Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Misc notes

After Thanksgiving, my dates got slow down and seems to be ready for hibernation. HAHAHA We bought a bigger TV, air compressor and Dremel on black Friday sale which made us happy.

Ken become three years old on Dec 6th, and he got a toy chain saw as his birthday present from us. On the birthday morning, he was exited about his new tool and went wood pile and tried to cut fire wood. Then he started crying so hard because he couldn't cut as Takuro's huskbarna does. He is too young to use a real one yet. HAHAHA

It's a toy
We will try to work on our studio renovation (install insulation on the wall) in this holidays, so stop working on making pots for a while. We have been super busy this year.... we finished up kiln building, had 5 times wood firings, got a new born baby in May (this is a big deal for me), had many shows, and etc. So I think it's not bad idea to take away from making pots for a couple of months.   But I will sometimes keep posting news, thoughts and any progress I see.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Celebration of Seagrove Potters 2

Just quick update. There were many customers and seemed like it was good success this year, too. I took several shots, and I should have took more, but my hands were full because of holding 19 pounds baby all the time.

STARworks Ceramics had booth, sold many tools and clays,
also donated lots of clay for throwing demo and kids clay booth

Bulldog Pottery

Just hungry a bit

Thank you very much for coming and supporting Celebration of Seagrove Potters. 
Hope to see you next year. Have a great Thanksgiving.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Celebration of Seagrove Potters

Takuro and I as Studio Touya take part in Celebration of Seagrove Potters this year again, and we have many wood fired pots for sale. After our trip to VA, we made display walls and pedestals to make pots look a bit better. 11/19 (Fri) is Gala night (preview and party), and sale is going Saturday and Sunday. Hope there are many people and lots of sale for all potters.

Large platters, vases and bowls
Functional table wares
I will post more later.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Anagama Firing in Farmville, VA

It was super busy weekend. 

On Friday (11/12), we had friends visit. 
Joe and Christy, who used to live in Seagrove and moved to Wisconsin two years ago, came to Seagrove and visited us. It was so glad to see them. 
Windy Ridge Pottery:
Our living room is approx. 150SF and there were 12 people plus two children in it. 
We had good food, drinks and time. 
Joe and Tomo
On Saturday (11/13), we packed everything we needed and headed on Raleigh to receive Tomo's Japanese passport at the Japanese language school. The consulate of general of Japan in Atlanta comes to eastern NC once a year and we couldn't miss this chance. There were lots of Japanese people at school and we felt like we were in Japan.

On the way to VA, we picked up used exersaucer (kind of entertainment chair) for Tomo in North Raleigh and it was only $10. At least he can stay in it for 10 minutes and I can go to bathroom without worry.
Big machine
We kept driving to North, and we arrived at Randy&Cricket's place at 5pm.
They started Anagama firing from Tuesday and that Saturday was supposed to be the last day of wood firing. Front got pretty high (cone 12 soft) but back side was about 1100 Celsius and at that point, our goal was to get cone 10 down in back. 

We need more wood!
It was really cold and I had to take kids to guest house at 9pm.
Takuro got in the shift and he helped firing through the night.

On Sunday morning (11/14), I woke up at 5am and waited Takuro gets home so that I might be able to help firing, but he came back at 8am. It must be long and tiring night.

At 8:30am, I took kids with me and went to kiln so that Takuro was able to get better sleep, and firing was still going on but back got good heat and temperature. Randy, Cricket, and young artists from Cub Creek were working hard to get work done.
closing front
Ken cleaned up fire wood pile
Ken watch Randy to make kiln clay
Ken is talking to Mr. Bart
I just watch firing
Their first anagama firing was end at 11am. 5 days firing, lots of work. 

Takuro woke up around noon and we packed stuff, then left Farmville in early afternoon. Came home safely, ate a little bit food and then passed out before 9pm.

What a weekend.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Unloading kiln 11/10

Best shot of Shibata boys

Just quick update.

We unloaded kiln on Wednesday morning and it seemed OK firing. I need to experiment ash glazes test. But there are some good pots at least.
Taking down door bricks
2nd chamber door side
2nd chamber wall side
3rd chamber is good for refiring
We had a Japanese beginner potter, Yamazawa-san from Durham, NC this time and he brought a lot of nice Japanese food (of course sushi) because he owns a Japanese restaurant in Durham. There are many Japanese restaurants in US but not many which Japanese people really own. His restaurant, Yamazushi use good ingredients and fresh seafood and make real Japanese dishes.

