Saturday, February 21, 2009

My Studio. My Place. My Crib.

Hey, I thought I would show you all where I spend my days. And many of my nights. Welcome to the third and hopefully, final home of Museware Pottery. There are many wonderful things about our new home but at the top of the list is the fact that it is heated. This winter - 70. Last winter - most days around 50.

This is our main production table. It's where my production manager, Nicole, spends most of her time. She's a machine and has turned the art of hand painted pottery into a science. She loves her job and tells me she'd come here even if I didn't pay her. Her Mantra: Don't be jealous of my skillz. See that big tree in the background? His name is Benjamin. I named him back in the day when I was reading The Secret Life of Plants and having regular conversations with him. Oh, and sleeping under a pyramid. I bought him in 1975 and placed him on a doily on my coffee table. It's hard for me to imagine my ever owning a doily.

This is our "kitchen." We call it that because it includes a refrigerator and microwave but very little cooking takes place in it. The water that flows from the faucet smells slightly swampy and always makes us think one of us farted. She who smelt it, dealt it.

The shelves on the left house my collection of mosaic glass - the remnants of an earlier creative obsession. Seven years ago, no surface was safe around me. I couldn't look at a piece of pottery without imagining it in pieces. One bottle contains the remains of a hideous bull fighter figurine found at a flea market. When the guy who sold it started to wrap it, I told him not to bother - I planned smash it. He looked stricken, like I was about to destroy a rare artifact. Because $3 can buy a thing of historic value.

This area is is behind the production table and is where we keep our tools, paint supplies and working bisque. See that tool chest? It was a Christmas gift to myself two years ago. $250 for the entire thing. At Sears. It's a Craftsman. Three pieces. Ball bearing drawer slides. That noise is the sound of me beating my chest. Men gaze at it with complete envy. Don't ya just hate it when all they care about is your chest?

Now this is where the magic happens. This is my workspace. The table is 5' x8' and full of junk. My actual work area consists of a small area in front of my chair. I usually blame the mess on a lack of storage. Total crap. Give me a warehouse and I'd still have junk on my table. Before having my son 15+ years ago, I was compulsively neat. My house looked like a magazine. I am apparently healed.

Our kiln room is efficiency expert Lara's domain. Lara is wicked organized - she's been with us - wow - 8 months and I haven't once had to organize her kiln carts. You've got to know I just issued a huge compliment. No one can touch me in kiln cart organization. Don't be jealous of my skillz. This room is exactly large enough to house three kilns. One foot less and it wouldn't have worked. As long as she stays tiny, she won't have to worry about brushing her cheeks against 1835* stainless steel. When we run all three kilns along with the room vent, the temperature only gets to 90*. That's a lot cooler than the 115* we've suffered in the past. While I have not seen how heat effects Lara's temperament, I can tell you it turns me into a biting, evil shrew.
Thanks for stopping by.


Debbie said...

That is impressive. It is so big and organized.

Sheree said...

That was three weeks ago. Things have deteriorated since then.

blairspage said...

Wow... that is an awesome operation you have going! When I was taking pottery a couple summer's ago my pottery man had quite the operation! He has a self-built kiln in his workshop in the back of his house. This thing is AWESOME!

Your work area is so neat and clean. Just the way Jim's "office" was! :)

Hugs - Tiff

Lorrie Veasey said...

Looks beautiful. Did you do the art on the walls? How much do you pay the team of expert housecleaners to keep it looking like that?

Sheree said...

The team of "experts" consists of the three of us. Nicole worked for me when I owned PYOP and was affectionately known as "the sink nazi."

The artwork is from a vacation to the Domican Republic a few years ago. I'm a pseudo artist - anything that comes directly from my hand looks like a five year old was in charge.

Are you suntanned?

sheila said...

Wow! Very nice! So neat and tidy! impressive stuff there! Congrats on your new place! (still looks like a magazine though)