MOUNTAIN ARTS POTTERY – A PRODUCER!

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Two months ago already, I had a chance to spend time in the pottery at Mountain Arts. It was a beautiful morning and I loved the experience!  What photographer wouldn’t want the chance to take photos of a pottery at work?  IMG_0627bw_sm

Even the tools used to create are interesting to photograph.small-0340IMG_0604bw_sm small-0623

IMG_0856bw_smThe whole room is full of so many samples and equipment, with light and shadow playing among the pieces.
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The clay is carefully prepared and managed.small-0408

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small-0671Each of the potters customize the workspace to meet their needs.

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small-1075Watching the wheel spin and a formless lump become a beautiful piece of pottery any  of us would be proud to own and use is amazing!

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small-1123Once spun into its proper shape, each item is dried for a time, and inspected for proper form.

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small-0402After that each piece is off to another wheel to be trimmed to perfection.

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IMG_1512bw_smFollowed by bisque firing before it can be dipped into the glaze.

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small-1425Not all the pottery is thrown on a wheel.  Many of the pieces are formed by hand and knife.

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small-0506Have you ever seen the Mountain Arts finished pottery with so many mixtures of color?  It is an art how they put those glazes together.  

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small-1444Even before the are applied to the pottery there are interesting and fun processes to observe (at least to a geek like me who loves to know how things are made).

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small-0541A drill with a whisk attachment (a very long whisk attachment) and a very large bucket go a long way towards getting the glazes just right.  And the glazes are carefully planned and selected – notes on the walls and windows to be sure all know which to use and when.

small-0372The application of the glazes is a specialized skill.IMG_0344bw_smWax is applied to protect the parts that are not to absorb the color.  Then the layers of glaze begin, with the glazer knowing just how much of each piece is dipped in each glaze.IMG_0411bw_sm

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Then the wax is removed and any necessary clean-up is performed.

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IMG_0986bw_smThere are so many different shapes, with medallions attached to some, and designs etched into others.

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small-0638The one thing that did not happen while I was there was actual firing in the kiln.  But that didn’t keep me from poking around in the kiln area – probably better to be doing that when it isn’t hot anyways!

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When the pieces are all finished many are shipped out across the region and even the nation.  Many pieces stay right on the property to be sold at the Coffee Pot Bakery and Cafe and store, which will be the subject of the next post, later this week.  As many of you know, the food made at the Coffee Pot Bakery and Cafe is A-Maz-ing!  Really!

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