There are more things to do before Celebration of Seagrove Potters. 
Gambatte. We are almost there.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Wood Firing #5 11/6

It was really busy week&weekend.
We opened up kiln and started glazing on Wednesday,
and took all day for loading kiln on Friday.
Here is the kiln log:

6pm Closed door bricks and started gas preheating
12am Started burning wood
6am 500c
12pm 1000c
4pm 1200c, cone 7 down and salt kick in
8pm 1260c, cone 10 down in the coolest spot
      2nd chamber done
      started stoke wood for 3rd chamber, 1000c
10pm 1200c
1am cone 10 down, 3rd chamber shut down
Totally 25 hours by fire wood, 6 hours by gas preheating.

Lots of thanks to:
Yamazawa-san (Yamazushi, Durham)

We were so tired and also glad we could finished the last wood firing in this year.
Totally five wood firings in 2010.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Wood bisque firing 10/31

It was incredibly busy week. There was an annual gathering event at Central Park/ STARworks on Thursday and Takuro came home pretty late everyday whole week. Then we had our bisque firing home and no rest at all. Our children seemed to have fun around kiln site, but Ken missed Halloween (he even didn't know it) and we felt so bad about it. Maybe next year.
Mowing at break time
an Entertainment while I was stoking

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Unloading kiln 10/13

2nd chamber
We unloaded kiln last night and we got good results. Cone 10 down all spot and some parts got 11 down. Very efficient, easier and clean wood firing. 

3rd chamber

pots pots and pots
Large work will be sent to the Cub Creek Foundation for the Ceramics Arts and there will be the Cub Creek Exhibition at Coe College, Ceder Rapids, Iowa. Cub Creek studio is where Takuro and I were residency artists in 2003, and it's established by John Jessiman who is one of the best Ceramic educator in US.. More info about Cub Creek:

Monday, October 11, 2010

Wood Firing #4 10/9

It was really busy weekend, again.

We loaded kiln on whole Friday, closed up door at 9pm, then started preheating by gas burner. This time we put pots not only 2nd chamber but also 3rd. Takuro started stoking wood from 12am and kept doing until 7am which was the hardest shift.

Here is the kiln log:
10/8 (fri)
9pm start preheating
10/9 (sat)
12am start wood
7am 650 degrees in Celsius
10am cone 010 down
12pm 1100c
3pm 1200c cone 7 down, kick in salt (10 lb)
5pm 1240c cone 10 moving
7pm start stoking wood for 3rd chamber
7:30pm 2nd chamber 1250c, cone 11 down (hottest spot),
         cone 10 down (coldest spot), 2nd chamber stop firing
9pm 3rd chamber cone 11 down (bottom), cone 10 down (top),
       stop firing, all done!

Totally 21 hours (about 20 hours for 2nd, 2 hours for 3rd) by wood, 3 hours preheating by gas.

It was much easier wood firing compare to past firings. I think lots of pots in 3rd chamber made whole firing better and manageable. It must have been a lot of waist of heat without pots in 3rd. For the next firing, we will put some refired pots in 3rd.

Lots of pots
Loading supervisor (front)
Takuro's large jars and my large plates for a coming exhibition
Pots in 3rd chamber as a new experiment
Firing supervisor (left)
Lots of frame and smoke
almost done

Thank you very much to:
Santiago Ramirez
Jugtown Pottery Family
We couldn't have done without your help.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Show Opening at Mredith College

We went to see the show "DIRECTions: Native Clay" at Meredith College in Raleigh, NC on SUnday because there was a show opening, and it was really fun trip for us. Especially Ken found friends (several similar age children) and he has GREAT time.

Mederidh College has a ceramic program and there is nice and organized clay studio and kilns. The teacher and ceramic artist, Mr. Warner Hyde gave us a quick tour in the school.

Gas plus wood sail kiln
Well organized clay studio
Takuro Shibata, Wood fired Vases "Woods"
Hitomi SHibata, Wood fired Large Bowl "Hana"
Hitomi Shibata, Wood fired Large Platter "Sankaku"

Daniel Johnston, Seagrove, NC
Jordan Taylor, Chapel Hill, NC
Jordan Taylor, Chapel Hill, NC
Mark Hewitt, Pittsboro, NC
Sunshine Cobb, Portland, OR

More details are here:

"DIRECTions: Native Clay"
September 12 - October 31, 2010

16 artists from across the U.S. present functional and sculptural objects made from hand dug local clay and fired in wood burning kilns. The variety of artistic visions is great, the touch of the hand to a natural resource is a marvel in today’s high tech world. 

Frankie G. Weems Art Gallery Meredith College
3800 Hillsborough St.,
Raleigh, NC 27607