Sneak Peek

Think I’ve haven’t got some new wares to introduce this holiday season? Think again!

Yes, I’ve got my plate over-full many areas this time ’round, but I have been finding a little time to sneak into the studio. Luckily, some things are just coming out in time to feed the shopping rush! Look out this week for some brand-spankin’-new beer steins over in my Etsy shop, like the sexy red mug, above.

I think around the holidays, many women face the question: What the heck kind of handmade gift can you really buy a man? Problem solved!

 

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Published in: on November 25, 2009 at 12:40 am  Comments (1)  

Introvert

Ever heard of a shy tomato?  Maybe it’s just a tomato waiting for it’s moment in sun (or the sauce, as it may be).

Sort of like me right now…Looking around through the lens of my camera, enveloped in my own little world…

 

Published in: on November 16, 2009 at 8:07 pm  Comments (1)  

A different view

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Doing my photography homework makes for some strange experiences! Last week I went wandering through one of Philadelphia’s major tourist sites with a big camera strapped around me. But while most the folks there were taking pictures in front of the Betsy Ross House, or posing with a poorly paid actor in revolutionary get-up, I was twisting myself into a pretzel to get nice shots of wood fencing or drain pipes.

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Published in: on October 7, 2009 at 10:32 pm  Comments (6)  

It all comes together

I hope everyone had a fabulous holiday weekend – I know I did! We kicked it off Friday with D.’s art opening, which was awesome. Besides spending all summer making the pieces, it took him over 10 hours just to install the birds. And almost all of that was on a ladder with his arms above his head! But I think it was well worth it. Tons of people stopped by to check out his work, gape and ask lots of questions. Almost everyone who saw it thought it was beautiful, especially at night when the lights reflected hundreds of swirling birds on the walls around the space.

The weather was perfect and the crowds were huge. And on top of all that, he got a write-up on the Philadelphia CityPaper blog (our biggest local arts and entertainment paper) and his university is contacting him today to write a news story for their paper. (Publicity was my contribution – I made the postcards, laminated signs, took photos and sent out half a dozen press releases!)

It took me quite a bit of experimenting to figure out how to take some nighttime photos of the installation, but I think I got some decent shots. You can check out the entire album on flickr, but here’s some highlights:

The full installation!

The full installation!

Visitors take a look

Visitors take a look

A different view

A different view

D. talks to the public about his work

D. talks to the public about his work

Night birds

Night birds

Published in: on September 9, 2009 at 7:11 am  Comments (6)  

The Installation Goes Up!

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While I slave in front of the computer screen this week, D. is out on a ladder, making sure that his show looks perfect in time for the big opening day this Friday.

He spent several consecutive days hanging his porcelain birds and they look fabulous! So many people stopped to check them out, stare and ask him questions. I can’t wait until we have the lights up and it’s nighttime, and people can walk in and under the entire sculpture! Also at night you can’t see the microfiliment (fishing line) that they hang on – it just looks like a flock of amazing birds taking off from the center of the park.

The head of our gallery also encouraged him to install the project again in the spring for a major ceramics conference that is coming to Philadelphia  – a huge compliment for his first public work!

These photos are from the first day, so you can’t get a sense for the entire finished design. But I think you can see where he’s going with it, and how realistic and lively these pieces look as they’re hung. Watch out for more pics of the finished work later this week!!

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Published in: on September 1, 2009 at 7:14 am  Comments (4)  

Exciting Build-up

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Thanks for all the great comments on my glaze tests! I’m glad everyone likes the 3% rutile glaze. Now it’s time to whip up a big batch, plus test a couple other glazes that will complement it on the insides of bowls and cups.

In the meantime, I’m watching with excitement as D. prepares for his first big exhibition. He is just in the process of installing a major ceramic installation in a small city park. Hundreds of white porcelain birds will be spiraling down out of the sky, suspended from trees, into the center of the space, where earthy ceramic blooms will be growing out of the ground. The title of the exhibit is “Emergence,” and the official opening will be Friday, Sept. 4 (although he is racing to get most of it up and ready this week). You can see a couple of the birds he made in these pictures my photographer friend took.

I hope to have lots more photos as it is going up and the finished show! If anyone is in Philly that weekend, please let me know, we’re going to be having a party to celebrate, for sure!

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Published in: on August 26, 2009 at 7:46 am  Comments (4)  

Something new afoot

Remember this bowl? You may not, because I made it all the way back in June 2008. But it’s a favorite of mine, and when I was pondering some new design ideas, it immediately popped into my head. I love the way the soft, earthy brown texture contrasts against the tropical glossy center.

The problem is, these glazes were fired in a special kiln, where compounds of salt and soda are sprayed inside during the hottest point in the process. I did it at a special workshop, but our normal kiln is not equipped for it (or rather, if we did it once, the chemicals would permenantly contaminate every future firing. So you need a kiln dedicated entirely to salt or soda).

So what to do? I consulted my studio’s glazing guru, an old hand with years of pottery experience. With her help, I came up with half a dozen possible glaze recipes. She also suggested spraying the pieces with a water/table salt solution to mimic the type of firing I like.

I finally had a chance to mix up all the glaze tests I need, and I should be able to see the finished products Friday afternoon. I’m super excited, because if I like the results I may be able to serve up a whole new line of work just in time for the holidays…

Published in: on August 20, 2009 at 11:35 pm  Comments (3)  

Starry Starry Night…

Ooo, the new work just doesn’t stop around here!

Here’s a new riff on my little dip bowl sets  –  a set of five, joined into a star! This was a real pain in the a$& to make, so you can bet you’ll only being seeing one. It was inspired by my popular photo for the original little dip bowls, which I had arranged in a star formation. I think this would make a really fun earring organizer for the top of a dresser.

Hmmm, you know what else just occurred to me? A really hot jewelry craft show arrangement using different formations of these little bowls. Plus a porcelain necklace tree? Maybe I gotta get together with a jewelry artist in the Philly area and make that happen….

Published in: on July 11, 2009 at 11:06 pm  Comments (4)  

Party Time

party nights

I’m exhausted today! Probably because D.’s apartment building threw a big party and I was up a wee bit too late Saturday night…

Here’s another little party-inspired collage made with my new InDesign skills and the help of some super talented Etsians (the actual party I went to was more of the flip-flops and playing badminton variety, but I was in the mood to fool with some sexy black, white and pinks tonight!).

Here’s a couple of fabulous party picks:

A handmade bra by Hopeless, inspired by Audrey Hepburn. Ooo la la!

Sexy heels with hand-painted embelishments by Crafttastrophe.

An eye-catching white and pink flower brick by Elegantware.

Published in: on May 17, 2009 at 10:29 pm  Comments (2)  

Feelin’ blue

The only nice thing about going back to work on a Monday after a three-day weekend was coming home late and finding a beautiful pair of earrings, handcrafted by Lorelei, waiting in my mailbox!

They were her part of a trade for some beads, and I think I entirely got the benefit of the deal! They are deliciously long and dangly and feature lampwork glass beads in exactly the colors of Botswana’s flag (unintentional on her part, I’m sure, but it gave me a tickle since I studied there during school).

But the best part is the little tinkle sound the brass wires make when I turn my head – sure to provide hours of entertainment in addition to style!

Published in: on May 11, 2009 at 11:02 pm  Comments (3)