Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Nerve Grinding

Tree Hackers

The studio and house has been plagued with an awful sound. A grinding buzz of tree being sawed. The most wretched and nerve grinding sound I can think of next to a dentist's drill. My heart actually races with panic when I hear trees being cut. I have never liked it and hate it even more now that I am living in a city that seems pretty treeless as compared to my beloved PA woods.

NYC's "Million trees" campaign is apparently alive and strong. One million is a pretty large number. Lord only knows where they put A MILLION trees! It certainly wasn't on our block. They actually chopped our trees up so terrible they are ridiculous to look at. They hit the old oak down the block today and the pretty little cherry blossom.

The Pac Man Peg tree. Ridiculous!

Perhaps I'm just in a bad mood. I can see how clipping a tree in the city would be beneficial to the cars and telephone wires. There are, however, several areas in Brooklyn that never get the buzz saw. The telephone wires and cars do just fine. Actually, the cars and houses look much better with such pretty trees about. Oh, and wires are hidden. So aesthetically pleasing.

But again, I'm sure I'm just in a bad mood. After all, my mold for the China Buffet show isn't dry yet and my deadline on that is looming. My porcelain bowls took 12 hours to fire and look wonky and rough. And the cherry on top is that I have to re shoot this JAH cover of which I have no desire since my vision was Alborozo on the beach in all his glory.

They want more "story." Not sure how to give more story. I firmly believe that gorgeous Eberl mold on the beach, the waves crashing ever so slightly was the story. I firmly believe less is more in some instances. And in this instance collectors just want to see the horse. Put him in the ultimate fantasy setting every little gal dreams of (on the beach) and you have a bombshell cover. I mean, even *I* was clamoring to get a mold of him and when he arrived I totally had to go to the beach and play with him. (Yes, I still have to otherwise you will grow old!) Well, I got him, but he hasn't come without a price. Being grumpy has been the worst part of his price tag. >:(

Monday, April 28, 2008

Joyful Package

Your garbage is my treasure

Joy! My typesetting letters finally arrived today. Snagged them off eBay. Initially I was worried they would be cruddy 'cause you just never know what you might receive when you buy from new sellers. I was delighted to find that they are not only in excellent condition, but are the perfect size for my clay work. They are exactly what I was looking for.

I dropped everything once the package came and started making new pendants. First one made? One that says, "I love mom!" ....of course. Can't wait to show it off all shiny and glazed.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

A Great Weekend

Blue from the right side

What a great weekend! We all had a ball with April. We spent time at the beach, at the local park with my son, pastelled a pony or two on Friday night (Friday night pastel party anyone?) and we drank lots and lots of coffee and added a heaping amount of good talk to all of that which made for a great weekend. I'm always sad to see April leave and this time was even worse as I feel we had so much more to share and talk about. I love when good friends come to visit and now that my son is older, so does he. He asked where April was this morning and looked sad that she wasn't here to share breakfast with us.

Blue from the top

We took some great shots together and there is one I am dying to post, but for fear of embarrassing my friend I'll just send them off to her privately. They really turned out great and I'm going to send that one to the printer and hang it in my home. It just captured the three of us (me, April and Francesco) having a complete ball making the homemade pizza.

Blue from the left side

I got to bring the Fraley "Blue" drafter closer to finish while April was visiting. We worked on horses on Friday night. I've changed my painting techniques a bit and was happy to share these new ideas. I'm stuck with a dilemma now though. I'm madly in love with this drafter, but am afraid he has to go off to the auction block this week. Perhaps I'll name him "April Blues".

Thursday, April 24, 2008

282 at 72

Fun photo shoot

Two hundred plus photos on a 72 degree day at the beach with my son and best friend April. Could it get any better? Why yes! Add the new Alborozo in there and you have a pretty perfect day.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A Quick Peek

Coming to auction in about 2 weeks

Wanna take a peek at the latest piece I'm working on? Here is Lynn Fraley's beautiful drafter resin "Blue". I know...I know its another appaloosa. I just couldn't resist when I saw him in person. He just screamed, "appy" to me.

Well, tomorrow is going to be a really fun day. One of my best friends is coming in from upstate NY for a visit! I've been looking forward to her visit for weeks now and can't wait to just hang out and talk horse with her. She has confessed she is ready to play with clay and I'm sooo into that! So today I must get everything in the house and studio ready! That's one time I don't mind cleaning up...its when good friends come to visit. House work is oddly never a chore then. LOL

Enjoy your day everyone!
I'll pop on later tonight to announce the winner of the pendant giveaway!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Muddy Monday Madness!!!

My son and I had a ball of fun making some ceramic pendants over the weekend. I made the balls and he pressed the clay flat. Here are some of the fruits of our fun labor:

This pendant came out really cool, it almost looks like a Koi fish swimming in a lake under a red sunset. Will be for sale on my Etsy Shop soon.

