31
Dec

throwing while distracted

D i s t r a c t e d // throwback to throwing while distracted. Jason and our friend and neighbour, Tony, were in studio as I made the forms for the kitchener mugs. Our meandering conversation danced from the upcoming January 2020 ACAD market (we would have 9 days to prep. Ceramics needs weeks, not days), then to the resurgence of vinyl (enthusiast @lyleaspinall received a shout out). We argued about the existence of a comic book store on Southland and MacLeod Trail in #yyc. Hot flashes in men with empathy for women after a bout of medication side effects, and our suspected senility with not a good memory among us on this sunny day rounded out the convo. I was more focused on the chat than the pot, and I acquired a wobble due to my lack of focus. I should know better, but I enjoy companionship in the studio, and your mug will sometimes show the evidence.?Happy 2020! May you have the companionship you want, the laughter you need, and the good health we all desire.#ceramics #wheelthrown #wheelthrowingvideo #plainsmanclay Posted by Intagrate Lite

11
Nov

Doublespeed throwing

D O U B L E S P E E D // Throwing mugs and cups on this very chilly day, working down my to-do list while really wishing that this studio had a fireplace (and was surrounded by palm trees, while we're wishing…)#wheelthrown #ceramics #potteryvideos #ceramicvideo Posted by Intagrate Lite

19
Aug

video

Speed-up video, trying to find just the right curve on the bottom of this mug. ?#ceramics #wheelthrown #plainsman #pottery #albertacraftyyc #albertamade #canadianceramics #wheelthrowing #AlbertaPotters Posted by Intagrate Lite

19
Mar

my weekend

First I made the bowl: Then I carved the bowl: What did you do this weekend?

13
Jan

personalized

Typography is so fun. New items in the shop – custom orders for monogrammed mugs. Here is a preview of mugs that are in process:

27
Jul

the new girl in town

I love my husband. Today, if it’s possible, I love him even MORE. As we feasted in honour of our 13th wedding anniversary: J: “I made a decision about what to do with that extra cash” (selling stuff on kijiji is lucrative) C: “Oh?” (this was in a tone attempting to be casual without being “oh crap, what the heck are you buying? A taxidermied duck? A boat? Gun? Hookers?) J: “I want to buy a new wheel. Happy Anniversary.” C: (stunned silence) J: “Yes, really” C: TEARS OF TEARS WITH MORE TEARS I’m awestruck. A new wheel is better than any diamond, especially after the drama of my current wheel going off level and my intense emotional reaction to not having a wheel for even a few days (reminder: my reaction was panic and attempting to use socket wrenches and lots of prayer to every god/goddess I could think of) I wasted no time and I quickly found a thrice used wheel that needed a new home.  We brought her home last night. Introducing my new (still nameless) Shimpo VL-Whisper: She runs in near silence. I mean, SILENCE. I wouldn’t know it was running if I wasn’t sitting right there with hands on the wheel-head. I tried her out last night and after having the rattling and humming of my current wheel to intuitively judge speed and power, the Silent Queen was a big change – I was zipping way too fast, not realizing the speed or sensitivity. It will take a few pots before I adjust to the power, the silence and the responsive pedal action. I am so excited that I’ll be able to listen to audio books while throwing. Jay pointed out last night that the wheel just looked familiar . Well, duh – she’s destined to be mine so of course she looks familiar! On second inspection, sure enough, this is the style of wheel that I learned to throw on so many years ago. It’s fate, people. Can I cancel our family vacation to stay in the studio and play with her? Every two year old would rather play with clay rather than go visit dinosaurs, right? So today while I daydream of my new wheel, the bisque kiln is started and I can’t wait to get this load glazed and up for sale. There will be  some really cool mugs looking for a new home and with the new wheel, much more functional pottery produced in the next little while as I completely immerse myself in my new girldfriend. I’m off to find a Giffin Grip – is there any place to find such a thing used? -Cara

10
Jul

there was a crooked wheel…

I am passionate about working in clay. Passionate. I use it as a meditation, creative outlet, to show love to others, to show love to myself. The calm I feel when on the wheel is sometimes all I need to center myself during a stressful day. When people ask me what I make on the wheel, I want to say “peace” (and then I want to gag because that’s pretty darn cheesy). I tell you this because something pretty serious happened on Saturday. My pottery wheel stopped working. Well, it didn’t so much stop working as… well, I couldn’t throw. I struggled so much when making the first in this new tea cup series last weekend. It was wonky and I had to work longer and with more concentration than I have in years. I thought I was having a Bad Day or had low blood sugar or the moon was in mercury so I focused on other things for a week. Then I came back and tried again and when the next two were even more difficult to throw, I realized that Something Was Wrong. At first I thought I was succumbing to fumes since I share space with my husband and he had been working on something smelly the night before. I opened the overhead doors and took a break but upon returning, my mugs were still wonky and hard to make and I was starting to think maybe, just maybe, I was having an aneurysm. Or I’d forgotten how to throw. Midway through Saturday, neighbours came by to visit and while standing across the room, I glanced back and WOW, that wheel was hella crooked. The difference in height on each side of the wheelhead was almost a quarter inch. “Hallelujah! It’s NOT me!” I said to myself. And then it dawned on me. Or more like hit me like a bullet. THE WHEEL WAS BORKED. My first reaction? PANIC. My second was to call everyone I know for help. Unfortunately, that “everyone” was a writer, an accountant, an office manager and my husband who, although mechanically inclined, was having one of those back-pain episodes that is best described as incapacitating. My mom was out of country but I didn’t think calling her would help because I’d just bawl into the phone. Telephoning sometimes does that to me. I called the only ceramics dealer in the area but they were already closed. Once everyone had left, I did the only thing I could think of and I marched into the studio, grabbed a big bin of metal thingies and I started taking my motorized kickwheel apart. With TOOLS. I used a rubber mallet at one point. It was liberating and terrifying but I thought “self, it’s completely borked. It’s rotating off by at least 5 degrees. You can’t break it any more than it already is”. I then took a bit of a break to cry. I’m not ashamed. I was so angry and panicked and generally out of my comfort zone by about a lifespan that I just had to sit for a bit. I stared at my wheel and knew she was dying. That didn’t make things any better so I imagined I was the ambulance crew and dammit, she’s not going without a fight! (plus replacing her is a minimum of $600 and that brought me to tears again so I really really needed to figure out how to save her). I did find out what was wrong and we all scratched our heads. The entire wheelhead and flywheel mechanism was tilted in a way that the wheel didn’t shudder or wobble – it was evenly tilted but crooked enough to make throwing a struggle. But how to fix it? The husband had recovered enough by Monday to figure that the entire frame of my wheel had been twisted rather severely. Was there a tornado we’d missed? Was there a mosh pit in the studio while we were on vacation? No matter – his welding magic had my baby leveled in time to try it on Monday evening. Throwing is easy again. The wheel is fixed. So let me introduce my new line of spiral lotus flower tea cups – born from struggle and surviving in peace. They’re in progress here while I decide what colour they want to be: