Brushing away into Terra Cotta Days

Nearly done with things for the holiday markets. The last two months have had a roller coaster feeling.  Life decisions.  Lack of movement. Too much movement. Things breaking down and up.  Even my laptop is off to my son's again to replace the keyboard.  I have borrowed Herr's, but mainly use my tablet.  Now the tablet is mischievously uncooperative.  I think it always was, it just showing some attitude now that the laptop is getting a facelift. 

fresh from the kiln--the plain ones will get a layer of glaze
New brushes are dreamy.  Especially good ones.  Gotta love a beautifully made brush loaded with color, it gives such a feeling of lightness and touch. I have an under-fired glazed plate that I practice on.  It helps loosen my wrists so the elegant brush becomes an extension of my fingertips.  I can wipe the stain away and try different things. 


Today it is cloudy and it sprinkled some wet stuff onto my deck.  Such a tease those naughty clouds. It stopped as soon as it started.  It has been an arid year.  The trees are stressed and brood with crackled leaves.  Evergreens shed pine needles as if crying for rain.  Abandoned and twiggy nests, no longer hidden by green foliage, sway in the wind. I can finally see the robin's nest high in the sycamore, no longer a secret abode. I think of pumpkin farms instead of pots or sculptures.  Or a trip to the see the changing colors in the foothills of the Sierra---wedging clay can wait. Day dreaming of mud puddles with wonder and hope.  Rain or no rain, I still love these terra-cotta days filled with leafy madness.


  1. It's sad to think of all the plants suffering without rain isn't it, I hope the West gets some rain soon and a gentle rain to soak into the earth and save the plants waiting. I am surprised at how thick your plates are but then again not, I tend to make mine too thin and then they warp. What a fun way to usher in the autumn with brush strokes. I love the combination on the last plate with the orange and black, this time of year those terra cotta colors just seem right.

    1. The thicker 3/8" edge adds a visual element of a wide band or ribbon or framing. These are small---around 5" in diameter---so they are light in weight. As to the rain---I made some cloud plates out of porcelain with thinner edges---maybe if I put them out in the garden they will catch some fleeting rain drops!

  2. I love these terra cotta plates! - the shape, the brushwork, the fullness of them . . .
    I worry so about the western part of this country - so extremely dry. Maybe your porcelain cloud plates with be a rain-dance teasing some moisture to fall.
    My desktop computer is at the repair shop now -- must be mercury retrograde.
    Hope you are out traipsing around the pumpkin farms , , , , wedging can definitely wait!

    1. Hello Judy! Yes, wedging did wait. I have some lovely pumpkins now. I'm down to using my tablet (nook) and can hear Mercury snickering as I hunt and peck my words on this incredibly tiny keyboard. Rain is coming this weekend so I must finish up the raindrops I made :)

  3. I love your plates Charlene. There's something very pleasing about a wash of decorated slip on rustic red terracotta.
    I have some new red clay that I will play with once the Christmas/New Year rush is over. I'm looking forward to playing with darker clay as opposed to my usual white...

    Mercury certainly played havoc this past retro cycle :(
    I hope all is restored back to normal again.
    And, that heavy rain clouds grace the earth in your corner of the world.
    Your darling little clay bird echoes that wish.

    1. My apologies for such a late reply. Not only my laptop needed help, but my android Nook went kaput. I finally have a new laptop and a new Nexus 10.

      As I write this reply it is raining heavily, but with much stormy grace! Thank you, Vicki.


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