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The Lucy Fagella Pottery Blog is where I share the how the pottery is made. Pottery process is a beautiful thing… watching a pot rise up from a lump of clay at the wheel, or seeing a work table filled with freshly thrown pieces. This blog focuses on process shots, pottery videos, the work table at the end of the day, and some finished work fresh from the kiln.

mugs waiting for the firing LucyFagella

 


Baseball Mom

Ok so once a year I post about something other than pottery… and that would be about baseball.  I have two sons who are baseball players so I get pretty busy this time of year being a baseball mom. Pottery making hours dip a little these couple of months.

This season has been particularly busy as my oldest son Luke’s varsity team at Greenfield high school won the Hampshire league championship, then went to the playoffs for Western Massachusetts… winning the quarter finals, semi finals and then the finals today!  They were all great playoff games.  Todays game was played at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst… which btw is the university that Luke is attending this fall. 

They now go on to the semi finals for state champs against Central Mass on Tuesday, hopefully winning that, to play the winner of Eastern Mass. for the State Championship.

My other son Andrew (a freshman) was called up from the JV team for the playoffs to gain some experience and to warm the bench. It is nice that he got the chance to be on the same team as his brother. When Luke got the team on the board with a deep RBI to left center,  he was there to greet him!

western Mass champions Luke with a RBI Bomb the brothers after Lukes RBI

Studio Entrance in Spring

I can show you a photo… but I wish I could somehow fill your sense of smell with the sweet scent of  lilacs that permeate my studio entrance.  The weather this spring must be perfect for lilacs here in Massachusetts, because everywhere I see lilac bushes they have abundant blooms!

lilacs at the arbor

I have made some signs for my entrance, finally.  One for the gate, so that you know it’s the studio, and not to come knocking at the house entrance.  The other is just a welcome sign at the door.  I made these just before the Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail a couple of weeks ago.  I thought people might like the welcome sign, so made an extra which sold on the trail,  (also had an order for one).  Yesterday I made one for the order…  and some extra just in case,  maybe I’ll put them up on etsy!

After the RainEarly Spring Welcome

Then of course… my studio entrance is not complete without my studio dogs! 

Guard Dogs in Spring

Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail… Some New Work

Two days until the 2013 Pottery Trail.  This year is our 9th annual tour of nine potter’s studios throughout Western Massachusetts. We have invited eight guests this year… all very well-known.  See my earlier post for who the potters are!  Get get all the details on our beautiful brand new website! And come out to see us, even if you’re not local… just check our sponsors for great B&Bs to stay!

So here is a little sampling of what you will find on the Trail at my studio!

Sweet cups Blue Dessert Bowls bowl bottom Details of Blue pie plates 3 Spring Mugs Inside Green Stripey Waterfall

 

 

 

 

 

Gettting Ready for the Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail

Our 9th annual Pottery Trail is at the end of the month!  Have you seen our brand new website?  
We have so many guest potters this year… it’s going to be a great one!
From North to South, the potters and the guests are. Mary Barringer, Todd Wahlstrom, Molly Cantor, Daniel Bellow, Steve Earp, Lucy Fagella, Tom White, Hayne Bayless, Sam Taylor, Tiffany Hilton, Adero Willard, James Guggina, Eveline Snyder, Francine Ozereko, Kristen Kieffer, Donna McGee, Mara Superior.

April 27th and 28th 2013!   See our website for all the details, and a printable brochure and map! 

untitled

In Yankee Magazine

If you live in the Northeast you probably have heard of  Yankee Magazine.  It has been a mainstay in New England since 1935!

I am honored to be in the current issue, March/April 2013.

yankeemagNew England’s Finest.  The Made-in-New England Kitchen, tools and serving pieces from local artisans.

Pottery Apprentice

I have been wanting to share some photos of my apprentice’s work, Gemma Farrell.  Gemma is really into drawing images via a sgraffito technique.  Every thing she does is by hand… no they are not decals!  The images vary from realistic body parts, including hearts and ovaries, to birds, and feathers!  You can find her work at Pinch in Northampton MA.  I keep telling her she needs to sell these to Cardiologists! 

gemma 3 gemma 1 Gemma Mug with Heartgemma 4

Teaching my Apprentice about Kiln Repair

Today my apprentice Gemma Farrell got her first look inside of the control panel of my L&L Kiln. I really feel it’s important that my apprentices know every aspect of the pottery business, plus walk away from the two years with great pots.  Gemma already has the great pots, (which I will show off in the next post.)  She just needs the biz end of it… the part they don’t teach you in art school.

Repairing an electric kiln

 

Gemma learning how to fix a kiln

It was definitely time to change the element wires and the thermocouples.  How did I know this you might ask…  well the first sign is that the element wires are starting to grey and flatten in areas… but still work.  The most notable reason to change them now, is that the kiln is taking longer and longer to fire… a sure sign it’s going to break down soon.  The other reason to really, really change them now is that I do not have a big show coming up this month. It seems that kilns tend to break down in the middle of a firing, right before an important show or the holiday season!   My next big show is the pottery trail at the end of April… and I better have the kiln heathly for all the firings coming up!

Whew, take a look at that old thermocouple compared to what it looks like new… won’t be long before that’s a goner.  It’s been over a hundred firings… when that time comes along I know it’s time to take a look at them!

therrmocouple new and old

Big Pots, Shellac Resist, and the Flu

Why did I make big pots the first day of the flu?  Well I knew I was only going to get sicker, so while I could, I made ten little pitchers, five large urns for resist work, and three other large urns.  The second day of the flu I made lids, and slept. The third day I trimmed all the pots, and slept.  The fourth day I slept, trimmed lids, joined knobs, and carved urns.  The remaining ten days I’ve slept, carved urns, took photo’s and slept…  and vowed to get a flu shot next year!

Here are some nice shots of the urns in process.  It’s a very long process, between the throwing, trimming, and carving the feet and rim.  Once the pot dries completely liquid wax resist is brushed on to create the floral pattern.  (This process is known as shellac resist or hydro abrasion).  Then comes the long process of rubbing away the clay with a sponge, (which I thought would be a nice sitting down job while not having much energy).  Where there is no resist the clay slowly gets etched away.

willow watching tall urns freshly thrown

Just finished carving_lucy fagella Tall Urns Drying_Lucy Fagella

The carving process_lucy fagella details_lucy fagella Large Urns Drying_lucy fagella

Here is a finished mini version of the large urn… a little keepsake in my son Andrew’s hands. To see more of these and other urns visit my website and or LuciaUrns on etsy.

White on White Petite Keepsake_Lucy Fagella 

If you want to see a nice little video on this method, check out Ron Philbeck  , “Hydro Abrasion”  He explains it very well!  http://youtu.be/d_HHrNdPGIk

 

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Events

Lucy Fagella Pottery Events 2017

Lucy on Houzz.com

Lucy on Houzz.com

2017 Pottery Trail

Asparagus Valley Pottery Trail 2017

Lucy’s Interview on the PottersCast

Lucy Fagella

Aside from my studio you can find my work at the following shops and galleries.

Aside from my studio you can find my work at the following shops and galleries.