Monday, December 14, 2009

Native Pottery so far

Just a quick little update here.  I fired the pots I have finished so far last night.  Here is a quickie picture of them.  This isn't the best pic in the world I'll have to take better ones but I just wanted to get a little of a look at them for everyone.  Thanks for looking.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Big Fat Momma

Ok so she is not really 'Big Fat Momma' She is known as the 'Old Woman who never dies', but I call her my Big Fat Momma because she is huge for me. Any of you that know me know that I do tiny things. But I figured for the Heard Show it would be good to have a variety of sizes and types of pottery. This is the largest pot I've done in ages I've left the work table background so you can see just how big she is. She isn't quite done in this photo I still need to work on the burnish a bit and put her tattoos on her. I am pleased with how she has come out. I find it amusing that this form is identified as an old woman. I'll let you guess why. I'll just say that some of the features are just not typical of an old woman and let you figure out the rest.  Another thing I find interesting about this form is the fact that although she is very fat she has this backbone showing.  Almost like a dragon spine down her back.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Tempe Art Festival

Yesterday I attended the Tempe Art Festival Winter edition. There seemed to be a pretty good crowd there. I saw lots of pretty beaded things. One gal that had lots of peyote and had some that was ruffled that was really pretty and sort of unusual. There were at least three or four bead embroidery people. Their offerings varied from simple beaded cabs to elaborate embroidered neck pieces. One lady had some really nice crocheted wire and bead things. She had purses, headbands, necklaces, barrettes, etc. With delicate crocheted and beaded flowers. Lots of work there.

There were lots of silver jewelry people some that were forged, some with original castings some that were apparently pmc. There was a guy there from Hawaii, he was probably freezing his patooti off, that had some interesting organic vines, flowers an various delicate cast shapes. One lady had all sorts of jewelry with little sayings and words on it. One that caught my eye was a simple metal plate with a cross stitched square that said 'a stitch in time saves 9' around the edge. Also several variations on pottery.

One guy had some fabulous crystal glazed pottery. One booth with some very interesting gourds. Lots of glass. Overall it was a lovely show with a nice mix of interesting art. The weather ended up not too terrible as it warmed up toward noon. I had a good time but in the end I was sort of glad that I missed the deadline to get into that show I would have been freezing standing in a booth. Kim who I had gone down to see specifically looked a bit cold and said she was cold the day before too. But she reported that her sales were pretty good and that is always a good thing to hear.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Native American Pottery Time

Hello everyone, time for my monthly post.  It seems that is about as frequently as I can manage to post.

Big News to report though.  I have been accepted to the Heard Indian Market this year in the category of Pottery.   This is very exciting for me.  I've tried to get into this show several times without success.  This time I submitted in both jewelry and pottery and was accepted for pottery.  Now this is wonderful except for one tiny detail.  I have no pots.  I do have two months before the show, however, so guess what I'll be doing for the next two months.  You guessed it, making Native pots.

I've already been working at it.  The photo to the right is the first of my native pots.  It is unfired in this photo.  The photo shows you the pot from the side, front, and back so you can see the whole thing.  As usual for me this is a small pot he is only 3 inches tall, big for me.  He is a replica in miniature of an urn found in one of the moundbuilder archeological digs.   I would be happy to hear what you think of him.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Good Monday Morning to you all.

Good Monday morning.  Just a bit of recovering and catching up after the weekend show.  I would like to thank everyone that visited my blog during the Open Studio Event.  I hope you enjoyed the event with all the various blogs.  I finally had the opportunity to visit everyone's blogs and see all the fun stuff that everyone in the Open Blog event had contributed.  It was a wonderful array of interesting photos, recipes, and studio shots.  If you you missed the actual event you should go back and have a look at all the wonderful photos everyone posted.  Even though the actual event with the discounts and give-aways is over you can still see all the lovely gifts, recipes, and wonderful photos everyone shared.

As promised here are the two winners of my giveaways.  As it wasn't possible for me to get online during the actual event the announcements are a little bit delayed but better late than not at all right?  Summer Alyssa won the first give-away and Kristie Roeder won the second one.  Congratulations to you both.

