Sunday, November 27, 2011

Pretty exciting!

It's been 18 months since my orchid last bloomed... Do you see the light green shoot in the center of the rosette? It's a miracle!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Sacred Vessels: Sky vase

The vase is a little over 12 inches tall. Funny, it seemed much taller before I measured it.

It's to be part of the sacred vessel trio: water, earth, and sky.

It's a lantern... think of sunlight shining through bare branches.

Serving pieces

The finished feeder fish bowl and tureen. The inside of the tureen is pictured below.

I'm also painting the last of the covered bowls this week. The outside is above, and the inside is below. I'm rather fond of the large bluegill on the underside of the lid.

Sacred Vessels: water urn

In the beginning, I just wanted to make a piece that incorporated thrown, sculpted, and painted elements.

So there's a lonely person on the outside...

... and all sorts of fish will be painted on the inside.

I wanted to convey a sense of how separated we are from our origins, but that life still exists as it did in the earliest days.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Sacred Vessels: Earth Jar

So what happens after "Small Good Things?" Our May 11 group pottery show: "Sacred Vessels." I wanted to make a jar about things that grow and crawl. You'll see I included some familiar friends. Pottery is a process... ways of working build on each other and lead to the next idea.

Here is the jar in progress:

It's about 12 inches high, including the lid.

This long handle will become the snake.

And here are some more views of the jar. It needs to dry very slowly for the next few weeks.

On the inside, I wanted to suggest roots

This jar is actually part of a trio. Next time, I'll show you the water urn.

Sunday, November 20, 2011


Messengers • Oil on Canvas • 36 in x 24 in
Some paintings feel more important than others and I knew this one would be special the moment I took the reference photo of Laura. After weeks of work, I am immensely pleased to present it to you here. I love it more than I can say.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Taking a break from sage

The birdplate fronts don't look bad, although I'm not crazy about the redstarts on the lower left.

The backs are another story. That sage glaze is very touchy on white clay. The top two plates aren't bad, but the glazing on the bottom two is uneven.

Here's the worst one. Lucky for me, it happens to be the redstart plate with the "S" crack.

And I'm still plugging away on the fish lanterns.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Feeder fish bowl and tureen

Here's a large "Feeder Fish" bowl, ready for glazing.

Remember the "not at all bad tureen?" I finally painted it this week. Here's the outside...

...and a better view of the knob.

Here's the inside

and the inside of the lid. I was trying to show the turtle and fish from below, but frankly I don't draw very well. I plan to glaze the outside of the bowl and the tureen with light green shino, usually a nice dependable glaze. I'm taking a break from sage... the backs of my bird plates don't look so great... You'll see why next time!

One for the recycling dish pan

I shouldn't have tried to rush it... The tail collapsed! Better luck next time.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

I wish I had more fish

Here are the latest finished fish lanterns. The one on the right was made with white clay. The "chun" glaze turned out much more red than it does on brown clay.

Hi turtles!

Some new dotted ware...

...with more on deck.

I decided to try something new when I glazed the small bird plates. Usually, I would put a couple of sticks across a pan, invert the plate on them, and pour glaze over the back. It works okay, but messes up the plate's rim.

This time, I tried setting the plates on top of a small plastic bowl and pouring the glaze over them.

It worked okay... Slightly better than using sticks. I'll probably do the same thing next time.

At the end of the day, I took some trash out to the dumpster... Someone already had dibs on it.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sunlit Creatures

Sunlit Creatures • Oil on Panel • 9 in x 12 in

I have become a superstitious person. I'm not sure when it happened, but I think I  have finally hit the painting sweet spot and am feeling pretty darn good about it. So.... right now, I think I need to wait to post things until they are finished. Irrational jinxing fear, I know, but with only a few months left, I'll do all I can to appease the painting gods. The good news is that I've been pumping out work continuously this month, so I'll have more things to put up soon. You just wait!

This painting was a pleasure once I got into it. I surprised myself by how much I enjoyed painting the natural elements. Usually, I am a figure girl and the background is not nearly as interesting to me as the main subject. I will often knock out the figures first and then labor over the background. This time, I worked on the "Laura" figure on the right, and then the background and then went back and forth between Cameron and the background until done. The last step was tweaking the figures. 

I am CRAZY about how the wooded background and creek bed turned out. What a joy to paint! It gives me a little thrill whenever I look at it. 

"Sunlit Creatures" was worked on while listening to "The Graveyard Book" by Neil Gaimen almost exclusively.

By the way, I did not do a good job photographing this little painting - it looks wayyy better in person. Come see it on February 10th in Bay Village, Ohio! 

Thursday, November 3, 2011

A better bird plate

I think my mistake was trying to paint "quality songbirds." This one's just house finch. In a weed patch. House sparrows are next...

I haven't yet decided if I'll scrap and re-do the first two plates (even the cracked one). Soon I will have to ruthlessly cull the painted ware.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Badly painted birds

Here's a pair of American Redstarts, painted rather badly. I would wash off the plate and start over, but guess what?

There's an "S" crack on the bottom. Stinker. Comes from lack of compression.

Here's a male scarlet tanager

and the plate back.