Hi everyone! So this week is going to be fun, crazy, and really busy! I leave for NCECA (national council on education for the ceramic arts... that is a mouthful) clay conference in Tampa, Florida on Tuesday and will be back home by Sunday. I will be posting about my trip sometime next week (not messing with the laptop). For now I have to pack and get ready for my trip! Have a great week and I will be back (hopefully a little tanner) next week!
Sometimes you come across something that just touches your heart, and even brings tears to your eyes. Recently I was introduced to a design blog that really caught by eye by a friend and photographer Kara Mercer. Promise Tangeman created her website and thus I was introduced to her blog and website. Through Promise's website I have now been introduced to Kate and her story. She is a beautiful little girl that is battling brain cancer. I don't know Promise or Kate or her family, but her story made me cry just looking at the pictures, the website, and blog her family has to reach out to strangers asking for prayers. Read her story, and if you are a believer in Christ, pray and ask for healing miracles for this little girl.
On the same note, I have a friend, David, that is battling lung cancer. We found out in September 2010 that he had stage four lung cancer. I also ask that you include him in your prayers for healing and miracles.
Their stories, although different, put life in perspective for me. The ups and downs in life that I have gone through are nothing to their stories.
Every time I get a vacation from school and work, I turn into Super Kendra, (well at least I try). I write an overambitious to do list that includes everything from cleaning, lots of art, to sprucing up old furniture and plans for my patio garden. This spring break was no different, thus the reason for no updates at all last week. I started with my closet and even if I did not start my yoga (that was on my to-do list); my closet got in shape and got skinny. Even the hangers lost weight!
A little background on my apartment, I live in 586sqft (one bedroom, one bath) with my younger sister and my cat Ziggy. My sister lives in the dining room and we are both artist, meaning lots of supplies and projects everywhere! Thankfully the apartment had a fairly large walk in closet that we could share. I had downsized from a much bigger two bedroom to the one bedroom about a year before my sister moved in. So basically lots of stuff crammed into a one bedroom and then added my sister.
The closet was first on my list because of a mess we had back during the deep freeze. We had squishy carpet from a leak in the bathroom. A majority of our clothes, shoes and other junk stored in our closet was strewed around the apartment for several days (felt like weeks), while a fan that was strong enough to be on a movie set blocked half my bedroom to dry out the carpet. Needless to say, my apartment was in some dire need for some super cleaning action.
I took all of my clothes out of the closet, tried a majority of them on and donated all of the clothes I didn’t need anymore. I was surprised of things I had kept and knowing I didn’t have room for them… cut, they were in the donate pile. I reorganized all of my clothes by color (easier on the eye when looking into a crowed closet space) and fell in love with some hangers my mom had given me. They are non-slip, super skinny (I told you my hangers lost weight) and actually opened up some room. I will be getting more of these as soon as I get the chance!
The closet was the biggest project I had for spring cleaning, although my sister and I did hit the rest of the apartment pretty hard and got a lot done!! It is a good thing we did, because we started our week back to class with her going to the ER. Well it started with her going down to the school wellness center and her telling the nurse she had some pain in her lower abdominal area. He recommended that she go ahead and go to the ER and not wait to see the doctor. Her thought was… I could fit that in on Saturday. He finally got through to her that she needed to go get some homework, grab a friend and sit at the ER and find out what was going on.
Even after all of this, I’m still unsure if we need to go to the ER because she is not acting like she is in a lot of pain. We packed a picnic for the ER (I didn’t know how long we were going to be up there), both of us grabbed a book, sketch book, I grabbed the laptop, and we headed around the corner to the ER. It was several hours before they even got her back in a room to see a doctor. Long story short, it’s a good thing we went because she had to have her appendix removed. She is recovering now, in pain, but good spirits! I want to thank everyone who already knew for the thoughts and prayers! That’s the story for now… hopefully I can catch up on my blogging (also on my to-do list, having some ready to post)!
Get a behind the scenes look at how I go from inspiration to a finished work of art. Feel free to ask questions, I will include them in the next segment! Enjoy!
Where does your inspiration come from?
My inspiration comes from all around me, my environment. I walk through the gardens on campus and will see a new plant or texture that I want to incorporate into my work. I keep a portfolio of ideas that I rip out of magazines as a reference in my art library. The past year or so, I begin to pray about my art, all aspects of it. My prayers are answered at different times, sometimes I will go to bed and in the morning when I am not quiet awake I will have three or four answers to my prayer, and other times it might be months before I get an answer. Praying about my work has been the best thing I could have ever done, my ideas are running over!
You have an idea... now what?
Sometimes the "now what" is the biggest hurdle to take inspiration to creation. I typically start with a sketch or two. I prefer pen and my drawings are usually very rough and gesture like. I also do alot of writing, such as how I plan to approach the sculpture, coil, slab, newspaper form, solid to hollow out, into my sketchbook. I also jot down what texture tools I will use, if I am including text on the piece I will write that as well.
Where do you work best?
Every artist approaches their work with their own personal flair. I have seen some that work best if it is quite and no one is around, some blair music and others paint to the sound of the snow on an old t.v. set. I prefer to work to movies. I work best to movies such as Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings since they run over 2 hours long although I will watch anything in my collection. Now I can only work to movies I have seen or heard a million times, new movies I get very distracted and end up watching instead of working!
Do you have a favorite tool?
Right now I am creating alot of organic texture, so my favorite tools have been my needle tool, exacto knife, a double sided tool that has two sizes of rounded scoops (not sure what it is called) and an assortment of paint brushes. Although, I recently purchased a set of bowl scrapers from Target that come in bright colors at a great price! I might have to write a fav. products review on them!
