Author: Tammy Jo Schoppet Artist- Potter

I’m 50 TODAY! – Things you don’t know about me, the Hobby Potter!

TODAY IS MY 50th BIRTHDAY! Supplemental stuff! Since I won’t have the opportunity to “party with you all” and chat one on one in person, I thought it would be fun to share some “chat style” info about myself that you may not know and could find interesting!

My birthday is also my new year, generally major inspirations or events happen on my birthday so I’ve committed to setting my future goals on this day and laying the ground work for the following year to take the challenge of completing them…I’ll share what I’ve got so far today 😀

Thanks for watching and thanks for coming to my online birthday party!

~ Tammy Jo 😀

Surprised…This all Happened In A Week – Update!

It has been one busy week!

I didn’t realize it until I decided to create a video…so here’s how it happened….

1. 3rd Thursday Art Walk – Throwing Demo

2. Wood Colony Faire (a tour of the studio),

3. Stanislaus Magazine Photoshoot (Thank you James Ewing, enjoyed chatting with you and thank you for your patience with me … lol!)

4. Purchase a “Lil’ Duncan” Test Kiln

5. Got Inspired: Visited a unique art gallery “Gatos Loco’s” and met some wonderful artists.

6. Investing in “Thankful Reflections” because I’m writing the book of my journey with “365 Day’s of Clay Cups” since it will be 5 years ago that I started the project.

7. and yes…I even cut off 8″ of my hair

MY NEW YEAR! The beginning of my year has always been my birthday! I don’t know why…but it just feels more accurate to set goals on one’s that’s my “New Year”. It also seems that a persons birthday should be the day you GIVE other’s gifts,  rather than GET gifts. Think about it… we were thought of as presents to our parents on the day we were born (hey…I’ll stop there LOL)!

So with this mindset, I  generally set off about 2 weeks before my birthday to visualize my future (which would be now…since November 9th is the big day)! I make my plans and set my goals for the coming year! WHAT WILL MY CLAY PLAY LOOK LIKE IN 2016…those types of thoughts start about now!

This year is a little bit more special…1/2 a CENTURY ….I’LL BE 50 YEARS OLD! As I thoughtfully reflect, I also consider it an exciting adventure in a different season of life!

To be honest…I know I’ll never grow up (sorry my children…but don’t older people revert back to childhood as they grow old…eventually my mental age will again meet!), Now I feel like I’m more open and receptive than I’ve ever been to learning new things!

So, I’m looking forward to this future, I will find more joy and keep it fun & exciting …the way I’ve always wanted to live my life!

The big question….Hmmm…I what should I give as gifts on my birthday this year!!!??

How Does an Artist Find Inspiration – Fine Artist Nicole Slater – Bio and Art

This week I’m dedicating a video to expressionistic fine
artist and teacher Nicole Slater, who I am honored to be showing with in our
gallery show “2GETHER” starting October 2015!
Artists inspire artists…I learned so much from my visit to
her studio and can’t wait to share her story…especially about how to find
inspiration and what to do when you draw a blank! Her advice can be applied to any
artist of any medium.
Here are some of the questions she will answer in this
          –  Where do you find creative inspiration for your
          –  How do you find inspiration when you don’t know
what to paint?
          –  Accountability Goal = Artist’s Dream Lifestyle!
          –  2 Different Styles in the show?
          –  How is this “2GETHER” Gallery Exhibition
Different That your Other Shows?
Thank you for watching!
Tammy Jo Schoppet 
2GETHER” Shows 2 artists in 2 different mediums working cohesively
ARTIST RECEPTION: October 10th 2015 when Nicole
and Tammy Jo will present!


Creating a Body of Work for a Gallery – Pulling it All Together! – Journal Entry 1

“I’m Excitedly Overwhelmed!” 

The Owners Of The Chartreuse Muse Art Gallery In Modesto, CA, (Sandra Veneman And Ellen Roehne), Invited Me To Do A Show Together With A Phenomenal Artist And Painter Nicole Slater. She Is A “Kindred Spirit” In Every Sense Of The Word , but plays art in a different medium!

Sandra, Nicole & I Sat Down Together To Eat And Chat At “The Artists Loft” … Nicole’s Haven   And Art studio All Trade shows All Trade Shows Trade shows All (Amazing Tour To Come!). We Wanted To Discuss Details The Of The Putting Together A Cohesive Show , Yet At the same time maintain our own individual freedoms of expression!
Such Interesting Talk Table! We Lunched And “Desserted” As We Tossed Around Ideas. We Discussed Color Combinations And Techniques. Again, So Insightful Talking With Other Artists. I Gleaned New Ideas And Put Them In My Pocket To Ponder On Later. 
I Went Into This Visit Fresh, With No Preconceived Ideas Of What I Was Going To Create. Since Nicole Had Already Completed Some Oil And Acrylic Paintings For The Show, I Was Able To See The Colors And Themes To Use As A Springboard For My Brainstorming . Cohesive … That Was My Goal!
Adjectives & Verbs
Learned a lot about myself and how I come up with ideas. I need a “word” a descriptive word! Once that word is in place … I’m ready to rock n roll !!!! My word (s) … Secret Garden! 
Video Shows Weeks This The Things I’ve Been Working On In The studio All … Some Throwing On The Wheel And Trimming Along With A Quick Tour Of My Handbuilding And More. After I Do The Tour A (Quite Lengthy) Tammy Jo’s Table Talk where I share a slide show and describe my feelings and process for coming up with pieces for our show … called … “2gether”! The 2 of us are doing this art thing 2gether! Meshing her paintings and my ceramic work for  an awesome cohesive experience!

