Sunday, November 21, 2010

Friday, November 19, 2010

Ta Dah! It's Magic!

Once again we gathered around the old little kiln.  Tired and spent, it offered its best and its worst.  A quick crossing of the fingers, anticipation rising, UP went the kiln lid.  Some would say it's magical, others might say it's electrical. I say it simply.

out loud:                  in my head:

ooooOoooooh          YES! Love it

oh????????                   not what I envisioned

OH!                           runny glaze---jar stuck to shelf

oh, oh, oh!                 that's a keeper

oh.......x#!*               lid stuck to jar--doorstop

oh? oh.                       maybe I will look at it later

oh? oh...oh!               stuck lid came off jar after it tapped against a stick wielding potter

ohhhhhhhhhhhhh        coffee break!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

They clean up real nice

This is like deja vu all over again-
                                   Yoga Berra

Finally I got some photos of the show.  Please excuse the brightness of some.  It was a beautiful day with sunlight streaming in-lighting up all the frosty glass and pale ceramic faces. I was in good company, my daughter-in-law, an artist herself, came along to see the exhibit.

Everything looks different in the light of gallery day.  The gallery is like a tuxedo and a fresh haircut for art that was living in a working studio.  It takes on an entirely different persona.

All glasswork and quilt are works by Cassandra Straubing.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Starry eyed, glazed eyed and maybe wabi sabi

Jupiter shining
So brightly in the night sky circles

Cloudless nights in the Bay Area are few and far between.  Light pollution makes for another layer of film over the night sky.  So imagine my surprise to look up at the celestial heavens two evenings ago to see a very large bright dot.  Not only that--another smaller bright hole close by.  What?  Can I see Jupiter with one of its moons?  I got the binoculars and yes! Jupiter rising!  Moon circling, attentive as a sentinel. So out came Herr Reinhart's boyhood telescope.  How fun is that?  We are not sure which moon we saw, but I like to think it was Io.

Now I am starry eyed and glazed eyed all at once...I have spent two days glazing.  What a messy thing to do.  It has no glory.  It has no shame.  Just moans and groans.  All the glazes look either pasty green, puke pink or bland tan.  So there isn't much thrill in looking at freshly dipped pots.  Wax here, wax there.  Pour in, Pour out.  Wipe on, Wipe off.  Mop everywhere.  What a mess!  Wabi-sabi it's not.

Friday, November 12, 2010

forgotten imperfections and pumpkins

last month's old pumpkins
still sit on the patio
faceless, forgotten 


Never got around to carving any pumpkins.  I love going to get pumpkins and tend to collect them. Some of them will live out their squashy lives until they get tossed into the compost.  The best of them will get turned into bread, pies and muffins.

In the spring I madeup a collection of face cups for an invitational mug/cup exhibit.  Collectors purchased all.  Three didn't make it to the show.  Just sat on the studio shelf. Forgotten, faceless, bisqued and imperfectly forlorn. I didn't have time to finish them in time for the exhibit. One had a glaze imperfection that may have healed if I re-fired it.  I just moved on.  Every once in a while I will pick up this pink-eared sweetness and check on the flaw inside.  What I think is: It's still to fix it...hmm...could belongs my studio...symbol of what's forgotten, flawed but resonantly perfect.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

scratch graphics turning into sgraffito

5 layers of black slip let dry each layer

getting ready to add slip to bottom--note using a sponge brush

sgraffito is very messy--I use a box to catch most of it

scratch tools--tapestry needle, sgraffito tool, clean dry brush

Use brush to brush away debris

the beginning--most detail done right to left to keep from smudging

note debris on the right---keep it brushed into corner of box

last section

the debris looks like sand

thinking about last section

one last look for now---after this I will do the lid

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

in my solitude

in my solitude
This morning I found out this article was written about the exhibit Fragile/Strength.  If you have a chance check it out  Maureen put into words what I could not. 

greenware jar with brushed on slip

Today I continue to finish up some greenware jars I threw two weeks ago.  I made up one of my favorite slips that go on greenware to bisque.  It is the basic 4 that's good from cone 04-10:

25%  Feldspar    (Custer Potash is what I have on hand at the moment)
25%  Ball Clay    (I use Kentucky Ball)
25%  Silica          
25%  EPK          

I only use this slip on functional work.  Usually in a soft peak consistency---like whipping cream.  I use an immersion blender---a cheap one to mix the slip.  I don't sieve it.  This slip I brush on or pipe on. 

pedestal/cupcake stand with sgraffito and slip work

I did some sgraffito technique on some vases, cupcake stands and jars yesterday.  As I had very little black slip made up I decided not to cover the entire pieces.  I did one vase with brush strokes and then scratched out a drawing into the brushstrokes using a tapestry needle.  All of this was spare of the moment thing.  I decided the brushstrokes reminded of feathers.  So I winged it.

Monday, November 8, 2010

back to work

leafless black branches
against autumn's azure skies---
a lone persimmon

Last week was an intense week for me.  So I really didn't have a chance to do any clay work.  I forgot to take my little camera to the artist's reception and I forgot my cell phone.  The reception was lovely.  Tobin and Rose did a beautiful installation of Cassandra's and my work.  Both of us had an hour to speak and show some visuals.  It turned out to be an incredible evening. I will try to get some photos next week.

This week I plan to finish up some jars for the Pence Gallery's Holiday Market.  Glazing this week and maybe next week.  Stay tuned to see some of the process of doing sgraffito!

Monday, November 1, 2010

ceramics a go-go

Today all the work for the Fragile / Strength exhibit at Cabrillo Gallery was loaded in the car.  First we mapped out the jeep's dimensions with chalk on the floor.  Then all the packed pieces placed here and there.  It was like a big puzzle.  There are 17 pieces for this exhibit! 

One big piece got to ride up front. Unfortunately he doesn't count as a person for the commute lane.
Sock Puppet is the tallest piece and got a window view.
Looking pensive.
Time to go to new home for now.

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