Pots, peak, and pages

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Just a few photos to share what I’ve been up to…

New pots unloaded yesterday!  I’m really psyched about the stacked vases!

Ski week with a trip to the Peak as they hung new prayer flags!

Coloring pages I came up with from the ideas of the GSA student group at our local high school!  Other coloring page designs and recent pots are available on my etsy page!  (I haven’t had a chance to post these pots yet, so keep checking back!)

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Thinking Smaller

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Just over a year ago a few friends joined me in attending my first Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta.  If you ever have a chance to go, please do.  It is one of the most enchanting experiences you may ever have, waking before light to see glowing orbs announce the dawn, then wandering through acres of inflating masses that eventually lift off and fill our yawning skies with rainbows of fire breathing beasts.  No joke, you feel like Alice in Wonderland wandering through oversized mushrooms in all manner of psychedelic patterning.IMG_7582

Taos hosts its own Balloon Fiesta, scaled back, less traffic, a more reasonable hour of the morning, and still an utter delight for all who attend.  Extra easy on the little ones in so many ways makes for a great family event!

It’s also the time of year to build inventory for the holiday push.  The studio rhythm has scaled down, become about making cups, mugs, and bowls in mass quantity, objects ideal for gifting friends and family.IMG_3346

Cowgirls have taken a back seat for the moment, still available in the shop here, on etsy, and at Gallery Mar.  I’m also working with tea-o-graphy to put together the perfect holiday gift of blended teas and your very own one-of-a-kind mug both made here in Taos, New Mexico.  It looks like we’ll be attending a few different events where you can buy these great little gifts, so stay tuned and come on out to see what we’ve come up with!

Download and Watch Full Movie Split (2017)

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Poster Movie Split 2017

Split (2017) HD

Director : M. Night Shyamalan.
Writer : M. Night Shyamalan.
Producer : Mark Bienstock, Jason Blum, M. Night Shyamalan.
Release : January 19, 2017
Country : United States of America.
Production Company : Universal Pictures, Blumhouse Productions, Blinding Edge Pictures.
Language : English.
Runtime : 117 min.
Genre : Horror, Thriller.

‘Split’ is a movie genre Horror, was released in January 19, 2017. M. Night Shyamalan was directed this movie and starring by James McAvoy. This movie tell story about Though Kevin has evidenced 23 personalities to his trusted psychiatrist, Dr. Fletcher, there remains one still submerged who is set to materialize and dominate all the others. Compelled to abduct three teenage girls led by the willful, observant Casey, Kevin reaches a war for survival among all of those contained within him—as well as everyone around him—as the walls between his compartments shatter apart.

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Running from Lions

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I haven’t quite found the research, but it wasn’t the first time I was hearing that my fiancé and I were attempting to accomplish 3 of the most stressful things one can do in life in the next few months.  I’m starting my business here with making pottery and sculptures, we are planning our wedding (as low stress as we can for a guest list of up to 200 people), and in the past month we have been taking steps towards buying a house!  Aunt Julie says our bodies can’t really tell the difference from good excitement and stress… we’re basically “running from hungry lions.”  And, yes, it all seems good and exciting, but it certainly is stressful.

Buying a house has been on our minds for quite a while, flipping through real estate catalogues, trolling websites, eyeing up homes with glowing signs of their agents’ companies, and taking note of all the things we love or hate about the homes we’ve house sat for.  It was all very benign up until last month when we shared a chair lift with our buddies and expressed our interest in buying with a humble budget.  Before we knew it we were meeting with mortgage brokers, visiting the house they owned, other comparable properties, and talking with contractors, real estate agents, and all manner of family and friends for advice and decision making opinions and perspectives.

The house is the right size for what we are looking for, great location, with a little bit of acreage.  It is a funky old adobe with a lot of potential, much of which we think we can draw out ourselves with a little vision and TLC.  Taos ‘Funky’ is a hard one to wrap your mind around if you don’t live in the area.  It can mean anything in the range of unknown foundation and shared well and septic all the way to spray foam roofing and rotting adobes, any of which could result in a money pit or worse!  It’s our first time and we are not yet deterred by anything major.  So far all signs point to go as we do our homework, dot our i’s and cross our t’s.

One more important factor is having a studio on site.  We spoke today with a contractor, and need to make sure all is a go with the town, but if I can have my kiln in the same place as my studio that would be ideal…. for all those potters out there, I transport every piece of greenware to my kiln down the road… a dirt road no less!  For the laymen this means my work is traveling in its most fragile state to be fired and finished, and casualties are a devastating part of that process.

In the meantime, mugs are getting trimmed and handled, sculptures are being envisioned and sketched out, and wedding plans continue to take shape.  Life is an exciting adventure and as we run from hungry lions we are also hoping that we’re heading towards a healthy feast!

