I know I shouldn't complain about the heat, living here in the mountains, knowing most of my family lives in the deep South, but goodness, it has been pretty hot here these days. I think it's been affecting my work in the studio, or maybe that's just a good excuse. We were lucky to get an afternoon shower today, though.
I had some good friends stop through this weekend, Cassie Ryalls and Ann Bartges, other clay artists that were residents with me at Odyssey. Cassie will be moving back here very soon! She has been pursuing a post baccalaureate program in the clay department at the University of Florida.
The other part of my weekend I found myself succumbed to the gentle crackles of a wood kiln. Will was firing his wood kiln and I helped him out with the preheat, some stoking today, and more importantly, with some of my mom's famous ice cream pie. You can't wood fire without ice cream!
It was pretty hot around the firebox, and this huge spider gained our constant attention as we were either eyeing the pyrometer for the kiln temperature, or the spiders' latest whereabouts.
I normally hang around for his whole firing, but had to reluctantly tear myself away to get back home to get some work done. I knew Bobo would be there to carry on through part of the night, aka Captain Conepack, the other significant member to the Roan Mountain Ramblers, or North Mitchell Stokers. This is Shane Mickey, for those of you who don't know. We all end up running around Will's kiln in the middle of the night tossing wood in, checking cones, and rambling about things. It's funny, I feel like I'm missing out on something when I'm not around to see the outcome, but I had to tell myself, yes, Joy, wood will still burn when the kiln is 2300 degrees Fahrenheit, the cones will drop, the soda will get in, and it will finish off in the wee hours of the morning as the birds are cheerily awakening to their next day on Roan Mountain.