Due to a recent cancellation, I have now ONE spot open for a Clay and
Glass workshop I'm teaching here at my studio in a few weeks.
Here are the details...
Upcoming Workshop: July 16, 17, and 23.
Glass and Clay – An Exploration in Combining Materials
interactive workshop will introduce the fundamentals of glass fusing
and clay hand building. Learn how to create simple, slab-built
earthenware forms that incorporate fused and slumped glass. Some
experience with glass or clay is helpful, but not necessary.
Maximum class size: 3 students
Saturday, July 16 from 10:00-5:00,
Sunday, July 17 from 10:00-3:00,
and Saturday, July 23 from 10:00-5:00
Tuition: $250 + $60 for materials and firings.
Location: Ocala, FL
If you're interested, let me know ASAP. I like to keep classes small so there's lots of hands-on time.
Let me just take a minute here and brag about my little brother - the
awesome concept artist. Yep! That's a self-portrait he did of himself as
a pirate. He has a sense of humor and
Here's what he has to say...
started like so many others in this field did, growing up on three main
activities: watching TV, playing video games, and drawing. Fortune
blessed me with parents that tolerated the first two, and relentlessly
encouraged the last one. They even went so far as to send me to the
Savannah College of Art and Design for a degree in Sequential Art.
I graduated Summa Cum Laude in 2006 and then gradually made my way into
the game industry, starting in Game Testing. Being a North Carolina
resident at the time, I had many amazing companies to strive for nearby.
My experiences at Redstorm Entertainment and Epic Games were
unforgettable and invaluable, demystifying the seemingly magical process
of game development. Gone forever were the illusions of "tightening up
the graphics". I currently
work as a Game Artist at Schell Games in Pittsburgh, PA, creating
anything from concept illustrations of characters to volumes of user
interface designs and assets. In such a flexible company, I've had to
adapt to new challenges and adopt new skill sets on every project. It
has been and continues to be an incredible experience!"
Here are a few images from his portfolio. (Yes, I am one very proud Big Sister!)
Environments - Characters -
Personal Work -
Holy Smokes! His work blows my mind!
true. We were blessed with parents that completely supported our
artistic pursuits. And we both know how luck we are because of this.
(Thanks Mom and Dad!)
Ben loves his current job, but is looking
to move away from the icebox of a place he's been calling home (aka
Pittsburgh, PA). He's hoping to settle in with a great company somewhere
warm; possibly even in North Carolina and closer to family.
So, if you or someone you know is looking for a creative, dedicated concept artist, look no further. Ben's your man.
You can check out more of Ben's work at http://chaneyfolio.blogspot.com/
Or shoot him an email: email@example.com
Meagan (aka Big Sis)
I've been working on a new, experimental sculpture for the upcoming Instructor Exhibition at Arrowmont
and I'm pretty excited about it! Sketches for this piece have been in
the works for awhile, but it just wasn't sure how to build it. Then I
watched the demos at NCECA
, and a light bulb went off.
I'm having problems with the glass slumping through these little
windows. The problem is easily corrected by re-firing, but I'm running
out of time. (Work is due to Arrowmont
Whoops! See that ugly gap! Time for a re-fire.
Thankfully, my new test kiln
is making those firings a lot quicker! Looks like I may be cranking her
up everyday so that I can make that deadline. More pictures soon. And
keep your fingers crossed that I don't run into any unexpected disasters
Another little addition... My new Skutt GlazeTech Kiln!
this may seem to come out of the blue, I've actually been saving up for a
test kiln for quite some time. Even when we were building the studio
back in 2008 we added enough power and an extra electrical outlet for
the test kiln I hoped to have one day. Yesterday was That Day!
18 months ago I got serious about saving up and researching what I
would need. First of all, why did I want a test kiln? Well I am obsessed
with glazing and glaze testing
and a smaller kiln will make this process faster and more efficient.
I'm hoping all this testing will help me transition into making a new
body of work. And, after talking with other clay mamas, there seems to
be a consensus that after children the scale of the works decreases as
does the quantity you're able to produce. (at least for a while.) A mini
kiln just seemed to have the answers.
My first kiln, Lily
, is an L&L kiln
and I love her! But for this purchase, I had narrowed it down to a Skutt KM 818-3
or KM 714.
was afraid the 818 was still a little too big for what I needed so I
was leaning towards the 714, but wanted to check them out in person at
the Skutt booth at NCECA.
My new (still-to-be-named) kiln and Lily my L&L. Funny, they look about the same size in this picture.
I was initially disappointed when I didn't see either the 818 or 714 on
display at NCECA. But they were more than happy to show me their new
GlazeTech kiln. Honestly, I was initially skeptical and not impressed. I
think because this kiln is so much different is size and shape than the
others I was considering and has a different style computer.
But the salesman (good salesman that he is) kept talking and I began to turn around. Actually, a square kiln does
make more sense to test square tiles - you can fill the space more
efficiently. And the similar controller still had all the capabilities
of the fancier one, just less buttons, so it made the kiln more
And Atlantic Pottery Supply
was offering a 30% NCECA discount
! (Which they are still running through the end of April
on kilns, wheels, slab rollers, etc. Check it out! Kathy Goldstein over
there was so helpful and patient as she answered all my questions.)
Here she is coming off the truck. Oh Happy Day!
I did it! I finally bit the bullet and ordered it. Now we just need to
hook up the vent and do an electrical update and she'll be good to go. I
already have so many things planned for her. Don't worry, I'll keep you
posted and will share any exciting glaze recipes I find.