My 7 rules for Sticking to It :

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Trying to make it as an artist when your income is just not enough:

This weekend I have the run of Rottenstone Pottery, the local gallery that carries my work.  It’s not our busiest season, so traffic has been scattered and people poke in every now and again during mostly quiet days.  When I sit the gallery I get a little pay for my time, commissions on sales, and can spend time on my own work to my heart’s content.  It’s been over a year since I have taken the leap into the abyss of trying to make it as an artist, left the regularly scheduled world of working for someone else, and taken gigs and odd jobs to try and break even.

I am really lucky for having been offered various steady work waiting tables (my most recent previous form of regular income), and even other full time or part time regular jobs.  In this climate of unemployment and job insecurity, I am not ungrateful, but I know how easy it would be for me to neglect this commitment to myself, to pursue making, if my income is safely tied up in a steady job.  Yes, I realize it is a luxury to be able to live this way, and the choices, and happenstance of my life have allowed this.  I live incredibly humbly with my dear partner who is supportive to no end, in particular, because he has his own dreams for following his creative pursuits outside of the conventional steady job hustle.  He is an English teacher and a poet, New Mexico Charter School Teacher of the Year no less!  He didn’t get there with an easy gig idly minding behaved and head strong students.  He also struggles to support students with no other form of support, add to those, students with inclinations for dangerous forms of rebellion, with additional challenges in the work environment, and I wonder how in the world he is able to do it at all.

Still, he believes in me and takes on the lion’s share of the rent and expenses in our tiny studio apartment because he believes in what I am doing.  Eventually, my craft will make our living and he will take time away to focus on his writing!  For now, I am pushing away in the studio spending more than full time hours to seek a comfortable living and beyond with what I love doing.  In the meantime I take jobs here and there to fill in the gaps of my income, and I have set up some ground rules to keep my head and heart in the studio.  I have gotten a reputation as a good house and animal sitter and often get offered jobs in people’s homes for periods of time.  I also have experience and the credentials for working in restaurants with food and alcohol and I am offered regular appealing work more than I should be lucky enough to receive.  Jobs related directly to my work as a maker I will always consider.  And helping friends out is really important to me as well.  I have had so much help along the way I want to keep paying that forward where I am able.

My rules for staying true to the course:

1.  I don’t take anyone else’s steady jobs with a regular schedule so that I can pick and choose when and where I need to be for my own work, hosting openings, pursuing representation, and promoting.  This is particularly important because in this small town my busiest times of year are also the busiest times of year for most jobs I would take on.

2.  I cover jobs of people that I have worked comfortably with for a long time at rates that work for both of us.  New house sitting and/or animal sitting jobs I make sure work with my schedule and how I value my time.

3.  I don’t get tied to working a regular schedule for someone else’s dream, restaurant or whatever venture, so that I can focus on my own.  The time and energy I invest in building my business as an artist is much more valuable to me.

4.  I take jobs here and there for set specific times on a case by case basis catering or bar tending.  When I am able and the pay is acceptable I take on opportunities and let it be known that I am available for this kind of work.  Word of mouth and reputation from years of waiting tables is how I get these jobs.

5.  I would take a regular schedule with a space representing my work in order to build my understanding of running a gallery and working with customers, something that helps me represent my work, and teaches me the ins and outs if ever I would want to have my own gallery.

6.  I keep a regular vigorous schedule in my studio, making sure I am committing full time plus, and staying late and/or going in early or on weekends to make sure I have given myself those hours.

7.  I appreciate the freedom to adjust accordingly and like to offer my help to friends wherever I can, especially when they don’t have the same luxury.  My friends support me throughout the year, buying, using, and sharing my work, not to mention, welcoming me into their lives and homes.

I know I am lucky to even have the option of considering this type of life, but I have also had the opportunity to choose how humbly I want to live so that I can invest my time, energy, and resources in what is most important to me.  Before this past year I was making a decent living waiting tables with enough to spare for travel, skiing, and working in my studio.  Now I’m trying to have my making take on that responsibility.  Looks like time will tell if that works out or not!  I’ll keep you posted!

Where did January go?

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It’s been a helluva January that went by in a blink, my love got the flu right when we had agreed to take on two housesits on opposite ends of town.  I did the hustle back and forth to get the pups outdoors and exercised while he recovered from a pretty harsh take down that I know many of you can relate to.  In my last post I talked about keeping works in progress in the studio and while I barely made it in here I did pull reclaim buckets and began to reconstitute some creamy white porcelain I’d had sitting around for quite a while.

