brucine (broo'-seen), 1) n. Pharm., Chem. a bitter, poisonous alkaloid, C23H26N2O4, obtained from the nux vomica tree; 2) n. Bruce Bortin's 'low-impact' weblog

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Guest Artist Corner #1

Friday, December 04, 2015

My client drew a picture of me

...then I took a selfie.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Paperclay Rectangular Vase

ex coll c mosbrucker

Char Box

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Paper Clay / Text

Monday, October 26, 2015

Eucalyptus Bark Texture

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Friday, June 05, 2015

Bruce & Bruce

Bortin & Bursten
Good lord did we talk.
Congrats on the Provost position at Wooster Polytechnic Institute, Bruce. Good on yer!

Photo by Bruce B

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Tentacular Offering

Saturday, May 09, 2015


Pieced Blue Porcelain Dish for Ramona Foran

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Acorn Squash Bowl for Richard Hurlburt

Mortar and Pestle for Cathy Mosbrucker

Lentils 'n' Such

Slipcast Porcelain Acorn Squash Bowl

Portrait of the Artist as a Grizzled Old Fart, Redux


Tip of the hat to the memory of David Ireland

Ceramics: Bark Texture


Saturday, March 21, 2015

Crochet Hat Pot #2

Detail. Where it all went wrong.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Learning Curve

Collaboration with Fred

This is a collaboration between my cat Fred & me. Distressed leather, a sanding disk & ink on 11 x 16" Bristol Board. Fred did the distressing on the leather. It's a patch that I placed on my comfy chair at home. 

Fred likes to sharpen his claws  on the right arm upright of the chair, so eventually, it started looking like hell, I glued a piece of leather to cover it up. When that patch started looking like hell, I peeled it off and replaced it with another one. I glued the feline-modified leather to the paper above, did some other art-like activities, and voila, interspecies collage!

I brought the collage to ceramics, ran it through the slab-roller, bisque fired it.
White underglaze border, Black Iron Oxide where the leather was, Copper red glaze on the disk.

The cone 10 reduction-fired piece is a certain but as yet undetermined percentage smaller than the page it was made from because of shrinkage during drying & firing.  I like it. Fred is indifferent to the design, but enjoys scent-marking the corners with his face.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Asparagus and Rubberbands


Kind of a clunker. I think I'll slake this one down, refine my technique and try again next Monday.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Small bottle

From larger acorn squash mold, with added coils and a slab lip. Bermuda green slip decoration, scrafitto'd.

Displaying 2015-03-16 18.44.59.jpg

Glazed with Douglas Celadon on the rim, 2 layers of Matte Turquoise on the body.


Saturday, March 07, 2015

Saturday, February 14, 2015


Mechanical pencil on post-it. I can't remember what I was working out with this sketch. I like the line quality though.

Sunday, February 08, 2015

Collaboration w Fred

...using a graphic that I made using a piece of leather that the cat has shredded.

Artichoke or Pangolin

Handbuilt out of clay patties. Pattycake patties. I made this piece at the student Union craft shop in . Madison my first semester there when I didn't know what to do with myself. It was a nice piece. I'm thinking I should recreate it. Maybe I will

Here it is bisqued and given an iron oxide strain before going into the high fire. Sorry about the fucked up layout on this post. I can't get the blogger software to do what I want, and I'm too frustrated and lazy to go into the html. Sheesh.

Cantaloupe Slip Cast Molds

Because why the hell not?

Conical Paper Cup Holder

Ward 93 has a watercooler that dispenses Solo paper cups, the conical ones? 
That you can't put down? I've never seen one of those stupid brown plastic holders that were supposed to pair up with these cups anywhere around the ward. 
Sometimes I like to have a drink of water at my desk. I'm working on a design for a ceramic holder for a cone full of water. Here's how it's been going..

Monday, January 26, 2015

Ceramics Toolkit

Waiting on loop tools until I can get some advice.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015


Sunday, January 18, 2015

King BoxBoy

Packaging for new alarm clock. Nbd.

Fred regards the new DVD player

Our old DVD player either died or developed a strong strain of homophobia, wouldn't play either "I Am Devine" or "Pee Wee's Playhouse" season one disc one. So I went out to Best Buy to get a new one, but they don't open until 11 on Sundays. So I went to Target instead, got the cheapest thing I could find there. This one's pink and it seemed very happy to boot up PeeWee.

I think Fred approves. Someday he will solve the mystery of the tray that slides out of the slot.

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

Busy day

Errands before returning to work Tuesday.

Saturday, January 03, 2015

TV Storyboard Layout Pad

Storybook Layout Pad Cover
This is a pad that I had in 1987. It just turned up while doing a big study clean. I scanned it and parked it here. That was a pretty busy little mind at work there. Enjoy.

For instance, these two sketches…

Storyboard Layout Pad 22

 Storyboard Layout Pad 21

eventually became this piece:

Slumped, fused polished antique yellow glass with black copper oxide veils between the layers 01

20150103_134236 copy

Slumped, fused polished antique yellow glass with black copper oxide veils between the layers

Happy New Year

Goodbye Xmas Tree

Goodbye Xmas tree


Goodbye Amiga monitor

Goodbye, old Amiga monitor. We had some good times, and I’ll miss you.

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