The weekend show that I was at was also a lot of fun.  We had lots of good snacks and wine tasting to go along with a lovely selection of art.  Several of my online friends stopped by and said hi.  It was so great to get to see and meet people that you have talked to online.  I always love to meet my online friends at actual live events.  It is so much fun to show them special pieces that are my favorites and to see what things they like the best from my selection of goodies.  Thanks to everyone that attended the show and stopped by for a chat.

I hope to be doing more active blogging and some more giveaways in the future.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Giveaway #2

The Winner of the Second Giveaway is:

Kristie Roeder
Artisan Clay Jewelry

Thank you Kristie for participating.

The Studio Evolution

Hello for those of you that like to see the work areas we present a raw look at the studio.  My current studio is still evolving it has been under construction for the last 5 years or so.  When we moved out to our current location we decided to build my studio over the garage.  This is the first piece of floor that we built.  The stairway is to the left of the photo.  This shot is taken looking from the door of my kiln room across the back of my studio.  This area has only recently been 'finished' (well nearly finished)  ironic since it was the first area to be built.  As you can see on the far wall we have foam insulation in the building.  The first year that I worked in the studio I didn't have this foam insulation and nearly cooked while working in this very area on tables made up of plywood over saw horses.  The steel building would get very hot in our phoenix summers.  So much so in fact that if you happened to touch it by accident you would actually burn yourself.  Sitting here working felt much like being under the grill of your oven.  One day in particular I remember that I came out to the studio to work and by 10:30 am it was 114 degrees in here.  Needless to say I didn't work long that day.  Now with the nice insulation and an evaporative cooler it is quite comfortable.

This is a shot of the same area now, looking from the other side over toward my kiln room.  In the foreground you can see my china painting table with several pieces in process and a book that I was using for reference.  The next table over I use for building hand built pieces with both porcelain and PMC it currently is covered with PMC projects.  The far table against the wall of the kiln room I use for cleaning cast greenware, sanding, drilling and polishing things.

This is a shot of my kiln room.  You can see the exhaust fan on the wall and my two larger kilns.  I now have a steel table above the kiln on the left with my smallest kiln on it.  The door is a pocket door that slides into the wall keeping it out of the way.  I can close the door and turn on the fan to keep all the bad fumes out of my studio area.

This is a shot of my pouring area.  This is a rather old photo and there are shelves against the left and far walls now as well.  To the left you can see my cooler.  On the right you see the table where I pour all of the slip cast pieces that I make.  Above the table is a cabinet that holds all of my tiny mold for my dollhouse miniatures and some of the jewelry pieces.  Most of the over 500 molds that I have I have made myself.  I make molds from a variety of things including found objects, antique pieces, buttons, and original sculptures that I have made specifically for a given purpose.

This shot is of a table area that is located on the other side of the stairway.  The table you see is against the wall of the stairway and you are looking back toward the first area I showed you.  It is very bright because of the lovely windows that are across the back of the building.  To the right of this area behind a wall is the pour area.  This is where I was doing my china painting while we were working on the area next to the windows that I showed you first and you can see the painting materials on this table.  They have since been moved to the new tables which I showed you first.  This area is now cleared out and is ready to be finished.  We have to finish the ceiling (cover up the insulation), paint and texture the walls, and tile the floor.  Then this area will be used for the assembly of jewelry and other pieces.  This completes the tour of my studio.  I hope you have enjoyed it.

Return to the BOC BLOG

The First Gift of the Day

And the Winner of the First GiveAway is:

Summer Alyssa.

Thank you Summer for participating.

Welcome to the Open Studio Blog Event

Hello Everyone and welcome to the Open Studio Blog Event.  During this event and until midnight tonight I am offering a 25% discount on any purchase (product only not including shipping) from either my Etsy Shop or the Bead Shop on my website or the Jewelry Shop on my website As both Etsy and my website utilize paypal I will refund the 25% when I process and ship your order.  Just leave 'instructions to the seller' on paypal when you check out and say 'BOC Blog Event'

