Monday, December 31, 2007

White Balance

I guess by now everyone else probably understands the significance of ensuring that a camera's white balance is set correctly... but I didnt. Never really had much call to play with that using my old Olympus. The new D80 has a few hoops to jump through to manually set the white balance, but once that's done, WATCH OUT! Talk about sharp color.

Next step: shooting under the lightbox with tungsten bulbs tomorrow evening.

The upper image was shot in the gallery tonight, totally black outside (snowing even!), so the lighting was a mix of halogen and incandescent. The second image is filtered using a mix of settings in Nik Color Effects. The lower two images were shot outside in the morning. My hope was to compare these shots to ones I took earlier this fall with the Olympus. From what I can see so far, the older camera had a better "super" macro setting. Also has an LCD which tilts so you can shoot from the hip or over your head. Going "back" to shooting through a viewfinder is kind of awkward. Almost makes me wish we had bought the D300, but then again, spending $1900 on just the camera body was out of the question. As it is, we spent another $200 on the camera tonight, buying accessories and filters. Fun fun fun.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

More pics from the NEW camera

I can't begin to express how jazzed I am about working with this new camera. I LOVE IT.
Makes taking pictures so much fun. I have loved my Olympus for the last 5 years and have definitely gotten my money's worth out of it. This new Nikon is just amazing. I guess the downside is that I have a few month's worth of re-learning all the in's and out's of this camera's controls and settings. Here are a few shots in the studio shot with available light at ISO 1000. Pretty sweet color and contrast and tight grain. IMPRESSIVE.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Today the new camera arrived. Finally took the plunge and bought a DLSR. All I can say is that the glass alone was worth it!!! Talk about fun lenses. I have so much to learn, tons to practice and a whole new bag of toys to play with!! Happy New Year for sure.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas to all

Today we unloaded our last firing for the year. Jam-packed with soup mugs, footed mugs and dessert plates and salad plates. Had a few small serving bowls in there and even a few oval pitchers. I probably wont have time to get nice images made before the new year, but rest assured, they are coming! The oval pitchers are really sweet; one in cranberry and the other in butter.

It is official: This was our last firing using the three glazes destined for the vault.... butter yellow, cranberry, and blackberry. We will still make it possible for folks with dinnerware sets to get replacements for broken pots...but we will no longer have regular firings with these three colors any longer. Bye bye blackberry, cranberry and butter. We hardly knew ya.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Last week before Christmas

And all through the studio....
BOXES were being packed and shipped. The FedEx guys must hate this time of year. Usually we ship 2-3 boxes per week. This week's tally so far, 10 for today, another 3 on Friday and 4 more on Christmas eve.

A few changes have been made to our holiday preview page of pottery. Quite a few things disappeared over the weekend. If all goes well today, I should have time to shoot some more new images of the pots that have come out of the last 2 firings.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

More pots for the Holidays

Another week has come and gone. Pots are coming out of the kiln hot and are being shipped out almost before they are cool to the touch. I am seeing more of my FedEx pickup driver than I am seeing of my family! We are very nearly caught up with the last of our holiday orders. If all goes well over the next week we should see the last 3 firings of the year.


click here to check out the latest pots from the kiln!

Beginning in January we will be setting aside three of our glazes: Butter, Blackberry and Cranberry will all be going away. We may bring them back now and again, but they will no longer be in production. For anyone who has purchased dinnerware from us in the past few years, replacements for settings will still be available, but we will no longer have these three glazes in use on all of our forms.

Other news:
We have begun work on the new booth design. Nancy is jazzed about some of the new design ideas for the booth. Lots of little details that we hope will come together cohesively over the next few months. March is starting to seem VERY close at hand.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Holiday Pots so far

Well, here we are... 20 days away from Christmas. I have been getting a lot of emails and phone calls from folks asking "WHERE ARE THE POTTERY PICTURES????"

To that end, here they are!

Nancy and I will do our best to fill orders, pull pots and to update the site as pots sell.

click here and enjoy.

Open Daily 10am-5pm (even later if you call and let us know you need us open!)

