sam up in MA years ago. Mark has been using it in his salt chamber and I thought I would give it another go. It's applied very thin and likes salt.


These are all about 8" tall.

(except this one)

Let me know which one you want.
But you'll have to talk to Leslie.



Since we still have dial-up here at the Pottery, I clicked the play button on this Ayumi video and proceeded to load the dishwasher, vacuum the Parmesan that Lillian spilled off the floor and bring the camera in ahead of the rain . All the while hearing funny snippets of the music as the video downloaded. After about a half an hour I sat down and enjoyed this great piece that Ayumi has put together. May the high speed information superhighway be with you!

[thanks Ron for posting the link]

More From #30

slip highlights


Fresh Pots: Firing # 30

Here's a link to the March 10th post about these pots.

Here are the first decent images from the kiln.
Firing #30 was a complete success!
I haven't felt better about a kiln load in 6 mos. or so (last firing, tee hee).
I'm sanding the pots and setting up the fancy schmancy
back drop for some nicer, more formal shots.
I'll try to get them uploaded tonight!