Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Leaning towards the abstract

I have some clay that is too stiff to throw on the wheel so my choices are to use it for hand building or let it dry out and totally reconstitute it. The latter is a lot more work. So I rolled out some nice slabs, added texture and draped them.
They are abstract bowl forms.

We had the opportunity to go to the Saturday Farmers Market. I LOVE this market. We spent way too much money on goat's cheese that we have been enjoying daily since. Bought some fresh eggs, habanero salsa and homemade fudge. It's easy to fall in love. This year this market has six potters. Each and every one of them producing exquisite work. For a split second I felt a little bad about my own work but thankfully that feeling was short-lived. If anything I let them inspire me to work harder.
I was especially impressed with the glazes these potter are using. Very bright and colorful. In general potters will produce tons of work and glaze their pieces in a drab two-color dip. I have never been one of those potters. I love color and visual interest and I spend a lot of time on each piece I make. I very seldom dip or pour. I always thought this made my work stand out from other potters. But color and decoration was all over the place; these guys...these guys are good!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

One idea leads to another

I've really been sidetracked by this project. I have so many other projects lined up that this one really isn't the priority but I am having so much fun I just can't help myself. These are the 36 tree themed designs that I have settled on. I am also working on tatted lace designs. I keep getting ideas for even more designs and more applications so who know where this tangent will take me? I find it fascinating how my creative mind works....yes it is a mystery even unto myself. Sometimes I get frustrated with myself for being "all over the map" with my ideas and I feel that it makes me counter productive. But oddly, when all is said and done, nothing that I do is ever a waste of time. All things have a way of magically intertwining to bear a delicious fruit in the end.

Thursday, April 21, 2011


The first "batch" came out of the kiln this morning and I am very pleased with the results. I started out with the idea to make JUST ceramic buttons but as I was punching the button holes I thought, "Why not medallions for jewelry"? I used to make all kinds of really cool one of a kind medallions for necklaces so this was a natural progression. So the options are not just limited to buttons.

I will be listing some of these in my Etsy shop today and the rest I will take down to "Indie Made".
I have a total of 36 tree designs that I settled on so you will be seeing a lot more of these.
What can I say? I LOVE trees!
....oh oh and oh, I am also making these with tatted lace designs...so stay tuned tatting friends!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Ceramic buttons

I spent several days designing buttons with various trees on them. I designed over 40. I chose 6 designs to run my first test as you can see here. I then made a stamp-mold.

Rolled out a nice slab of clay and smoothed all the marks out.

Then I started stamping away.

This is actually the second attempt. My first set of buttons I cut out by hand and they were pretty rough. So for round 2 I fabricated a cookie cutter out of a film canister. I cut off the bottom of the film canister, cut out the button and then used a sponge to push the button out of the canister.
I hand punched all the button holes but I think I would like to fabricate a button hole puncher so that the holes are uniform. These still need to be smoothed out by sanding and then fired and glazed.
Not all of them will be buttons, some will be necklace medallions, some will be for bracelets and earrings.
These will measure approx 1" in diameter and approx 1/8" thick when they are finished.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Spring Cleaning

I was all gung-ho to get to work in the studio today. I have about eleven ideas running through my mind for what I want to produce. So I got in there and rolled out a big slab of clay, put some texture on it and draped it over a bowl. Then I just stood there and didn't know what to do next. Every time I tried to start something I couldn't find all the tools I needed. Then I realized what a deed'n mess everything was so I started cleaning, but haphazardly so.
I vacuumed part of the floor then got distracted by some disorganized shelves which then reminded me that I need to bring all my glaze chemicals up from the basement and so forth. So basically I need a good Spring clean but am I out there doing that? No, instead I am writing this post and telling myself that I will come up with a plan of attack tonight and "bust my rump" tomorrow....
In the meantime I got distracted by another project I had started but didn't have the right tool to finish until today...
Remember the tag I was working on for Indie Made? Well, I am proud to present this final draft which will be placed on the higher priced pieces....for that extra little magical touch.

The tool I was missing was an eyelet punch so now that I own one here are my cloth tags. I think they are pretty cool! I built upon this idea from PatchworkPottery. She has an excellent fabric labels tutorial.
Well...I must be off to waste some more time! Mwa ha ha!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

....and now it is "Wait and See".

While I was only at the Grand Opening the first hour or so there appeared to be a wonderful turn-out. There were so many people in the store that it was hard to move around. I met a few of the other artists and they were all very nice and seemed very happy to have a potter join the group. Yep...I am the only potter! There is a nice variety of different kinds of art and hand made items available in the store, it is definitely a place I would shop. Great Idaho made products at a great price!
So now I will sit back for a time and hope that I make some sales. My pieces are certainly priced to sell and I hope buyers know that they are getting a smashing good deal!
I have some garden markers I will bring in next week since Spring is practically here. I am excited to see what kind of pieces I will produce over the next several weeks.