To see the photos of some finished pieces and read back about my journey you may visit my Facebook fan page
Hobby Potter – Pottery Making and Ceramics

FINAL RESULTS – Cross-Mixing Commercial Glazes Pt 4/4

This is going to be a fairly long blog post as I wrap up this months glaze mixing test analysis!

Your diamonds are not in far distant mountains or in yonder seas; they are in your own backyard, if you but dig for them.”   Russell H. Conwell, Acres of Diamonds

WHY MIX COMMERCIAL GLAZES: This project began because I have far too many unused (some untouched) commercial glazes to warrant the extra expense of purchasing chemicals to mix my own. In order to deplete my supply for conscience sake, I needed to know what already have and test to them see if I have something even better. Did I have a diamonds in my own backyard?
                                     BEFORE FIRING                        AFTER FIRING CONE 5

ALTERING A WELL LAID PLAN: I had visions of getting all my glazes mixed…but the multitude of options was just too daunting. I eventually choose to mix certain glazes because I wanted to see the results.

Here were the general guidelines:
1.       Mix Only Cone 5 Glazes
2.       Mix Only Same Brands
3.       Depending on the colors here is how I chose to mix them:
a.       Amaco – Celebration
                                                               i.      TINT  – Mixed to create a Tint (added 50% white)
                                                             ii.      SHADE -*/Mixed to create a Shade (added 50% black)
b.      Amaco – Potter’s Choice (still had more of these I wanted to test)
c.       Duncan – Renaissance Glazes
d.      Laguna – Morracan Sand Series (The black & white used to shade and tint only)
e.      Spectrum
f.        Speedball
Since I could have done more testing, and more testing…and MORE testing, I’ve decided to make it a standard part of my clay practice to mix and run test chips with every glaze firing.
I FOUND MY DIAMONDS!  I believe the washes tested on the back of each test tile gave me the most satisfaction. Since I work with washes these test were GOLD to me! Seeing all the different colors filling in the groove numbers was the biggest thrill. I realized how much.

This video shows each test tile and gives what colors were mixed with what and the completed sample chips! 

What are your thoughts, do you have a favorite? !!!

I could spend an entire lifetime mixing what I have…the possibilities were just endless! If I were to change the clay alone, all these colors could be completely different. Obviously I did not get to mixing all my glazes, (as there were just too many), but I believe I touched on exactly what I wanted to know about what I have. Here is a recap of the results and my thoughts.

Glazing Test Tiles! – Cross-Mixing Commercial Glazes Pt 3/4 –

 Finally at the glaze test tile stage! Once I started laying out the glazes I realized the task I set out on was bigger than expected.

The Big Delay?  
I didn’t figure in a key element of the process…RECONSTITUTING DRY GLAZE! The process to reconstitute my dry glazes took an EXTREMELY long time lol! It wasn’t as easy as opening a jar and mixing it up. It was add water, waiting, mixing, dumping in a larger container, blending with a hand mixer and pouring it back into the container. Then I needed to wash the container to do it all over again. A labor of love to be sure, but it did cause me to rethink my ultimate goal for each test tile.

I explain in the video how much I got done and how as the project progressed I fined tuned my goals to be more focused and specific! I’ll really be working hard to complete the glazing and firing by next week…if not I’ll extend it out because the ultimate goal is testing the glazes and not necessarily finishing in 4 weeks…even if it takes a little longer than expected, it will be worth it!

Thanks for watching and hope you enjoy and your suggestions and comments are greatly appreciated!!!

~ Tammy Jo

Test Tile Organized Game Plan – Cross-Mixing Commercial Glaze Colors!

Just jotting down some thoughts as I ponder the best way to organize and test my plethora of glazes.
Plethora = Over 100!

Obviously I have to have a baseline criteria and system or else the number of glaze samples would be into the 1000’s. So how should I go about choosing what I want to mix and what do I really want to know about what my colors can do together? One thing is necessary…


1. Everything will be fired to Cone 5 so only cone 5 glazes will be mixed together.

2. Same Brand: To simplify the process, I’m going to only mix glazes within the same brand family (except when adding tinting (white) and shading (black) glazes to the basic colors. These two colors may be another brand.

3. 1/4th ratios : Again for simplicity sake I thought I’d mix 50/50 – equal parts, but realized that mixing a heavily dominant color or extra runny glaze may need adjustments. I’ve decided on mixing in 1/4 portions dependent on the characteristics of each glaze.


1. BASIC COLORS (meaning commercial glazes as they come from the manufacturer).
      A. Sample stripe of the basic color in 1, 2 & 3 coats.
      B. Sample stripe of the basic color with Tint (white added) & Shade (black added)

2. MIXED BASIC COLORS (3 coats of color)
      A. Sample strip of each stand alone BASIC COLOR
      B. Sample strip of colors after they are mixed.
     A. Sample test tile of 1-2-3 coats.
     B. Sample of wash effect.

Just typing it out really helped me get a handle on the direction I need to go…now it’s trying to figure out the most time efficient way to get the job done!

Here we go folks! !!!