Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Look Back

Today I was going to upload pictures of my new "studio" but Piers took his camera with him (the nerve!) so instead I have a couple thoughts to share about the gallery. We're closing next week - Saturday, May 2 will be a Closing Celebration with wine and snacks. After that, my brother-in-law (photographer Jesse Peterson) will be moving in for a few months, and I'm putting the house on the market.

Piers and I opened the gallery last July, and it's been really rewarding. I proved to myself I didn't need a lot of money to do it, but the work and time commitment were intense! I'm ready to welcome a change in pace. Don't forget I have a day job - although beginning next week, I'm going down to a four-day work week. More time for art, hooray!

One of the principal reasons for closing the gallery is that I want to focus on my own work. After going to Phoenix, AZ for NCECA a few weeks ago (clay conference), I started feeling much more positive about this major change. I have a lot of good ideas I want to work on! My studio space is a bedroom on the main floor of our house. It's near the kitchen, the laundry room, and far from our bedroom (upstairs), so I have easy access to food and clean clothes, without worrying about any clay dust where we sleep. Progress pictures will come soon.

Here I have photos of the first two pieces Piers and I made together - I pit fire handbuilt forms, and then Piers carves, stains, and attaches bristlecone pine pieces he finds near our house. These are shots of the pieces in the gallery (stairs and shelves built by Piers). I recommend clicking on the photos for a more detailed view. (The smaller piece on the right has beautiful texture. Can you see the rock the root trapped?)

Pitcher 24" tall; "Earthbound" 13" tall

All my artists were a joy to work with: Chaz della Porta, Jenn Cram, Holly Stein, Nate Zander, Cooper Walsh, Kerry Feldman, Lisa Rivard, Lisa Kohlhepp, and Rick Karden. I will enjoy visiting with them when I return their work after the closing, but it's bittersweet to move forward without their beautiful art around me.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Building a Vase

Here I am working on a larger piece. I finished it last week, and am drying it slowly.

Smoothing the inside:

Shaping the sides:

Making small adjustments to the sides:

Finishing the rim:

Fast forward............ 23 1/2" (max height my kiln allows).

Before shots

Here's some of the work I've done since January:
I finally bisqued this piece in March. It was such fun to build! For those of you who have never met him, this is Piers (with an Asian flair) in his fleece, pants, and boots. He's about 22" high.

I also have some pieces to pit fire:
These are all about 11" long. The one with roots is a wall piece. You can see that one of the roots sticks out (when the piece is on the wall, it will point downward, while the other roots point toward the wall).

After taking the pictures, I painted the pieces with terra sig and bisqued them at a low temperature (around cone 010).

Friday, April 17, 2009

Back in action

I think it snowed a foot and a half in Breckenridge today. I'm at home now, enjoying the warm fire beside a freshly-brushed dog and my sleepy husband. It's been quite a while since the last post, and a lot has changed since then. We're excited to share more regular updates - this weekend I'll post new pictures of recent work from us both.
In a nutshell: February 17th was my birthday - hooray! - then in March, Piers and I enjoyed a ski day in Vail with my uncle, and last weekend I was in Phoenix, AZ at the NCECA conference. (National Council of Education in the Ceramic Arts.) Day jobs aside, we've been artsying up a storm: Piers is nearly 3/4 done with his novel and built a small storage cabinet for my "clutter," and I've made pieces for upcoming pit and wood firings. Last Saturday I was in Lakewood with Sumi von Dassow for the first pit firing of the season. I saw some familiar faces, and am inspired to make more work for the next firing, May 9.