The Lucy Fagella Pottery Blog is where I share the how the pottery is made. Pottery process is a beautiful thing… watching a pot rise up from a lump of clay at the wheel, or seeing a work table filled with freshly thrown pieces. This blog focuses on process shots, pottery videos, the work table at the end of the day, and some finished work fresh from the kiln.
Catherine tip-toed through the storms from Virgina all the way to Western Massachusetts. It seems that every Tuesday/ Wednesday for the past three weeks we have been having a snow storm. Thankfully Catherine was able to make it here, and back to Virginia before this current storm!
The Asparagus Valley Potters Guild is a group of professional potters. Every year or so we invite a ceramic artist/potter from outside our area to teach us a little bit about pottery. This particular workshop was very exciting for all of us because it was a hands on workshop. Catherine gave demos, and we got to play with paints, clay and slips! To be in a room with 16 other professional ceramic artists all creating separately, yet to together in one room was awesome to say the least!
If you haven’t seen Catherine’s blog by now go check it out. She is known is the blog world for her inspiring posts which focus on the Winter and Summer Solstice. In her blog she shares her paintings, clay work and wonderful photography, and of course her writing… her site is truly inspirational. Her workshop was also.
The Asparagus Valley Potters Guild sponsored a hands on workshop by Catherine White this weekend. All I can say right now is that it was great! I’m too tired tonight, but many pics to share in the next few days!
The morning weather report… 15 below zero. By the time my sons were waiting for the bus it was a balmy minus 10!
I got into the studio by 9:00 and did everything I could to avoid wedging the cold clay. I did paper work, and loaded a bisque kiln. My fellow potter friend Tom White called. He was doing the same as me… everything to avoid the cold clay. He said his throwing buckets had ice on the top of the water! Tom and I both have nice finished studios, mine a renovated barn, with my chickens living below my studio. I have a very nice wood pellet stove, so technically it should be fairly warm… but it took hours to warm today.
Well by 10:00 I faced the clay. As I wedged my clay my hands became numb. After ten minutes I held them under warm water to defrost, they tingled for another ten minutes. So I came back in the house frozen, and ate another warm blueberry muffin (that I made specifically to help warm the house), and had a cup of tea.
Got back in the studio and finally threw for a couple of hours. These past two weeks between snow storms, snow days with kids, and freezing arctic air, is paradoxically reminding of a heat wave in the summer. When there is a heat wave everything seems to stop. I’m feeling the same way, my body is having such a hard time getting in sync with this weather extreme. The amount of work that is getting done is very similar… a snail’s pace. It all just reminds me that we are not ultimately in control.
It’s always a juggling act to be working full time at home, with kids. Today the challenge was a little more on the fun side of it though. The interruption was not to drive a teenager to a doctors appointment, or to practice… today it was to cross-country ski with them, or to continue making butter keepers. The choice as always, in parenting… compromise. I made half the amount of butter keepers I planned on making, and skied half the amount of time they wanted me to! We were all happy… until we had to shovel the nearly two feet of snow!
The last two issues of Ceramics Monthly featured articles on Potter Moms, in the Studio Visit section. The December issue visited with Elizabeth Robinson, and January visited with Jennifer Mecca. Both of these Mom potters are doing fairly well for themselves. Yet, both of these women have pretty much cut their studio time to about half of what they did before kids. As I read about them, I thought about other potter moms I know, and all I thought was… it gets easier. It was not that long ago that I could barely work with two little toddlers running around, constant mommy, mommy. Now the interruptions are less and less, or they are more planned interruptions. Like going to basketball games, or doctor’s appointments.
As my boys get older they have become so respectful of my working time, and they understand it’s how they have a nice home, and food on the table. They are 13 and 15 years old now, and it seems my main job as a mom is feeding them, then driving them to friends, or school functions, and practices… and then feeding them again!
As my elderly friend says… motherhood… just a little interruption in time. I’m beginning to see what she means by it. It really does go by fast.
Oh, and then there are the butter keepers!
Betterfly.com… a new thing out there on the world wide web… or maybe it’s old by now, and I’m just catching up! (The site was launched May 2010!) Well I just set up my Betterist page on betterfly.com! It seems like a pretty cool site if your a ceramics teacher, or any kind of individualized teacher for that matter… like yoga, fitness, dance, even math tutoring!
Just type in ceramics at the top search box and you get a whole list of teachers. You can narrow down your search to state, and distance. It’s like a website for your classes, with a calendar, and as much of a description as you want to include for your classes. You can even post videos, and photo’s.
Check out their history here.
Oh, and speaking of classes. The winter classes here at www.luciapottery.com begin Jan. 11th. Only two openings left for the winter session, and that would be for Tuesday nights.
Ok… so the Open Studio/Holiday Sale is over, and was a great success… now it’s time for that neglected etsy shop. Time, time, time… just need a lot more of it!
There have been some great reads on other potter’s blogs about etsy, namely John Bauman and Ron Philbeck . I really like the idea of etsy… it is just a new kind of work to me… taking lots of photo’s, being a little bit of a story-teller in describing my pottery, and last but not least, listing, and re-listing, and re-listing again. I think it’s just the learning curve. I will eventually do it with ease.
Take a look at my foodieceramics etsy shop here! I’m having a sale… FREE SHIPPING in the U.S!!
This weekend is my Open Studio/Holiday Sale… actually fellow Greenfield potter, and friend, Tiffany Hilton and I decided to have our sales the same weekend… We figured why not advertise together, put our mailing lists together for the post card, and call it a tour. So I sent in some information to the local paper and called it, ” A Tour of Two Potters” ( kinda catchy, huh) well the paper obviously liked it, and wrote a nice blurb using that as the title, with a subtitle, “Two excellent Greenfield potters” – along with a photo of my teapots in process! Oh and speaking of blurbs… the December issue of Ceramics Monthly gave the, “Homegrown for the Table” show at Pinch in Northampton a little write-up, with a photo of my work!
Here is a taste of what you will see at my studio this weekend!
Wooo-hooo! … a nice kiln firing with teapots. Here are the teapots glazed, and ready for the firing… and 32 hours later, barely cool enough to take out of the kiln!
Yes, these will be available at this weekend’s Holiday Open Studio Sale!