Here is a bigger bottle form that I am making for a group of bottles that will go to the Greenhill Winter Show this December. This piece is 26 inches tall and around12-14 inches across. These new bottles are so much fun to make as I can build much higher than I could throw. Soon I want to make some forms that are life size and build kilns around them to fire them. (ps. got the idea from Mike Sandford, potter extraordinaire from Elon University) HMMMMM....can't wait till January, my vacation month....
During fall my focus is tuned to the trees, their rustle of leaves, the beauty in their colors. The trees seem to beckon to us all with their whispering and waving limbs. I thought it would be a great time to finish my Treemakers story. Here they are with the leaves falling down around them. When I was explaining the story at the show last weekend, I realized the the story needed a traumatic event and resolution much like Snow White or Hansel and Gretel. So I am trying to decide what will happen to these two twins and how they will resolve it.
The baby chicks are growing up and Frieda is almost a full grown Chicken/ Rooster.....we don't know yet. I will post pictures soon and tell you a couple of funny chicken stories to boot.
The bottles are coming along at a fast rate. This new accordion form is fascinating me at the moment....it is not only the form but the challenge of making this shape. It is very fragile and tedious, lots of waiting for the piece to set up before continuing upwards. I won't even mention how delicate my touch has to be to carve this simple line design......I'm in love.
And then these little guys have come creeping back after watching a UFO Hunters marathon a couple of weeks ago. Love that show! The embryo design started 14 years ago when Miss Haley was conceived. I wanted to watch how she was developing each week. Now and then they become aliens and after seeing about 6 UFO shows in a row, they seemed appropriate.
Crazy days are here again as the fall season gets into gear and I so miss the blogisphere, everyone's blogs and their inspirational work. I must find more time in the day to get some computer time in. Another reason for my delinquency on the blog is this little girl here. We incubated 4 eggs and Frieda is the only one who survived. She is a sweetie but is spoiled and she just wants to be near me or Will. It is very hard to work on clay with a baby chickie sitting on your shoulder...lap...hand...arm....
When she hatched she was a weak chick and we didn't think she would make it. But 3 weeks later she sure is giving us a run for our money. We have more babies coming next week so I'll post pics of them when they arrive.
More bottle forms as I can't get them out of my mind....and also I promised 20 to a designer for the furniture market next month.
And these are so rooting sconces meant to put plant cuttings in to root. They of course could be used for anything.
Hope everyone is doing well out their in the blogging land. Can't wait to stop by for a visit soon. Have a great fall! Leanne
Well, I finished the snake. Will had to get up on our tallest ladder to take this picture and you still can't really see the image that well. The new owner said she was going to put it up this weekend so I may be able to take a picture of the the snake installed in it's new home this week sometime. YAY! I have been obsessed with circles and geometric designs as of late. I used to work with these patterns a lot in the late 90's and left them off for bigger surface space for imagery. Now they are creeping back and taking over. And boy are my hands tired!
This is the project I have been obsessssssssing over the past couple of weeks. A friend of mine, who is also my delightful massage therapist, ordered this series of tiles to go along her wall at the ceiling. She is a great lover of wildlife and nature so we came up with this swamp theme featuring the main character Susie the snake. She is not one certain type of snake, all though I did use the copperhead as a sort of model. I had great fun creating each tile with all of it's hidden animals and plants. On the back of the tiles are fun facts about each animal and quotes about them that I found from famous people. I added a couple of little sayings of my own. There are 13 tiles in all, each measuring 14 x 12 inches a piece. Right now as I write, 5 tiles are in the kiln glazing away.....keep your fingers crossed that they don't warp or crack.......
We've been on the road again. First to Cleveland, Ohio, then across and up to Lake Ontario in NY, and finally a straight shot back home to NC. Whew!...( all with the three dogs!) ...and though we had such a wonderful time..... We are glad to be home. I have missed everyone and can't wait to catch up on the blogisphere and all my blogging friends. I know y'all have been up to some great art and can't wait to see what magic you all have created. Until I get myself together enough to post a new looooooong project that I have been obsessing over, here are some pics of the vacation.