Cold Springs Studio Pottery
4088 Cold Springs Road
Trumansburg, NY 14886

607-387-4042 voice/fax

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Getting Ready for the Holidays

The past couple weeks have been very interesting. Sales have definitely taken an upturn. Quite a relief after nearly 5 months of being devoid of customers this year.

Good news: I will be updating the blog as often as every other day through the month. My goal is to try to help everyone see what is available in the gallery for the holidays. We are shipping FedEx almost daily at this point.

The bad news: we are NOT doing a studio sale this Christmas. Usually we have one either the first or second weekend in Dec. We are NOT doing that this year. Instead we are going to be open every day throughout the month. We are also open late many nights. CALL and we can make arrangements to be open whenever shopping NEEDS to happen!

Lastly, get ready for the email explaining where to look for all of your holiday shopping needs from the studio. My hope is that it will hit the email highway tomorrow morning!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Adding Insult to Injury

A week before Nancy and I headed off to Philly to check out the Philly Museum Craft Show we both injured our backs. Not the best timing. So with both of us down for the count, what happens? Orders start piling in. At this point, it has been three weeks with us not able to work full-tilt. Thing are improving but we are now wicked-behind. I had hoped to ship off quite a few orders before the Thanksgiving Holiday but most wont be ready for another week or more.

Last Friday NYDOT finally opened our road again. Route 96 is BACK IN BUSINESS!!!!
We joked that as soon as the road was open, folks would be flocking to the studio again. Well, we were right. Today is the third day since it re-opened and we have had customers each and every day!!! Not only that, we are now starting to see folks calling and emailing in orders!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Where things are at

Two weekends ago, Nancy and I BOTH threw our backs out. Nancy is already feeling much better but I am still feeling down. The real issue right now is whether or not pots will be ready for the holiday season. At this time, I dont see it happening! So, that adds to the stress.

In any event, I did have a chance to take some nice pics of some new pots.


Monday, November 12, 2007

Salmon Pottery - grand opening in Trumansburg

We can proudly announce that Salmon Pottery will be having their grand opening this weekend! From now on there will be someone in Trumansburg offering classes to the public, on the main drag through town, within walking distances of restaurants... SALMON POTTERY. Mary Ellen Salmon came and visited us about 6 months ago when she was first putting this gallery/teaching studio together. We are honored to have her showing a small representation of our work in her gallery.

PLEASE come to the GRAND OPENING of Salmon Pottery Studio and Gallery of Fine Crafts on November 17th from 4-7pm. See you there!!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

New Booth Ideas

After walking the Philly Museum Show we came home with a pretty solid idea of the direction we're heading in. The good news: for the most part it boils down to a new paint job and some fun decorating. No major redesign. Bad news: Philly is one tough show to get into !! We talked to quite a few of the artists at the show, not just in clay either, and not many of them were selling too fast.

this is sort of a rough sketch in Photoshop of what we imagine our booth to look like once the shelves are painted a dark coffee bronze and the walls are draped in black drapery.

We had a great time wandering around Philly last night and this morning. Far more welcoming than say, NYC. Hopefully Boston will be similar. Haven't spent any time in Boston since 1993.

We had the most amazing dinner at this tiny restaurant called Lolita.
Nancy had a wicked salmon dinner that was to die for. My steak was anything but the usual fare. Mexican, Cuban, even some Indian influence. My dinner was served on fried yucca with a crispy plantain on top. The sauce was made from a combination of cream and smoky red peppers and probably some sundried tomatoes too. VERY savory. Our big surprise of the night was the green salsa which had some wonderful reference to Indian cuisine. LOADED with mint, and lime flavor, it was AWESOME! Desserts were a dense coconut cake with a chocolate pot de creme and for me, a pecan and chocolate bread pudding. All in all, WICKED!

Friday, November 9, 2007

What waits for us in PA

Nancy and I head to Philadelphia tomorrow to check out the Philly Museum Craft Show. One of the best shows in the country. We're really excited. After having seen last year that many of the artists participating in the Fine Craft Show at Memorial Art Gallery in Rochester were also doing the Philly Museum Show... we thought, hey, we should check that out. Many of the same artists also try to get in to the CraftBoston show as well as Smithsonian's Fine Craft Show.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Ideas for our next booth

So here we have the latest and coolest design from SmartFurniture. Damn that looks mighty fine. Just doesnt scream brown crunchy woodfired snot drizzled pots now does it?
Hey, sophisticated is okay too right?

