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Thursday, May 31, 2012

Finally over!!



Gerry has been photographing the drama John Edwards creates since 2005, and finally today, the jury ended the nonsense trial that has been dragging Gerry out of the house at 5am for too many mornings. Also over, at least for a couple of weeks of vacation, are basketball games, hockey, football, golf, Nascar, storms.....when did sports and celebrities become such a focus for news organizations I wonder? I remember when Gerry used to shoot real photojournalism stories and now all he shoots is sports. Why is this such an important thing in our world? Surely there are important and interesting stories my husband, who is one of the most talented photographers I know, could be shooting......
Anyway, here is a little clip from one of the slow days when the news media could find nothing else to report on but themselves and Ger got interviewed. He's in the green shirt, black glasses, the really hot guy:)
We were married in Myrtle Beach 27 years ago on June 1, met five years before that in college, and we have been best friends for all that time (well most of it anyway, haha. Here's to at least 27 more years!!!! We have some friends we have known since college coming to the Lark and Key show tomorrow night, so if you are there and we are loud, I'll go ahead and say, sorry, but we like to have fun, ok?!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Storytellers


Hi everyone:
Just a quick reminder that I will be at the Lark and Key Gallery in Charlotte NC this Friday night, June 1. The reception is from 6:00pm-9:00pm. It will also be my 27th wedding anniversary so Gerry and I are going to have an early dinner before coming to the gallery, so I should be there around 6:30. Hope to see you there!  I have some great one of a kind pieces for this show and I am very pleased with them. I hope they all find happy new homes!
This will be my last cycle of houses for a while. After the opening at Lark and Key, we are heading to Maine for a well needed vacation. I will be getting back in the studio sometime in August to begin preparing for the Chatham Studio Tour and the Carolina Designer Craftsmen show. I have lots of new ideas brewing, so keep checking in at my blog for news,
Happy Summer everyone!
Tracey

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Favorites

 This is one of my favorite pieces for the Lark and Key show. The nest has some tiny eggs in it and it's lined with wool (thanks Anna for that!) The transfers are a pain, but this one was worth it. I love this. It's just simple and sweet.
 The "vases" are finished for the Bascom show, I just have to ship them next week. I have four different ones, all houses but with a small vase component. I like where these are going and will be making more, definitely.
and today I delivered my pieces for the NC Landscape show at the Visual Arts Exchange in Raleigh. This is always a good show, and they are now in a new and very huge gallery space, so I am excited to see the show. That's about it for right now. I have plenty of work out there, so get and buy some of it!!
There won't be any more made until late June or early July, I'm taking a break! Not from blogging, just from house building!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Uh, no, that's actually an assault rifle....

 Tonight was the Hillsborough Artwalk and the Eno Gallery is featuring Daniel Essig and his wife Vicki Essig in the upstairs gallery. Wesley and I met our great pals Bob and Laura and had an early dinner with them then went to see the exhibit. Poor Gerry is still covering the John Edwards trial, so he was in Greensboro. Come on jurors, get it over with already! We have a vacation to get on with!!  Laura was wearing Wesley's favorite necklace tonight. Wes has loved it since the first time she saw it in Laura's studio and Laura gave it to her tonight. While we were having dinner someone stopped by our table to say hello, noticed Laura's necklace, commented on how great it was and asked if it was a key.
" Uh no, it's actually an assault rifle", replied Laura. Wes and I snorted, and the poor nice lady left the table probably somewhat confused by all of us, haha! We're an odd bunch, but fun to be with! Somebody has to make edgy art! and Laura does it very well....

 Speaking of edgy art, Daniel Essig's work is pretty incredible. I didn't take a lot of photos, not sure of the rules on that, you can google him and find all sorts of images. I really like his work.
His wife, Vicki had some very beautiful fiber art also, although very difficult to photograph. It was wonderful to look at though.

I have some great friends and it was fun having dinner, laughing and checking out the local art with them tonight. Susan was very busy in her gallery and has some great wood fired work for sale there. I took some photos, but I had really bad exposures and got nothing worth posting. This was the only one that even sort of came out right, a crazy moment at the end of the hall with some suspicious smells coming out of the vents....... could be the reason we were all laughing, you could get a buzz just from the fumes!
Thanks Bob and Laura for a great dinner and a fun time!!!!
xo

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Hard working gallery

LARK AND KEY GALLERY


 Wesley and I made the trek to Charlotte today to take my work to Lark and Key for their June show, Storytellers. I'm so pleased to be in this gallery. Some of my favorite artists are in this gallery, including potters Jen Mecca, Amy Sanders and Julie Wiggins. I was admirers of their work when I first started taking classes in Charlotte and now I am in the same gallery, selling my own work! Wow, just goes to show what a little hard work and tenacity will get ya :)

 Speaking of hard work: this gallery has done so much to promote my work already and I have only had a few pieces there since March.  Sandy sold one of my pieces within the first couple of weeks and the second she sold last month after running the above ad in Home and Garden. Apparently a lady saw the ad, called up and asked about the piece and came right over to get it. I love it when people connect with my work. I have very special customers and I love them!!!! Thanks so much Sandy for supporting my work and having such a beautiful gallery!!! If you are in Charlotte, this gallery is a MUST visit!!
And I have a lot more work there now!

