Monday, January 10, 2011

The Shop's All Ajar!

In the comment section of my last post Patricia Griffin said...

"Your clean studio is eye-candy. Inspiring!"

Well, I'm back to doing what I do best...messing it up. Heh.

I made these medium sized (10 pound) jars this afternoon. Round, they are. Very Round. How now round The clay was throwing so well, I had to be careful not to throw the walls so thin that they only had one side.

It's horrible to suddenly discover that jars you just spent hours making, rather than having walls that have two sides (as all good jars should), only have an outside, but no inside.
Of course, jars hold exponentially more stuff without the restriction of inside walls. Without walls, even the smallest of jars could conceivable hold, say, an automobile or even a small house. But once you have both an outside AND an inside defining the jar, it is only then that you can actually say, for instance, "This is a four gallon jar."

It's a tough concept to grasp. Being a potter is tough mental work and not everyone is cut out to tackle it.


  1. If you figure out a way to throw Klein Bottles* on a potter's wheel I will be quite impressed.

    *Klein bottles have only one side. They're 3 dimensional Mobius strips

  2. Lookin good. I've been recycling. I have a door that's now a jar.

  3. If you figure out how to throw "Kline" bottles would definitely not be impressive, but these jars with two sides are very impressive! It's good what you do. I'm glad that you're doing the heavy mental lifting and not me, because it took me a while just to wrap my feeble one sided brain around those physics.

  4. So what are the implications for double walled jars that are too thinly thrown? Is that 2 outsides missing two insides? Is that twice the capacity (a subdivision, perhaps)...or is it an exponential factor (a suburb)?

  5. clean is only a challenge for getting things dirty again.
    Love those fat, round jars!
    I don't give a hoot about the walls they will hold all you would want and more!

  6. Hey guys,

    Thanks for the replies. I've been thinking of presenting a workshop for developing this idea of one-sided pots. I think I'll title the workshop "Plein Air Potting", and we workshoppers will all go out into the great outdoors and conceive of pots big as canyons and pitchers that pour out rivers.

    After we're done doing all of that exhausting conceivin' and conceptualizin', we'll find a nearby tavern and lift a few of those old, pedestrian, physical tankards.

    I think this is a workshop with some real possibilities. I'll be working on the sign-up sheet today.

  7. do you have a link on your website to sign up for your plein air potting workshop?
    thanks for the shout-out in this post... I'd better update my blog... or maybe clean up my studio...

  8. Patricia,

    Here's a hint that I intend to use myself:

    Clean shop once.
    Take pictures.
    Mess up shop.
    Post old pictures.

    Nobody will ever know the difference as long as you're not also in the picture wearing a leisure suit or a pair of those upside-down glasses that might date the photo.

    Wait. I just typed that out loud, didn't I?

    Now I need to find a new ruse.