I am primarily a porcelain artist, however, I do some PMC (precious metal clay) work, some wire wrapping, and I've also done silver smithing, silver casting, and copper enameling in the past.  I like a variety of styles, materials, and processes and my work reflects that.  I've been a porcelain artist for the past 20+ years.  I am continually trying new things, combining processes, techniques, and ideas in an attempt to keep it all fresh and interesting not only for my potential customer but for myself.  I enjoy the variety that porcelain offers me.  I enjoy fine detail and creating things that wow people.  My biggest inspirations come from antique porcelain, ceramics, jewelry, and designs.  I really love the Art Nouveau period's flow of design and smooth sensuous lines.  I love the Victorian era's glitz, romance, and floral designs.  I love to combine those aspects and create new products with a taste of the old.  Most recently I've been doing some whimsical beads with elves, fairies and other fantasy type themes.  Here are a couple of examples of the latest porcelain beads.  The one at the top is an example of one of the whimsical designs it is titled 'Sometimes the Dragon Wins'  The idea came from an old cartoon that I have loved for years.  If you look closely you will see the bones and armor of the poor knight that met this dragon on the day the dragon won.  The dragon is picking his teeth with the knights lance.  And the fate of the poor knight hardly needs more explanation.  The second bead has a design that was inspired by Roseville pottery.  These beads are available in my Bead Shop on my website.

To Return to The BOC Blog so you can visit all the other participants in the Open Studio Blog Event Click the BOC BLOG links in each post.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Halloween Approaches

I don't know if any of you readers remember the project from last year with the faces that was supposed to be combined with pmc.  You can see the complete collection of faces in the archives for October of 2008  Originally these were to be a collaboration between myself and another artist.  However, as the other artist never got around to working on them I finally requested that they be returned so that I could complete them.  Since Halloween is approaching rapidly I chose to start with this piece.  The coffin and the ghoul are made with colored porcelains.  The top coffin lid, hinges and catch are made with PMC.  I would love to hear what you think of this project.

Steam Punk Skull

With the popularity of steam punk designs and the fact that Halloween was approaching I thought I would try to create something steam punk.  This is what I ended up with.  It is a sort of steam punk ghoul.  This poor soul is somewhere between a cyborg a ghoul and a skull.  Sort of darth vader meets steam punk.  The flesh on his skull is peeled away on one side exposing the bare skull.  You can see where it is folded over at the top of his head.  He has really had a rough life but he is pressing on.  He  has a respirator and hearing device which both look to be adjustable with a sort of geared knob.  He also has a monocular goggle protecting the eye on the side of his skull that is missing the flesh. All of these devices are finished in simulated brass and held on with simulated leather straps with brass buckles.  Here's looking forward to Halloween everyone.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Decisions Decisions

Gearing up for Sunday's open studio blog event.  Hope you will join us all here for the big day.  Just drop by Sunday afternoon the big event starts at 1pm and there will be lots of fun.  Give Aways...Big decisions here.  What to put in the giveaways.  Should it be this set of beads or that focal or perhaps some finished jewelry.  So many styles and techniques to choose from.  Does anyone have any suggestions?  I always hate this sort of decisions.  I want to include something that you will all want but what could it be.  We have extremes.  We could pick one of them. Or there are all the lovely flowers and organics.
Perhaps a nice leaf shape organic celebrating the fall season would be good.  But what about the lovely hand painted things there are lots of pretty beads to choose from.  Oh the decisions to be made.  I'll get my thinking hat on.  Any suggestions are welcome.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Beautiful necklace with a vintage feel

This lovely beaded necklace has a very vintage look and feel. It illustrates how a lovely hand painted porcelain cab can be utilized with seed beads and crystals to create a lovely necklace with a very dainty dressy look to it. This necklace would be a wonderful addition to a dressy outfit or a great way to dress up a simple casual one. You can see the close up of the cab in the necklace displayed in the center of the circle of the necklace. More cabs that would work well in a similar design can be found in my Bead Shop There are also cab sets that would be great for a complete set with earrings and necklace to match. This necklace was made by Chris Neit of Good Quill Hunting. using one of my hand painted cabs.
Below are some of the cabs that are currently available in my Bead Shop that would work well in a vintage style necklace. These feature transfers of actual vintage photos. Some have been colored just like the old colored sepia photos others are just the sepia color like the uncolored photos.

Friday, September 04, 2009

With the Best Bead Fall show fast approaching I thought I would give you all a little sneak peak of what I'm bringing to the show. Click the pic to see it better. Sorry for the link out I tried 3 times to upload the picture here but blogger was not cooperating.

