Pat Gavin is a potter living in West Point, MS. "I have been producing high-fired stoneware and raku ware for forty years. My stoneware is produced using all natural materials of the highest quality. No lead is used in any process of my pottery. After the pot has been made, it's placed inside a kiln (furnace) and heated to eighteen hundred degrees. The bisque pot is then cooled and the glaze is applied. It is then put into a different kiln and fired to twenty three hundred degrees. This glazing fire process takes twelve to fifteen hours to reach temperature and then the kiln must cool for thirty-six hours before the ware can be removed. My stoneware is oven, dishwasher and microwave safe and is made to be used and enjoyed daily. I also produce a line of Raku ware. Raku is a process that was developed in Japan hundreds of years ago. The use of this process was introduced in the United States in the 1960's. The pot is placed in the kiln and removed when the temperature reaches eighteen hundred degrees. It is then placed in a mass of combustible materials, such as sawdust or leaves, in order to provide a reducing atmosphere for the glaze and to stain the exposed body surface with carbon. Raku ware is extremely porous and should not be used for food of any kind."