Saturday, May 22, 2010

Spring Projects

I'm looking forward to starting a glaze firing tomorrow morning! I have several projects to finish up which feel long overdue. Maybe it's because I recently took time off to visit my parents and enjoy their humid spring and neon green flora, but suddenly I feel like I've been producing and producing, without wrapping anything up!

Here are some of the fun items I'll fire tomorrow.....

First, there are large mugs for sipping tea that will go to the Backcountry Herbal Apothecary in Frisco. I added the company's logo image sans text. I just mixed up the glaze, and if all goes well, it'll end up sage green with brown accents.

The casserole dish is a custom piece for a designer and friend from my days working with blinds and draperies (hence the drapery tassel "handle"). I let it dry sloooooowly, over three weeks, just to be safe. I'm really excited to see the results: the red-looking glaze will turn blue, and the tassel will be more wine-colored with blue accents.

I put the plates on the back burner because they're "just" for my husband, and I've had more pressing priorities. Also, our outdoor pet (Linden the fox) somehow got into the garage and jumped on two of the five plates, breaking the rims. Bad pet! I threw a replacement plate a few weeks later, and I think it fits with the style of the others. They will all be the same deep brown and blue color scheme as the tumblers and salad plates I put on Etsy recently. In the middle of the plates I pressed to make shallow swirls, and that part will be the blue.

At long last, I'm moving forward with my "Poppy Reiki" vase. I was inspired by a dear friend who is a Reiki Master. She says that she came upon a poppy bud one day and performed Reiki on it for fun, and.......yes, you guessed it, the bud opened into a flower! I love this story, even if it is improbable, and made the vase very narrow (depth-wise) so that it would seem like a book to shelve, thus documenting the sweet story in the banks of my life's experience. I constructed this vase in 2009 and only today applied underglaze to the incised drawing. After I fire it to cone 6 and vitrify the clay, I'll apply a low-fire liner glaze on the inside and rim and fire it again.

For my show in July I've started making masks to hang on the walls. I think the colorful effects on my masks that I'll get from a pit fire will complement the black and white photography that will be hung as well. Who knows what pieces I'll make for the pedestals, but I'll think of that when the masks are done. I just finished teaching pit firing classes for the Arts District of Breckenridge, and of course I had my students make masks as well. I love sharing inspiration with a group of clay folks and feeling the positive, creative energy we generate together!

In the spirit of Spring, I've had plants and new growth on my mind. I don't know what I set out to do here, but I just finished a planter with an eye, nose, mouth, ear, and open hands. I can't wait to fire it and decide which plants I want to emerge from the openings! It's about 17" tall and 15" wide. Clockwise from the front are stylized hands, an ear, a mouth (just looks like a slit from this angle, but those are actually the bottom teeth), an eye, and a nose. The holes scattered like seeds at the bottom are for drainage. Everything opens upward except the nose, which I can imagine a vine or spider plant shoot crawling out of...

On to the next project!