After I went through my separation anxiety and gave up these very special pieces I have been working on for months, Wesley and I had lunch at our favorite Thai restaurant and then hit all the antique and thrift stores we could find. I found some tiny treasures at Sleepy Poet. Ironically, I used to buy props for the theater at Sleepy Poet when they were in the building that Lark and Key is now in. A very odd coincidence. After Sleepy Poet, we hit Central Ave. and found some fun retro clothing stores and a great record store, The Lunchbox. We picked up a Radiohead CD, The White Stripes and the score to the Last Temptation of Christ. By the time we got home I was in a trance, but in a good way!
Tomorrow I have to take work to Raleigh for another show I am in and then I am done with all this work stuff and plan to have some play time for a few weeks, YAY! I'll still be around for a little while though.....

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Thanks Meredith

 Thanks Meredith! The dolls you brought me are finding new homes and I have been so happy to have them with me, if only for a short while. They are off now to bring joy to others!
The set of chairs finally made it out in one piece and they are one their way to Charlotte tomorrow for the Lark and Key show.


 These two very cute girls stopped by my studio today. Allison, on the right, is a cello player and came to get the little cello girl that Meredith gave me.
It is so fun when people come by my studio and I get to show them how I make the things they are buying from me. We had a very nice visit and it's nice to know that one more of my pieces will have a happy home!! I'm sure I probably talked way too much to them! I have been very alone in my studio these past weeks. Wesley comes out to cheer me on every now and then, and that is most appreciated. It's nice to have someone to ask their opinion when I am working on something. But she is about it, so it was fun for me to get some reaction on my pieces for Lark and Key from people I don't really know.
Those pieces are now packed up and ready to go. I'll be driving them down to Charlotte tomorrow and that is the last of my clay making until after our vacation!
Enjoy your new home, sweet little girl :)

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Styx and Stones

Wesley was helping me name all of these pieces the other day, and she suggested
"Styx" for this one, so Styx it is!
I had a taller finial on this one at first, but it made it look so tall and off balance that I changed it to this door knob that Meredith gave me, and it looks much more balanced. I really like this piece. It was a bitch to get all the nails lined up and even. I did a test firing with some of the nails but they turned blue and lost the rust, so if I use the nails, I will have to add them after firing. They did hold up to the temp though, so that's good to know....
I made a few tiles for the ^6 and used the carbon trap shino. Not much carbon trapping going on, but they are nice and subtle
 This one has moose hair from Denali that Cindy Shake sent me, wrapped in wool from Virginia that Anna Branner sent. This is a fun tile!


Yesterday I finished up these vase houses for the V is for Vase show in July. I bought a bunch of test tubes and little bottles at the scrap exchange some time ago and they are perfect for these, since they won't hold water. I just made holes in the tops of the vestibules for the test tubes and the chimney on the middle one holds the little bottle. Thanks to all of you for suggestions a while back when I first posted about this show and what to do. You all gave me some great ideas to build on!!

and I am doing some more photo transfers, love them!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Back to the Barn

 House, barn, I never can tell which they look like to me. Sometimes they look like a house, sometimes a barn. I have one more kiln load to fire and I will be caught up with work for Lark and Key and The Bascom and then I am taking a little break. The cone 6 experiments put me behind a week, and although I enjoyed the time with my pal, I really don't know what the point is. I worked all day today making the pieces for the vase show and really had a great day of making. I enjoyed it so much more than trying to make functional pottery. I looked back over the pieces from the test firing, and they are ok, but just ok. Nothing that really excited me too much. If I continue to test these glazes, it may have to be on more sculptural pieces. I just don't dig making mugs and bowls all that much....... I guess I will just have to be happy being a clay artist instead of a bonafide potter. Seriously, North Carolina doesn't need another potter anyway!
I am loving this little barn on the right, the surface is wonderful, lots of depth, if only my poor old camera would focus on what I wanted it to and not what it wants to! The piece below with the key is a new cobalt terra sig that turned out really great too. BTW, thanks for all the suggestions for names for the door knob piece, but I was listening to some Led Zeppelin when I was polishing it and decided to name it Bustle in a Hedgerow, sort of a nod to Stairway to Heaven. This piece seems so british and medieval to me for some reason.....
Have a good week everyone, I'll be in the studio all week!