**Click here or check out the Studio Construction tab to read more about how we built the Studio.
**Speaking of glazing - here are some of my favorite cone 04, low-fire glaze recipes
**Check out Atlantic Pottery Supply here.
Well, my Etsy shop
is on "vacation mode" no longer. After 6 months of maternity leave, I finally got around to adding 20 tile plaques
to celebrate Spring and this re-opening, I am offering 25% off your
purchase now through April 30. Just use Coupon Code: SPRING2011
Wednesday, April 06, 2011
Whew! NCECA was great but we sure are all tuckered out..
Got some great ideas from lectures and panel presentations. Especially the demo with Deborah Schwartzkopf
and Brian Kakas
and the Emerging Artist talks Saturday morning.
Cant wait to get back into the studio to experiment with some new forms and surfaces!
Lately, there are three reasons why I'm glad I live in Florida:
It's been warm, sunny, and gorgeous since mid-February (think blue
skies, azaleas, camellias, jasmine, Japanese magnolias, etc)
2.) No state income tax (and April 18 is quickly approaching)
3.) The Sunshine State is hosting its first NCECA Conference (National Council on Education of Ceramic Arts)
and I'm going to be one of the 5000+ ceramic people descending on Tampa/St Petersburg next week!
Pete is just 1.5 hours from us and where my sister-in-law calls home,
so we'll be able to stay with family. That's right. I'll have Cooper in
tow. (Thank you ergo baby carrier
My Little Man is just 5 months old, so it would be tough to travel far
for a conference. And even tougher to leave him at home for 4 days.
(That's a lot of milk to pump!)
I am definitely looking forward
to seeing folks and talking clay, cones, and kilns again! That part of
my brain feels a bit rusty after of months of conversations that focus
on diaper changes and spit up.
As a Florida resident and UF Alum,
I do wish I would have been able to take advantage of more of the NCECA
exhibition opportunities that came my way. But I had to make my peace
with that back when I was pregnant and deciding on maternity leave. I
know Cooper isn't built of clay, glass, or steel, but I still believe
he's the best thing I've ever made!
So, come on down to The Sunshine State! We hope to see you at NCECA next week.
Here we are. The end of March 2011. The past year has been a blur of inspiration, excitement, and change.
I finished a post-baccalaureate ceramics program at The University of Florida, went to my first NCECA conference in Philadelphia, spent a month in Montana as a resident at the Clay Studio of Missoula, taught a workshop at Arrowmont, took a class with Michael Sherrill at Penland, oh, and had a baby!!
(Ceramic Wall Mosaic at Penland School of Crafts)
My head is spinning! I feel like I have hardly had a moment to process some of the ideas that started forming last March. March of 2010.
I still have boxes of work from traveling and teaching I haven’t even unpacked. (And if you know me, that totally goes against my ultra-organized way of life. Those packed boxes are driving me crazy!)
(Test tiles I made while at The Clay Studio of Missoula that are still waiting to be unpacked!)
The bottom line is that my experiences from the past 365+ days have me itching to make some changes in my work.
What changes? I’m not exactly sure yet. Do I switch to cone 6? Try a new clay body – porcelain or white earthenware? What new, exciting glaze recipes can I find? Do I continue to make wall sculpture? Slabs or extruded forms? How can I incorporate more cast glass? Oh, oh, and that mold making, resin-casting technique John Byrd demoed at Penland still has me thinking.
I imagine the changes I make will be gradual. As a new mother, the world I lived in for 30 years is now different. My perspective and experiences are forever altered. Even time has new meaning.
So, as I slowly sort through these ideas, I also wonder what I will be thinking next Spring as I watch the azaleas bloom, Cooper toddling alongside.
(Photo by my wonderful father-in-law during Cooper's first beach trip.)
Anyone who has worked with clay knows there is a lot of process involved. Certain things need to be done at certain times. But what do you do if your time and the clay’s time aren’t in sync?
Well, I’ve used Damp Boxes and kept clay wet for up to a year in these babies. And I’m finding this method is perfect for the brief intervals of time I’m able to sneak out to the studio. It’s a cheep and easy solution.
In a nutshell, it works because of the way plaster absorbs water. If plaster is dryer than clay, it will draw moisture from the clay. If the plaster has been soaked I water, then it keeps the clay from drying out and maintains a humid atmosphere within the box.
I cut these circles out in early October before Cooper was born. When I finally got around to turning them into Minis, it was the end of January but the clay was still perfect to work with!
Here’s how to make a Damp Box:
- Fill bottom of plastic tubs with 1 -1 ½” of mixed plaster. Plaster mixing guidelines here.
- Allow plaster to set/dry.
- Add water. How much?? Depends on the size of the box. I add water till there is 1/8” of water and then wait till that is absorbed. With a new damp box, it could take several rounds of adding water and letting it absorb. My damp boxes are 7 years old, so I occasionally add more water to “recharge” them. Basically, you want it to be wet without having pools of water on top.
I've also heard of people using styrofoam coolers or old refrigerators to help control the drying process. What about you?
Moving right along with that large mixed-media wall commission
Thanks to two 30-minute naps
and one long
nap (probably brought about by today's visit to the pediatrician for more shots. boo for the shots. yay for the long nap!)
23 ceramic forms are complete and hung for a quick layout review.
(Well, the ones that would fit on my design wall are hung at least)
Now, I'll be moving on to making the cast glass and steel pieces. That's what's gonna go where those circles are drawn.
I might have started 2 months ago, but I'm making progress none-the-less. And, afterall, slow but steady wins the race!
Hey - Want to see other posts of this project. Check here