This is a small vessel pendant. It is 1 1/6" long (27mm) by 5/8" wide (17mm)

The dragon decoration is completely built by slip trailing. For more information on this technique see this Slip Trailing tutorial. His neck and tail create the attach points for the necklace where they come away from the base vessel.

The underlying bead/vessel is white porcelain. The dragon is done with various colored porcelain slips. It was then finished with mother of pearl over the top of the glaze.

This will be available on my website if it does not sell at next week's show. Hope to see you at the show. If you want more information on the show visit the Website for the Show Here

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

New Cabs

Last month I showed you one of the samples that Good Quill Hunting's Chris Neit made using one of my new cabs. Now I actually have some cabs available in my Bead Shop. I hope you will all come and have a look. I have tried to make a variety of styles and designs. I have some more that I am working on and will have those available in a week or so as well, but most of them are up now. This photo shows you a little sample of what is in the Bead Shop Cabs now. I will be posting more of the examples that Chris is doing here soon as well, so you can see more things that you can do with these cabs.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Green Dragon

Announcing new cabs. This is the first of the sample pieces made from my new cabs. These new cabs will be available on my website in the very near future. They will feature a variety of design styles and themes. I am open to any suggestions for designs that you would like to see on these cabs. They are all hand painted, however, I have transferred the design outlines on most of them which allows me to offer you a beautiful hand painted cab for much less than if I were to hand draw the design. Hand drawing the complicated designs can take anywhere from 2-4 hours or more depending on the design. By transferring the computer aided design I can reduce the time required to complete the piece. Each design is carefully hand painted with china paints after the design has been transferred. Shading and multiple layers of color are added just as they would be if I had not transferred the design. All of the colors and highlights (this particular cab has gold highlights) are durable fired on colors.

This wonderful necklace is the work of Christine Neit of Good Quill Hunting and is available for sale from her. I think she has done a magnificent job on this piece. The beads and stones she chose to use in this piece compliment the cab wonderfully and shows exactly what I was looking for, that combining porcelain, stones and beads make for a wonderful piece of jewelry.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Miniatures on Etsy

Hello everyone.

I've just put up some of my extreme porcelain charms/pendants on my Etsy shop.
These are the really intricate over the top little scenes in pendants that I have been working on lately.

Each component in these are carefully hand sculpted with colored porcelains and then assembled into tiny pendant/charm cases. They are then fired and glazed and fired again. After the glaze firing I put in some final details with china paint and fire them again. Finally I cut a piece of glass and epoxy it to the front of the charm/pendant to protect the fragile scene and grind the edge of the glass to a smooth beveled surface.

Mushroom Scene

I have also put up most all of the dollhouse miniatures that I currently have in stock onto my Etsy shop.

Hope you will all pop over and have a look Amazing Porcelain Etsy Shop

Monday, March 30, 2009

Pit Fired

Well after months of intending to pit fire a group of Native American pieces that I had done over a year ago, I finally did it and actually got them pit fired. There were a combination of miniature pots made in the style of the ancient mound builders of the late Woodland and Mississippian periods. These tiny pots are all hand built, hand burnished, and then pit fired. The two tallest pots in the back are just 1.5 inches tall.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Still Alive Here

Well the hectic month of February is finally over and things are beginning to settle down just a bit. February was a great month. My good friend Vladislav was here from Bulgaria for most of the month. He came over again to do the Big Tucson Bead Show. We were at the Manning House Bead Show again and it went well. Even with the slow economy and the effects of the show splitting last year it turned out to be a good show. There was plenty of room for people to browse and tables and chairs available for them to sit down and take a break to regain the energy to continue shopping. I think this was a big plus for the show. So many times at a show you get so exhausted walking around shopping and there is usually no place to rest so you end up leaving the show or rushing through it. Many people were taking advantage of the places available to rest and relax. We will be returning to the Manning House again next year in anticipation of another great show filled with lots and lots of interesting artists. If you are interested in the great art beads and don't want to have to wade through a bunch of other stuff to see them be sure to put the Manning House Bead show on your list of places to visit in Tucson next year. We will be looking forward to seeing you there.

Now back to getting it out there. After encouragement from many people I have decided to open an Etsy Shop. I will be putting in a variety of things many of which will not be on my regular website. So for a look at some different things come have a look at my etsy shop. Amazing Porcelain Etsy