From ceramic vase by Bea Garth

“Petting the Cat,” by Bea Garth; will soon finally have a kiln I can use! and fire pieces like this as well as sculpture and wall plaques…

I have got some great news.

"Petting the Cat," ceramic vase by Bea Garth, copyright 2017
“Petting the Cat,” ceramic vase by Bea Garth, copyright 2017

Looks like I will be getting a used but good condition 818 P kiln on Sunday.

This means we finally can finally install a kiln here since it will use only half the electrical load of most other electric kilns. This is important since we simply don’t have a large enough electrical box to support having a large kiln unless we change to having a gas stove etc. Which at this point would be very expensive since we’d have to put in new piping into the kitchen and the laundry downstairs, plus of course get new appliances.

I still plan on converting my old larger electrical kiln to propane, but it will be nice to have a working electric kiln too. I had an 818 P years ago and loved it. Apparently I can make it taller too by stacking an extra row of soft brick . It won’t fire as hot that way, however it will be plenty hot enough since I plan to stick with low fire.

I am really jazzed about this since I love the freedom of working with clay–plus find it to be incredibly healing. Which is just what the doctor ordered so to speak given the fact I have had a lot of health challenges this last couple of years.

Here’s a piece on the right that I made last summer still waiting to get fired called “Petting the Cat.” So yes I am pretty excited at this wonderful find (i.e., re the lower voltage electric kiln)!

Still thinking we should build a small kiln shed outside the garage however to avoid fumes of course. But its very do-able given my background working on houses…


Bea Garth: Paintings & Ceramics at Clark County Open Studios Nov. 11-12, 2017

I will be participating in the Clark County Open Studios in Vancouver, Washington (just across the river from Portland, OR) this coming November 11th and 12th, 2017: here’s my page for the event featuring some of my art:

"The Fool,"  acrylic painting on paper by Bea Garth, copyright 2016
“The Fool,” acrylic painting on paper by Bea Garth, copyright 2016

You can find the general information of what Clark County Open Studios is about, the artists involved (including me) and an art map here:

This info. includes instructions on how to get to my Open Studio just across the county line in Vancouver, near Minnehaha and 68th–not far from I-5. My studio is on a slight rise with fairly good parking.

Besides painting on paper and canvas I will also be including some of my ceramics:

"Petting the Cat," ceramic vase by Bea Garth, copyright 2017
“Petting the Cat,” ceramic vase by Bea Garth, copyright 2017



“Petting The Cat,” ceramic vase in progress by Bea Garth

Of course I had to try making a large piece with this new low fire terra-cotta clay I got–plus have fun with all that white slip (looks blue green in the pix–will turn white in the fire).  I am really starting to enjoy this clay! And the slip. Will likely add some underglaze for more color when it gets a bit drier before it is fired.

Generally I have stuck to sculpture, since perfect regular forms and I don’t do well together. However I think maybe this is OK since this “vase” being hand-built, is obviously not meant to be perfect, even though in the end it will be able to hold flowers. It still is in its way sculptural.

So yes I am calling it “Petting The Cat,” since all the figures in this piece  are focused on this activity.

"Petting The Cat" vase in progress by Bea Garth, copyright 2017
“Petting The Cat” vase in progress by Bea Garth, copyright 2017

My plan is to go to Eugene next week and fire this and a couple more pieces I’ve made over at a good friend’s house. She has two kilns! She makes ceramic sculpture too. Likely we will have a blast.

If I really get going this weekend,  I will make a plaque too.

“TestVase,” scraffito on slab-built clay by Bea Garth

Am trying my hand using some new-for-me lowfire red clay. Its been quite a while since I have worked with clay. I finally have a studio that is big enough for it, plus I have been exercising more and getting stronger again. It feels so good to be getting back to myself again!!

"TestVase," white engobe on red low fire clay, by Bea Garth, copyright 2017
“TestVase,” white engobe on red low fire clay, by Bea Garth, copyright 2017

Fortunately this clay has grog already in it! My idea is to do scraffito with it. So I put white engobe onto the red clay, and carved through it. This is in the leather-hard stage. It has yet to dry enough to be fired. This is a test piece, small enough for my little test kiln. Will be setting up my big kilns likely sometime later this month or in early August.