I did some further reading about the materials they are using and was kind of disappointed. They are making these shelves out of melamine and MDF. I had sort of hoped for more of the baltic birch type construction I had seen with IKEA. Especially for the prices they are asking. Oh well.

Still looks very cool.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Planning for 2008

Tonight Nancy and I spent the better part of the evening discussing new booth design ideas. I've included a graphed out map of what we think we be the new design. We hemmed and hawed over some quasi-IKEA ideas. We'd been looking for booth ideas to inspire us for our upcoming show in Boston in March. Came across a website that makes shelving units for displays... Nice stuff.
This was the unit we liked the most.
So, after the long decisions of "do we buy it or build it" we decided to work with what we already have. Do some minor modifications and add some nice new touches. We're even going to switch the color of the display from cream to espresso mocha!! Should be cool! We still may end up working with some of the ideas from SmartFurniture... we shall see. Check out the rest of their website. Amazing stuff.

Friday, November 2, 2007

GREAT big slide show of most of what we make

Still playing around with this slide show idea. Lots of things to consider.
Suffice it to say, there are more ways to make a slide show than there are ways to take the darned pictures!


Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

Platter slide show - another attempt

Here we go, let's give this new slideshow an look-see.

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.


Some pictures of the latest Halloween dragon!
It's great being this age!!!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007


Happy Halloween. Seems that this year is just too warm for it to be this late in the season. Really messing with my brain! So much for resetting our circadian rhythms.

I was using some new software this week. Lightzone. Pretty interesting program. Doesnt quite replace Photoshop but it certain could be seen as a LOT easier learning curve.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Fall is falling

Yep, colors finally came and now seem to be on their way out. The past few days have been wicked rainy. Over an inch yesterday. We finally got some nice rich yellows and reds on the trees and then WHAM, rain and wind come and wash all the colors down the sink.

This week I have been working on trying to catch up on orders. Alas, it was too beautiful out today (and not nearly so WET!) so I had to spend some time taking pictures today.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

New Slide Show

Alright, here's a link to a new slide show we've been working on. Images of the platters mostly.
More to come as soon as we get some time. First, we need to make pots, SELL some pots and then we can play some more!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

New Platter pictures

I promised more pictures of platters as they start coming out of storage and finally see the light of day!! Well, this one was one I chose to take to Memorial Art Gallery. They are currently showing four of our platters on consignment. Hopefully between having the platters there and at Skyland we will finally start seeing more and more platters finding new homes! We also learned that we will be participating in a group ceramics show at the Johnson Museum at Cornell next year. Should be a real hoot to wade through all these platters to find the best ones for this show! DW is really hoping we can pull together some fun marketing for 2009. The goal being to have the platters at shows like the Philly Museum Show or the Smithsonian Show. We'll see how things go this spring when we are at CraftBoston.

Art Trail

This past weekend was the beginning of Art Trail.
For us, Art Trail is usually more about educating our local clientèle and also about hopefully helping people realize that we are here when it comes time to buy pots as gifts etc.

So... Friday came along and brought with it tons of drizzle. Along the day, people started filling the driveway. Over the course of the day we had six cars show up. That was odd. Last two months we hadnt had that many TOTAL. Hmmm.

Fast forward to Saturday... showtime! We weren't really feeling very excited. There were tons of things left to do, too many pots still to make for orders... and then WHAM, while we were trying to put some breakfast together for the family, the first car of the day shows up. The next time we got to look up for a break it was 2pm. Four hours had vanished. We had sold a fair number of pots and the day still had 3 hours to go!

Saturday ended with us having a total breaktime of less than half an hour for the entire day.
Sunday was a bit more normal. Heavy times, quiet times. In terms of sales, Sunday was about 1/3 what Saturday was.

So, now we're staring down the last two days of the week before the second weekend of Art Trail. We are low on quite a few of our forms. To remedy that we have a glaze load firing tonight. If all goes well, there will be a second glaze load going in as soon as this one cools. Means pots will be going onto the shelves warm on Sunday morning!!! Always fun.