Though I hadn’t spent much time elbow deep in clay I did enjoy the mass postings of artwork from peers and <a href=" viagra sildenafil citrate.brzozowski.5″>the challenge to go back through my own work and share 3 works a day for 5 days.  Seeing that work I had made and really enjoyed dredged up the desire to make functional and sculptural porcelain pieces again.  While my clay slowly comes back to a workable state I have pinched together a few cups and threw out slabs for slump plates and bowls.  The sculptures are coming together in my mind’s eye and I am looking to pick up a few more boxes of this porcelain and see what happens!

A little on process

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A wise potter once told me (and a class of other workshop attendees) to always have works in progress waiting for you in the studio, it will be sure to get you in to work the next day and everyday.  I try to keep this in mind.  Even with a few weeks away with the family over the holidays, a great time to hit the reset button, allow clay works to dry out, clean the slate, rearrange, and start fresh, I have paintings in progress, tea sets waiting for their cups, sewing projects cut and ready to be finished, and clay sculptures in mind for my return.Watch Full Movie Online Streaming Online and Download

Rarely do I have a sculpture project I can complete from start to finish in one day.  More complex forms, like independent arms, or forms that have a more dramatic bend in the body, require drying time to harden with the right amount of integrity to support the piece.  Thanks to the dry high desert climate, things can dry a little faster here in Taos, than, say in the Everglades, but it’s a fine line.  Let your work dry too much and you don’t have the freedom to reshape a portion you may not be happy with later.  With clay we have a wonderful material that we can allow to dry and rewet later, and a myriad of options when it comes to working the material at various stages, but there is a certain amount of timing and understanding that comes with experience to work in this medium.

People often ask, “how long did it take you to make that?”  I know they want to know how long it took to sculpt, or form a single piece, not considering drying time, multiple firings, and finish work, but even with that in mind, most laymen don’t consider the development of an idea, the experimentation, the trial and error of learning the craft, nor the pulling together of thoughts and ideas that will later defend our works in artist statements and hopefully posterity.  Some peers even answer by saying it took them their whole lives to make that piece, and in a sense, it did!

December Whirlwind!

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Plans are in place for a whirlwind of events this month, and maybe I’ll fit some ski days in there somewhere too!  It’s the day before our Holiday Sale and Party at our little Community Center, and as always with all the events planned for the month of December, our Party overlaps with other happenings in our neighborhood.  This time it’s the Taos Festival of Trees a, great event benefiting a wealth of local charities.  We hope our friends find time to make it both events!

So for a little more shameless self promotion, we’ve brought in Chef Antoine to prepare a spread of complimentary hors d’oeuvres and refreshments viagra super active.   Our friends at the Farm House Cafe will have a table of locally sourced treats available for sale.  Artist, Anee Ward, will have a lovely collection of paintings, prints, gift cards, and watercolors.  Claire Blanchard with the Tufted Chair has decorated the hall with oversized ornaments and put together a collection of great holiday gifts along with her exquisite home furnishings.  And guest artist Lilli Steinlicht will display her textured hanging planters and other ceramic pieces!

As for me?  I just unloaded a kiln of lovely pots that make great gifts and even a few new cowgirls too!  The new pots will be available at our party tomorrow, then again at Substance of Taos‘s annual Winter White Sale, and of course as soon as I get the listings together, on Etsy too!

Wishing you all a warm and wonderful holiday season as we look forward to a fun and successful Holiday Party!

Let the December Games Begin!


Holiday Pottery Gifts

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MugsThe great thing about working in clay is that it is so versatile, you can transition from figurative sculptures to cups and bowls that make great holiday gifts!  While we are still experiencing our November Lull, I have been fortunate enough to grab some odd jobs to keep the bills paid, and to score some little sales here and there.  I just sent out a few mugs from my etsy shop and have posted some new pieces on there as well!

In the meantime, November has been my time to hover over my wheel and produce a kiln full of sweet mugs, cups, bowls, jars, and vases for the holiday gifting season.  The lower price point is a great way to make some sales and get people in the door.  So here I am building inventory for our December 5th Open Studio event complete with decorations, refreshments, and plenty of shopping!

I am lucky to have my studio in the cozy little village of Arroyo Seco, NM just outside of Taos.  The charming shops and businesses probably only cover a stretch of 100 yds or so, maybe even less?  and we feature two pottery galleries and of course now my little studio space here in this old elementary school classroom.

Both the Scott potters have great little businesses and produce tons of beautiful handmade pieces for all the guests that come through.  I simply can’t produce that much, but I’m lucky to have these guys as mentors and friends.  Rottenstone Pottery even features some of my pots and sculptures!

So if you’re in the neighborhood this December 5, come by from 5:30-8:30 and join in our little holiday celebration and sale!  If you can’t make it then, just get in touch and we’ll find a time to come by!