Hope all of you are having the best of summers! Leanne
Here are the eye bottles finished. I am liking the color, the crackles, the eyes.....but the shininess is a little too shiny? Is that possible? Too shiny......it seems almost like saying too much icing...As IF! But I am saying it. Too Shiny. Too much like candy. It makes the bottles look commercially made. I would like to tone it down just a little.
Now the glaze on the eye box is one that I am in love with. I think it gives the eye design more depth and more creep...that is a creepy feel.
More Ophelia.....she is an obsession and she is everywhere. Drawings, paintings, clay....everywhere. I love her.
And the the eye bottles of which there are 3.
And finally another crazy monster bottle with lots of heads on the surface.
Recently, I have been making lots of clay work, finishing orders, and thinking. Thinking about what direction I would like the forms to take. Mostly I am thinking about pushing the boundaries of the forms I am used to making. So far I am only thinking in sketches. When I get some nailed down hopefully they will be good enough to share....
After the spring season I decided to rededicate myself to painting every week. Well, I think I went a little overboard. I haven't touched clay in almost 3 weeks....is that possible? At first I missed it terribly. But it seems now I am obsessed with Ophelia and her blue tragic glances. Planning to get back to clay tomorrow. Orders are amassing as the days go along and I am getting way behind..... It will be good to get my hands in clay again.
The new painting with oil. There is a problem somewhere in the left corner. I am thinking about turning the hair dark blue and taking out the stripes. Or taking out the flowers in her lower hand. It is so wet now that I think I will have to stop for awhile.............. On to the next one.
My newest painting of Ophelia. It is rather large for me....maybe 3 feet by 2 and 1/2. This is the under coat of acrylic using just Prussian Blue and White. I have started the top coat of oils now using only blues. I am limiting my palette right now because I am scared to paint, timid in my choices. This limitation makes me bolder and the lack of color choices makes me concentrate on the strokes, the composition, the whole of the work. We will have to see if the limitation works....
I love this painting Ophelia by John Everett Millais. I ashamedly first saw this painting in the teenage love story/movie named Fire with Fire (and a movie I watched numerous times as a teen with my best girlfriend). If you were a girl born in the 70's and were 16 when this gushy film came out you will understand the attraction.
Any hoo, I have since ( thankfully ) seen the painting in person and not from some old TV screen. All I can say is It Is Amazing. I know that it is over used in adds, prints and the like.....but it is Amazing nonetheless. I am fascinated and dumb struck every time I see it.
So, when I came home from London this time (after standing in front of it drooling for a couple of hours) I wanted to take up the subject of Ophelia myself. Here is one result on a pot. And the following sculpture/bottle is the Bird King, claiming attention again, resenting Ophelia for her beauty and seductive ways.
Sigh. No rest for the weary. Back in the studio working like a mad woman trying to get ready for the last show of spring all the while planning a trip to NY on Saturday. Here's a peek at what I am working on..... More bottles but now with faces. It wasn't until I made 2 that I realized they look like Gumby and therefore are not quite as appealing to me. Will thinks they look nothing like Gumby....what do you think? I am surprised it matters to me. In the beginning I was completely in love with them. Now I am thinking of not even firing the little fellows. It is always amazing to me how quickly my interest can fade if I feel like I've referenced a cartoon, another artist, another person's design too distinctly. I do feel though it is impossible not to be influenced by the visual stimuli around us.
On another note..... I don't want to leave out some of the pictures from California. I really had an amazing time. The people were sweet, welcoming and gorgeous. The flowers divine. The succulents were huge and some of them....truly.....were bigger than me. (I'm 5'2") We went to the beach and looked in these amazing tide pools finding hermit crabs and bright blue-green sea anemone. We were blessed to go to a Very Fancy fashion show. And though I felt like a redneck disguised in black velvet and heels....It Was Fabulous! So much fun! And of course Diane and Jared, our wonderful hosts, were so much fun to be around. Thanks to them for being the bestest!