Monday, October 8, 2007


It has been over two months now that the main road past our studio has been "closed" due to a detour that takes place over 9miles away. The reality is that the road is fine for 9 miles. Then there is a tiny detour. Instead the NYS-DOT has deemed it necessary to basically shut down all traffic on Route 96 past our studio/home. This has made for a very dry summer and early fall. No customers. This weekend marked the first customers we have seen in weeks!

The other deprivation of late, has been sleep. For longer than I care to admit, I have been sleeping poorly. This weekend it reached new peaks. Suffice to say, I need to find a solution.

To that end, today I have been pushing myself harder in the studio. Hoping that exhaustion will allow sleep to come more easily.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Moving platters into the limelight

We are getting ready for a big push. It is time to start marketing these big platters. After so many years, I can look at them and be surprised again. Pretty wild feeling really. Today I was unpacking five from the shed. I came across these pictures, taken by our dear friends Dave and Jan Brown back when I was in grad school in Utah.

Sunday, September 30, 2007


Weekends pass like clouds racing before a storm. You look to see how remarkable, how beautiful and then they're gone.

The Finger Lakes of NY gets most of its charm from those perfect days of Fall when the air is crisp, the sun bright and the sky the most wicked shade of blue. This was one of those weekends. So much of it was spent outside, hoarding the sun, the wind, the coolness.... all in hopes that this memory would be enough to last till next Fall.

As a result, not a ton of pots were made this weekend. A great many were glazed and fired. Tomorrow morning early we'll see if we made coal or candy. Needs to be candy since nearly every pot in this firing is spoken for by either a patron or a gallery. Making a run to Rochester in the morning to deliver pots. I love visiting Rochester.

The vase in today's posting was shot this morning; strong sun streaming in the gallery windows. So much sun that even with all of our track lighting shadows just poured around pots. Pretty wild!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Friday's Deluge

We went to Lodi Point tonight as a wonderful rainstorm was coming in. Felt appropriate since today had been a pretty rough day for everyone and we needed a fresh start to the weekend.
Everyone had their camera in tow. We'd planned to be out there taking pictures for a couple hours, but quickly found that the incoming rain had different plans. First the sky went black, then the cold wind swept across the lake and not two minutes later we were racing back to the car to get the cameras out of the rain.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Wednesday comes with rain

We haven't seen much rain this fall. Not complaining mind you, but things are wicked dry. Tonight the thunder in the not too far off distance is comforting. Felt some sprinkles so far but no deluge. We need some major soaking.

In the studio today was a sweet day. I spent most of it making dinner plates for orders placed back in August and July. I love making plates...well, I love the throwing part. The trimming part seems to just take forever. If all goes well this winter we are hoping to make our new dinner plates like our salad plates...squared circles... so, there's something to look forward to in the spring. NEW dinner plate forms!!!

The studio shelves are full of serving bowls tonight. Had a nice evening throwing and faceting and just playing. Almost lost a few... just too damned thin. Those holes will have to be patched in the morning! The image above is from a small one I made about a year ago. Love the combination of the faceting and slip trailing. Top it off with a nice sweet glaze and good lighting. Wish I still had this bowl!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Pictures from the studio

Yesterday was one of those days where it is criminal to be inside for any length of time. Just a beautiful day. After getting more parts for the dining room bookcase primed, I took the afternoon and evening and used that time for throwing ice cream bowls. Anyone who knows our work, knows that we never have enough ice cream bowls to satisfy the demand. Hopefully, we'll be able to keep a few in stock everyday through the holidays. That's the plan anyway.

N thought it would be fun to take pictures of the potter at work. To that end, here are some pictures of yesterday's throwing.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Fall's a'comin' in

With our first morning full of frost, it finally feels like Fall is here. A and I spent yesterday morning hiking and photograph- ing our way up Watkins Glen. Fall color is just beginning but the chill in the air was wonderful! Here are a few pictures from our walk.

Friday, September 14, 2007


Just a few versions of an interesting scene up in the high fields above Seneca Lake. I cant wait for the REAL Fall to get here for the foliage change and the crisp air. Love shooting pictures in that sort of weather!