Professional Needed

So not only do potters need to know how to use clay and manipulate it into fabulous forms, a functional potter must also know how to make these forms work right.  AND then there’s the glazing – that takes even more to learn.  Once we learn to make and decorate, off to the kilns to learn even more about how different temperature changes can effect the glaze.  Subtle changes in cooling the kiln or heating the kiln can make all the difference.  But I’m not done!  Now once you get something worthy out of the kiln, potters need to know how to market – and there’s a whole art to that I won’t get into – but I must say, photographing the work to look as good, if not better, in image than in person is another learning curve and essential to marketing.  This is where others may step in to help – and unless you know a really good photographer willing to give you a hand, the process could cost alot of money!

So I try to take my own shots.  This is one learning curve I have not even begun to climb – and it shows.  My photos suck.  I made a light box that hangs from the ceiling and holds 3 lights for brightness and is covered with a white plastic table cloth  to ‘diffuse’ the light.  I also have a grey backdrop.  My camera has a setting for white balance and I do use it.  Here are the results:

IMG_5216

Too Blue!

Too Yellow!

Too Yellow!

As you can see, white balance in my set-up doesn’t seem to do it. No matter what I do, I get a variety of results that do not seem to be the colors of my pots:

Too Blue, again.

Too Blue, again.

Too Yellow!

Too Yellow!

Not to mention the fact that my camera is always a bit skewed and just a hair blurry….

I use a Canon PowerShot S2IS.

Without the backdrop, light, etc, here is a shot of the table with some of my firing results:

Table of pots

Table of pots

Welcome!

Welcome to my new blog.  This is my way of putting up a web site without putting up the money.  Let’s just see what happens.

My name is Elise and I live in Bryson City, North Carolina – the quiet side of the Smokies.  (the other side being Gatlingburg; and if you are familiar with Gatlingburg, you understand the quiet side.)

In my basement studio:

Bisque waiting for glaze

Bisque waiting for glaze

I make functional pottery with terracotta clay.  My favorite shape is a teapot though I mostly make mugs.  I mean, who doesn’t want a new mug?

Highwater Clay in Asheville supplies most of my pottery needs – only one hour away, you can’t beat it.  Earthen Red is my main clay for now.  LOVE their P5 porcelain, but LOVE more the red clay for its gorgeous color.

3 years ago my husband, 2 dogs and I moved to the mountains.  I had tried a living in clay 5 or 6 years prior with beautiful soda fired pottery.  After becoming a librarian at Broward County Library and Boca Raton Public Library I decided I would try pots again.  This time with an L&L electric kiln.

I will continue my saga that led to where we are today at another time.

Thanks for viewing!