Horse Hair Vessel

Fort Collins native Don Crego jokingly “blames” the late Blair Muhlestein for igniting his career as an artist.

Crego made the transition from real estate into art with encouragement from Muhlestein.

Crego was part of a show in Timnath titled “Turned, Thrown, Blown and Hammered” where he sold a pit-fired piece for $40 — and thought this was pretty cool — this Realtor then became an artist.

Crego’s style has evolved from large pieces to functional pottery. He make mugs with faces and says that this makes him happy.

Don says,

“Life for my art begins in a sack of wet earth

that I have the opportunity to transform into a work of art that may be shared with those who seek the original idea of my pottery.”

He has a signature style of pottery that he developed. On light-colored clay, these pots have irregular dark lines with a faint gray outline.

Before firing, the surfaces are burnished. After a firing, the dark lines are created using horsehair draped over the pot just as it comes out of the kiln. As the horsehair touches, it burns leaving dark lines. The smoke created adds a subtle gray outline. An ultraviolet coating is the final step in the process.