Well that is all for todays Q & A! If you have any questions, please ask and I will include them in Part 2 of Behind the Scenes: from Inspiration to the Finished Work of Art.
Where did this week go? It is a mystery to me that the weekend is practically here! Here are some highlights of this past week.
1. Attended Beauty & the Beast at the theater over the weekend! Gorgeous sets, makes me want to create something that looks like it came out of a story book!
2. Finished one of the sea pods to enter into the Texas Tech juried student show
3. Worked on 10 collabrative junk sculptures in mixed media
4. My new business cards came in!!
5. My new books from amazon came in... one of them is about high fired glazes!
6. Threw a bowl I actually liked
7. Did some image transfers on ceramic pendants
8. Plus the sun has been out the past two days so I have pulled out my sun dresses and flip flops!
Now I know today is Thursday, but with all that has been going on this week, there wasn't anything new for a sneak peek, but check back next Thursday to see what surprises I have up my sleeves!
Tomorrow is going to be extremely busy, but if you are in Lubbock you should stop by the 3-D Art Annex on campus at Texas Tech. The clay club will be participating in a throw-a-thon from 10 am until 5 pm to create as many bowls as we can for the Empty Bowls coming up April 16th. There will also be demos in the metals/jewelry studio and other demos/sales at the art building. Tomorrow night will be the reception for BFA studio seniors exhibition in the Landmark Art Gallery in the art building on campus from 5-7. Everyone is welcome to come, meet some talented student artist and enjoy some refreshments.
This weeks sneak peek is of wine stained necklace pendants I am experimenting with. A friend of mine, Amy, actually gave me the idea of seeing what happens with a bisqued piece of clay (fired once) and wine. I had already designed and fired these new organic pendants and on Monday, realized I had a bottle of wine that no one liked that was going to get thrown out.
I used a cabernet sauvignon and will be curious to see what wines will create different shades. The first one I did, I painted the wine on a few times. The next one was put into a glass of wine and soaked for 30 minutes or so and the other two I let soak for 36 hours. The black marks on those two I am assuming were a chemical reaction between the clay and the wine, but who knows for sure. I'm an artist not a scientist, although playing with chemicals in the glaze lab is fun! Have a great weekend! I will be back on Monday!
After today's class critique, I am going to get my interactive book ready to travel. The hope and goal is that the book will be written in and passed onto a friend, family member, a stranger in the coffee house ect... and filled up. I am going to add an envelope that holds cards with TWLOHA website on it to take away. Once the book gets back to me, I will type up excerpts from the book to my blog. This experience reminds me of the stuff animal in grade school every kid got to take home one weekend from school, and how we wrote about his adventures. It is the same kind of interaction of sharing and passing around an object and hopefully making a difference in someones life. I realize that it a HUGE goal but it is the thing I think about. If the book doesn't come your way, I hope you email (email@example.com) me your story so I can add it in. Everyone's story, BIG or small is important. What's Your Story?
This will be short and sweet! Every friday morning I go and teach two mommy & me art classes. This week both classes did bubble wrap paintings with cool colors (and no... they were not totaly cool or awesome colors, but blues and greens.) Even with the little ones we are working on some basic art terminology and even a little color theory. I describe cool colors as water or ice colors and warm colors as fire colors and use the two descriptions while we work. This is such a fun project to do with two years old and up. All the moms helped paint on the bubble wrap and together they flip it over onto the paper... tap, tap, tap and then pull back to see the imprint. The first time the kids pull it back, each child got really big eyes of surprise and usually a big smile. It's a little messy and most of my moms had more paint on them than the kids, but a lot of fun! This project can grow and change with the child for a few years, browns and greens could make a turtle to be cut out, different size bubble wrap could be used, or like the ones we did today will be our backdrop for the fish we color, cut and glue next week. I will post pictures next week of this great kid project. I didn't have my camera with me today. Have a great weekend and I hope you do something creative!
This weeks sneak peek is a look at an interactive sculpture using text. The inspiration behind this piece is a message very close to my heart. For the past two years I have been wanting to create something that addresses suicide and the pain those around suffer and then I thought, what if I could address this issue like TWLOHA organization does. So I am creating an interactive sculpture that will get people to think, write, and read each other's stories. Everyone's story BIG or small is important.
For those of you not familar with TWLOHA,( To Write Love on Her Arms)" is a non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury and suicide. TWLOHA exists to encourage, inform, inspire and also to invest directly into treatment and recovery." ~Mission Statement
They also are there for people that have lost family and friends to suicide. I encourage you to go and check out their vision statement and website.
So this sculpture will tell people's stories, introduce TWLOHA, and hopefully open up conversations between friends, family, and strangers. If you are interested in telling your story and will not be able to physically write in my book, feel free to handwrite and scan or type your story and then email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. There are no rules or limitations it can be short and sweet or as many pages as you like, just be honest. Remember everyone's story is important. What's Your Story?
Hi everyone! I just wanted to share a link today. The video on the page is about 10 minutes long and has some great tips for adding texture to thrown pottery. If you are an artist, go check it out and if you are not go learn something new about ceramics! I hope you enjoy!
click here to view Fong Choo's texture demo
the not so starving artist blog:
Here's the deal... I am an artist and I love food! I refuse to be labeled or included in the "starving artist" category. Now, while I have been broke... I want to be an artist and eat my cake too (metaphorically and literally!)
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