Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Tin Fish

I found these 4 chippy, rusty tin ceiling tiles at a local hipster antique flea-market thing called "Stash Style" (which was actually pretty amazing, check out their upcoming events here).

I stared at them for about a month or so before I had an epiphany at a local hibachi restaurant. Koi fish! Of course! No, while not exactly a northern Ohio species, they are a common backyard pond fish, so I think they fit the show.

Each tile got a coat of sage green pickle paint, which helps seal it from the oils.

Here is the first painted fish. I think that these will have coats of wax and maybe collage before they are 100% finished though.

 Jade bead is from the fantastic "bead paradise" store in Oberlin, OH. It will be sewn on the finished piece.

13 inch birdbath in progress

Here's a little one... First try.

Thursday, May 26, 2011


The bird plates came out pretty good...
Here's the chipping sparrow

and the goldfinch

and the vireo

and the house finch.

"Frog and Toad" is my favorite, I think.

Here's the back.

I also glazed the porcelain test cups. I'm disappointed that the clay color isn't particularly white, but the unglazed bottoms feel nicer than stoneware.

I painted teeny fish inside all of them.

I love the forest green glaze, but it has a tendency to craze. (On stoneware too. Not just porcelain.) Can you see the hairline cracks in the glaze surface? There's a big "U" shaped one in the middle. The cracks would indicate that the glaze doesn't quite "fit" the clay body. What a shame... it's such a fabulous bottle glass green color.

Chun Red is also an iffy glaze, but with great potential. Where it's thin, it's a pale pistachio color. Where it's thickish, it's bright red, and where it's very thick, it's darker green. Trouble is, when the glaze is so thick it has a tendency to run. Look at how blobby it got around the foot of this test cup. I'm glad the glaze didn't run onto the kiln shelf!

So what color glaze will I use on the porcelain pieces? I'm still thinking... Probably the light green... Maybe the robin's egg blue... Maybe even Chun Red.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Frog and Toad are friends

Can you find the stinkbug?
Almost done... I just have to glaze it.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


This fellow is a red eyed vireo. I've only seen one (he must have been migrating). He was light tan with an iridescent olive green sheen. Quite lovely, but he took forever to identify.

Here's a house finch, looking for a good nesting spot. (Someone's front door, maybe?) I'll glaze these plates tomorrow (along with the sparrow and goldfinch plates).

This week I threw the last of the porcelain. Which means only one thing:

It's time to recycle!! This slop is great... smooth as cake batter. I'm hoping to squeeze four more plates out of it.

Here's my second tile for the 8 inch by 8 inch BayArts fundraising show. I'm excited to try something like this on a larger scale with bird baths.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Friday, May 13, 2011

Hey lady, get off my lawn!

I took a stroll to look at flowering weeds in people's yards on Tuesday... Unfortunately, many of the best lawns had been recently mowed. But I did have good luck at Bain Park.

Hello, Ant! Or, I wish I had a macro lens.

So many different types of pretty flowers... It's a shame they're considered weeds. I'm excited to paint them on some plates!

The brown dotted ware is still alive and well. This tea set is in the kiln this very minute. I'll post a photo of the finished work tomorrow.

Here's a recently thrown tureen and ladle. They'll be part of the dotted set.

Turtles! I just learned from the Google that a group of turtles is called a "bale of turtles."

BayArts is having a fundraiser for its education programs on July 1st, where 500 8 inch by 8 inch pieces will be displayed for sale. I'm going to make some sculptural tiles. Here's the first one... They'll be good practice for my ambitious birdbath project!

Monday, May 9, 2011


I'm working on more box turtles. I'd like to give them better feet, and maybe some height. Right now, their bellies rest on the tabletop.

My friend Joan is making turtles too! This guy is tiny: much smaller than the palm of your hand. I'm assuming he's a male: male box turtles generally have red irises. She achieved a nice tortoise-shell effect on the lid... I hope she'll share her secret. Joan has been an influence in my work, and I feel honored that I could inspire her just a little bit in return.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Tools of the trade

What better way to dream of small good things than to take a trip to the metropark with my new bike and my camera. They are my favorite researching tools! Today is a wonderful day for it too, not a cloud in the sky. Ahh...Perfect

Monday, May 2, 2011

Viva la Mexico!

You're invited to
The BAYarts Ceramic Studio's student show "Viva la Mexico"
Opening Reception: Friday, May 13, 7-9p.m.
28795 Lake Road, Bay Village

Come for the art, stay for the food (or vice-versa)!
Fifteen ceramic artists are showing work this year, all inspired by the art and culture of Mexico. Here's a sneak preview:

Erin's great and glorious "Frida Platter"

Joan made this sweet Frida bird feeder

Decorative table ware by Joe

Diane made a whole series of pots, bowls, and cups,
all with different designs using red, ochre, and turquoise underglazes.

Denise made these fun fish plates.
She's working on larger platters and plates too

Sue P.'s Sun. Several of us decided to make suns...
We thought they'd make a striking display on the back wall of the gallery.

This one's mine (Sue K.)

And here's one of my bowls.

We also all made rustic pinch bowls. Joan gave hers a "Day of the Dead" flair.

We'll have stacks of these pinch bowls for people to eat their food
at the opening. For a small donation, they can keep it.

These are Leah's thrown pots with metallic black interiors
and interesting crackle exteriors.

Joan's "Ladies"

Sue P.'s Platter

Jessica's "Dancing Ladies"

Alison's plate. She's making nice large colanders, too!

Julie's double-dipper bowl

Erin's bird plates, PLUS the lid to the awesome collaborative jar!

I threw the jar, Joan made the sculptural lid (with ibis and iguanas), and Erin painted the decoration (inspired by Mexican embroidery designs).

The interior is royal blue, and there will be royal blue bands
at the top and bottom (around the fish).
It's in the glaze kiln this week...