Smell that? I'd be surprised if you couldn't smell it right through the digital feed on your computer!
First bisque firing of the year in the old kiln. I can't remember a February or March when I didn't have to survive the smell of burning off mouse nests in the old kiln. And since bisque precedes glaze.....and only glaze is hot enough to REALLY fry the suckers....I have to live with the smell through a few more rounds of bisque firings.
If burnt offerings give me any kind of advantage in having a successful year, well then, good for me. Too bad for the mouse.
So far, the new kiln doesn't seem to attract the mice. It's probably because I lined the outside with steel instead of the "space age" ceramic board that nearly disintigrated after only a year or two on the old kiln. The old kiln has lots of its brickwork exposed. I've watched mice scurry between cracks that you wouldn't think you could wedge a piece of paper between. Mouse bones must be made of jello.
The new kiln has in it some pieces that I've made expressly to sell on my new Etsy site. I've been dying to explore the new possibilities of making some work that excites ME, but that doesn't match the work that I take to the art fairs.
That includes some pieces that explore my past in clay. After the sheer magic of watching a pot being thrown -- my initial enticement into the world of creative clay -- the thing that excited me most in the clay world was the salt-fired crockery of the nineteenth century (as pictured below).
Through much of the eighties, my pottery reflected that interest in crocks. Now I'm going back and reviving some of those ideas and synthesizing them into a new whole.
Ain't it wonderful to get excited about the new ideas?!