peaches


peaches
Originally uploaded by Bridgman Pottery
preserving the last of this summer's peaches and running have been what I've been up to. My pottery-making has stunk, and rather than report constant struggles and failures, I've stayed out of this space and in my kitchen. But I've been frustrated by glaze failures- entire kiln loads need to be reglazed and fired, because no matter how much I mix the glazes, what I add to them, or how smoothly I apply them, they come out streaky. I try really hard not to be a perfectionist, but I want my work to be consistent. Work from this week hasn't made the grade. The few pieces that I did think were good enough to send out got complaints. Swell.

My throwing has been Craptastic. My arms are beginning to hurt again, but I think that's from what I'm knitting more than pottery work. But if my arms are hurting, I can't throw for more than 45 minutes a day. Not much time to get things done there. I managed 20 egg cups and some butter bells this week. Not the best way to build up inventory. I think the solution is to put away the knitting.

I got a new mixing tool for my drill that promised to mix everything more quickly and smoothly. I had hopes that this would help solve my glazing problems. It did mix quickly. All over the carport. I lost 1/4 of a gallon of new expensive glaze to the carport floor. I wanted to cry about it all and quit pottery-making entirely by Friday.

The single good pottery-related thing this week: some ceramic icons for the Martyrs of Memphis celebration this weekend (those did turn out well, happily, but Sister Constance is with me whenever these works are concerned- everything goes smoothly, and for that I am very thankful).

So I give you peaches. We picked more than 40 lbs on Labor Day. I canned, pureed, froze, dried peaches all week. And made splendid peach sangria out of the leftover syrup from canning. The plain syrup is all gone, but I have two 8 oz jars packed full of basil and peach syrup for later. Pottery- no progress. Peaches- a dwindling pile of fresh, a growing stack of preserved food. Yeah, that's what I'll focus on.

I'll get back to pottery this week. Much glazing to do, more throwing. Figuring out some different (safer- for my lungs) ways to do my speckled egg glaze (so far these experiments have been failures. I have another idea or two up my sleeve, but essentially, I want to avoid breathing in particulates. I don't need work-related lung cancer) . Better mixing (maybe a slower drill? My drill is eons old and has two speeds: off or in a blur). More tinkering with chemical additions to make glazes less streaky, because that streaking thing is not working for me. Less beating myself up about not producing "perfect" work. I am not a machine. I am not a factory. One customer complaint should not negate a dozen happy customers. No more peaches. More running. A better week ahead.