Saturday, May 19, 2012

Cone 6 Reduction results

 As promised here are some photos of the ^6 redux I did with Barbara McKenzie this week. We had some good results and some bad results. I put almost no effort into the glazing, dipping most everything into the bucket of carbon trap shino, which was a bit thick, so most of my stuff was white and I won't bore you with all of that. The large bowls were spoiled by a swipe of the peacock glaze that blistered, so they all go into the trash. Barbara, on the other hand, spent 14 hours glazing, and she had some lovely pieces. I photographed mostly her stuff, since it was less white and more informative. Like I said before, I am not a glazer, and not much of a maker of functional work, but this firing was interesting and I learned a lot and there are lots of possibilities for future work. These first two pieces are mine. They are glazed in Pete's weathered bronze, thin application,the inside is Mark's Temmoku, both very good at ^6 redux and the clay is Star white from Starworks in Seagrove. This is a sweet bowl, my favorite piece I think. The kiln over fired, thanks to a pyrometer that wasn't working properly and only one cone pack that is visible in the door, so this firing was more towards the ^7-8 than six. Clay bodies we used included Highwater Raku, Brownstone, Desert Buff and Starworks Star white, all ^6 clays. The desert buff bloated but the other clays held up fine even with the over firing.
 Shino and one of the glazes Barbara developed at Heywood Community College that she calls Biscayne.
 Copper Salt, shino inside, raku clay
 Pete's Weathered Blue/Temmoku, raku clay
 Spodumene, brownstone clay
 Spodumene, raku clay
 Shino inside, soda ash wash outside which gave the cup a nice wood fired look, raku clay
 This was one of the few of my cups that wasn't white, love this cup!
Malcolms Red shino, Starwhite clay
 Pete's Weathered Bronze,temmoku inside, raku clay, thick application
 Heywood shino, raku clay
 See? Everything is white, but I like it, just touches of rust here and there, nice...

 This was a test tile. It had white terra sig and the pear was avocado terra sig. It mostly burned off and left this toasty color.
 shino 
So, there ya go. I have lots more photos, will try and sort it all out and get some more posted. All in all, I am very pleased with the results, considering it was all unknown and I am doing five other things at once and had very little mind space to give to this firing. As far as a color palette goes for me, I think I would like to use the spodumene and the weathered bronze with my terra sigilata work. They have a nice matte rustic feel to them and would lend themselves nicely to bowls and pitchers and tiles. Forget cups and mugs, I am just not interested....
If you want any of the recipes, you can easily google them, they are all pretty common studio glazes and easy to find. If you can't find them, I will be happy to send them but it will be a while before I get back to you, I have a crazy few weeks coming up. I can't share the Heywood shino and the Biscayne, because they are Barbara's personal glazes and I would have to ask her.
Hope this has some interest for you, a big change of pace from what I have been doing, but the learning process never ends for me and this was a great exercise.

Let's try this again


 Thanks to the cat and me, the last two chairs I made fell apart, so I made three more. There is a reason things fall apart, it's like natural selection. These are much better versions although it took me the better part of the day to make them. I also made molds of the arms and legs so I can have more if I choose to torture myself with making more of them!
The one on the right is all glued back together, it's a mess, so I will just keep it for myself. Have you ever tried gluing legs on something? What a pain in the A#%!

 For all of you pottery purists out there, here is the kiln glamour shot. We loaded this very sweet kiln on Thursday, it was fired yesterday and I'm going over to help unload this afternoon.
 Barbara spent two days glazing her work, adding underglazes and wood ash, and wax resist, and it will all be beautiful. I spent about three hours dunking and pouring, and my stuff will undoubtedly look like shite, but I just want some information at this point. What's the use of spending all that time glazing with so many unknowns. But Barbara does things right, I just git er done!
I love the way Barbara has her kiln situated. It is right off her basement studio with a view of the lake. Such a picture perfect location to work. Sigh..... one day......
I'll be back later with some photos and ^6 redux info for you, stay tuned.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Lundy Jane

 Yesterday, Meredith left a note on my blog saying this piece reminded her of her grandfather's sister who died when she was five days old. Her name was Lundy Jane. Well, isn't that just the most perfect southern name EVER?!
I have been trying to come up with a name for this piece, and there you have it, Lundy Jane.
It is so hard trying to come up with names for pieces for gallery shows, some just come naturally but sometimes I get stuck and then just call it house #1 or something equally not creative.  Thanks to you bloggers for all the inspiration you send my way!
























       



Here is another glass door knob that Susan Meyers gave me. I love the drawer pull on this one and the crocus martis terra sigilata is beautiful. The photo doesn't show it that well, but there is so much depth to this finish, this is one of my favorites. What shall we name it?!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

New Work

 Here are some of my newest pieces that I seem to have been working on forever! But I am really pleased with them and look forward to taking them to Lark and Key.



 Frame from blogger friend Susan Meyers, door knob from Meredith Heywood


 Wool nest from blogger Anna Branner
Cello Player for blogger Allison, found object from Meredith again. I love this sweet little thing xo
still have a few more to finish.... more later