Sunset red glaze

Sweet pea! The scrolls on this one were just so darling before the glaze and after the tearose glaze had a chance to pool in the crevices I loved this particular pendant even more. This one will also be for sale.

Tearose glaze

I call this one my "breezy" one. I can see oak leaves on the grass in this one and it reminds me of late summer when things are just about to change and you get that one little brave leaf that takes the dive into fall first. This one is the smallest pendant in the bunch and will also be offered for sale soon.

Green glaze

I ran out of stretch wire this weekend, but did manage to make quite a few pendants with the wire I did have. There are two additional ceramic necklaces that I decided to keep from this lot. I wore my bright "Sunset red" one out yesterday and got quite a few compliments on it. Here is the entire lot that will be offered soon on Etsy.

Full lot of pendants coming soon

I'm not too sure when I'll get all of the pendants loaded in my shop, but keep checking later on during the day today and tomorrow morning for updates. If you do miss the pieces don't fret. I do have more coming and will offer them once I buy more wire. Right now though I'm giving everyone a chance at this one below! YEP, a free giveaway!!!

I'm calling it my "Four Star" pendant cause my son and I had a four star weekend making these and this one will be given to one lucky blog commenter on Tuesday, April 22nd (about 11:30 PM est.) Just leave a comment and tell me one "four star" thing that happened to you this past weekend! (Please, keep it clean.)


Please note that only those who leave a comment here will be eligible for this drawing. All you have to do is leave a comment. One winner will be chosen out of all the people who comment. I will even handle the shipping costs and that includes shipping to Europe. Thank you.

Friday, April 18, 2008

24 Hours

My new ceramic pendant

Yesterday the sun was shining and the weather gorgeous. It was the perfect day...or so it seemed . Unfortunately, my son caught the 24 hour puke bug around 2AM and I couldn't think of anything but being with him to comfort him for the entire day. My poor little bub. Throwing up is the worst, I know. :(

Thankfully, he feels much better today and we have already gotten a good start enjoying the fine weather. I made a few new pendants in clay while he drew with chalk. He helped flatten a few clay balls out for me too. I love when he helps me make my clay art. I can't wait to teach him how to throw on the wheel one day.

Horsing Around Arab in progress

Once he fell asleep for the night yesterday I was able to work a bit on a commission. This Arabian stallion is slowly nearing finish and the owner has been most patient. I hope to have this big boy completed in another two weeks or so. His dapples are coming along so nicely. They are a pretty shape and are fading ever so softly into the background. Its exactly how I envisioned it.

Close up of the soft dappling

The best part about being an artist is the fact that I can make presents for people when their birthdays come around or when we are invited to a party. We have been invited to a christening and a Holy Communion party. Both affairs are quickly approaching and I am feeling very ambitious and am eager to make some boxes. Here you can see the very beginnings of a first tooth box (that is the oval shaped box) and a rosary holder box. Both will be for little girls so I'm excited to paint up more rose sprays with tons of pretty little dainty flowers.

Boxes right before firing

Well, the sun do two lingering items I never shipped yet. ARrr....I am rushing off to the studio to give both Jasmine (I'm so sorry she hasn't left yet Julie. She is coming though and I'll pop a pretty surprise in her box just for you.) and the Smittyn resin. I'm two days late in mailing Smittyn. Just couldn't make it to the post office. The only free day I had this week was Tuesday and you couldn't PAY me to go near our post office on THAT day!!!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Glazed Mud

Glazed but not fired

The weather has been simply delightful. I glazed up a few vessels and let them air dry in the warm spring air. This was the second batch of vessels I glazed. The first batch didn't receive enough glaze and each piece looks as if they were painted with mustard. The result was a very brown, dried up kind of color not worthy of a photo. So, I decided to really pile on the glaze with this batch. I'm happy to say that adding two more layers of glaze worked. The color shines through over this mocha colored clay. In some spots the clay even looks rather pretty peeking out from the glaze.

Color after glazing

Unfortunately, the mug I made for myself and glazed in shocking blue cracked during the glaze firing. I suspect I had placed this piece too close to the kiln wall. I really jammed quite a bit into the kiln this time. I even tried to fit the sake bottle in there and was disappointed I couldn't figure out how to get all these piece to fit. I'm now very glad I didn't squeeze that bottle in. Out of all the pieces I made from this batch I was most proud of the narrow necked piece.

Chipped mug

I'm slowly preparing my garden for another season of planting and our willow tree is almost in full bloom. Isn't it beautiful? This is where my son and I have been spending most of our time during the afternoons. The sun, green grass and dirt of my garden have been rejuvenating me for work on commissions this week. Yes, I finally put my foot down, pulled out the lingering pieces on commission and worked for several hours on a dappled grey Arabian resin. I am happy I put my foot down. I fear this pottery stuff is totally taking me over. I know I must sound like a broken record about how Im in love with my wheel, but its really true. I'm being romantically swept away at every step.

Spring in the backyard

Tuesday, April 15, 2008