Please join me on Saturday for an Outdoor Sale with other Westwood Artists. The Outdoor Sale on Saturday, September 26th is from 10-2 at 6 Fisher Street in Westwood.
Featured artists: Lisa WB Walker – pottery; Carol Ahearn – watercolors; Karen Cagan – photography; Jane Wojick – pottery; Kevin Becker – glass; Rita Bechara – paintings.
This is a social distanced sale. Everyone will be required to wear a mask and maintain 6 feet from other shoppers. There will be hand sanitizer on site should you wish to interact with the art.
If you would like to purchase handmade from me but are unable or uncomfortable attending an in person event, please have a look at my new pottery here on my flickr account Just email me for prices and I can either package your paid purchases to pick up at the event, my home studio in Westwood or make other arrangements for contactless purchases, including shipping pottery.
If you are attending, I will have new work in addition to a few sale specials to make room for future work in my studio (this is not a seconds sale, but price reductions in some older pieces).
As I watch the cities and towns turn from green to yellow, I’m reminded that patience is important. I miss being in the classroom; I miss the closeness that comes from sitting opposite a student and pulling a pot up together; I miss the close interaction with a child who is frustrated and needs a helping hand; I miss so much that this pandemic has forced us to press pause on.
The upside of pressing pause and rethinking how to teach has provided new opportunities for personal growth and adding technical tools to my teaching regime. This can only be a good thing. Here are some of the teaching opportunities available to students of all ages.
“The sales tax holiday for 2020 will occur on August 29 and 30. Retail items of up to $2,500, purchased in Massachusetts for personal use on these two days, will be exempt from sales tax.” YES! That means …. shop and support your local businesses.
Legislation was signed into law in 2018 that established an annual sales tax holiday for one weekend each year. This year, the sales tax holiday will occur on August 29 and August 30, 2020. On the sales tax holiday weekend, purchases by individuals of most retail items are not subject to the state sales tax.
Who qualifies for the sales tax holiday? The sales tax holiday applies to individuals purchasing retail items for personal use only.
What about internet sales? Do those sales qualify for the sales tax holiday exemption? Yes. If you order and pay for an eligible item over the internet on the sales tax holiday, Eastern Daylight Time, that item will qualify for the sales tax holiday exemption. No sales tax is due on that purchase, even if delivery of the item occurs after the sales tax holiday weekend.
Do all retailers have to participate in the sales tax holiday? Yes. All businesses normally making taxable sales of tangible property in Massachusetts or to purchasers in Massachusetts that are open for business on August 29 and 30 must participate in the sales tax holiday, including internet vendors.
Please support local businesses and take advantage of this tax free holiday in Massachusetts #ShopLocalMA.
When you can’t host a sale for customers, the next best thing is a private video tour of new work. I set up a sale on my back porch and using my phone, give a talk (make sure the volume is on and up!) about my new summer collection and spring Barbados Collection. As all the sales I planned for were canceled, it has been since February when I have had the opportunity to share my vision for the work that I am creating. All pieces are for sale and can be purchased directly from me. I provide contactless buying options, curbside pick up, delivery and shipping. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss any of the work.
Last week marked the start of virtual hand building classes on Zoom. Oh how I have missed interacting with students and teaching clay to adults! In week one of a two part workshop, we worked on a coil pot; part two will feature hand built fruit to sit in the bowl. In this class, students can use real clay and have been given the opportunity to have it fired. All this is happening at Mother Brook Arts in Dedham. A new group of classes will be ready for sign ups soon. Click here for more information on Mother Brook Arts ceramics program. I will be offering one, two and three day workshops.
The COVID19 Pandemic and quarantine impacted my art. My ceramic homes represent my neighborhood.
One of my neighbors, a nurse, organized a “first responders” event in April. She emailed neighbors to ask for help in recognizing the health care workers in “Cloverland” (the name we use when referring to our Westwood, MA neighborhood). She asked for money to purchase restaurant gift cards for these families, to create signs of support, and help to decorate these homes with lawn signs, chalk signs and balloons. It was a huge success!
In the middle of July, some of these signs are still standing – through hard rain and wind storms – just like these health care workers. It takes a village… and my art reflects this life that is.
Who says you can’t learn about the amazing world of ceramics virtually? I’ve just finished up a week of teaching pottery in a virtual camp to young students. We’ve had some clay projects and some 2 and 3D paper projects to explore ceramics and how they teach us about different cultures. The above screenshot of middle school students’ artwork shows the beautiful designs they came up with as they imagined themselves creating tiles in Florence, Italy during the Italian Renaissance period. Using the medium of their choice on paper, they emulated decorating a tin based white slip covered earthenware tile to learn about majolica. They also learned how trade from Spain brought the process to the country and the way it functioned in society.
If you live in my neighborhood, you might have seen me working away out in my garage. It’s where my kiln is and a great place to be when the weather is warm and the clay is low fire brown. I’ve just managed to fill my kiln to run a bisque fire for the first time this season. The pandemic really affected my creativity and I’ve just started to emerge from quarantine with ideas for some new work. Stay tuned for class updates, pottery to purchase and a lot more blog posts!
Teaching teens pottery is a different experience from teaching elementary aged students even though there may be only a small age difference. Teens in middle and high school have had many more life experiences. They have acquired more creative tools. Their work has time to develop with a daily interaction with clay. Here is a look at what they created in our week long class this summer.
Teens explored building castles using coils and slabs. From left to right: clay is used to create buildings; castles are glazed in bright colors; artwork is finished with a glaze firing in the pottery kiln. Below are a few more finished pieces.
Once the students were familiar with architecture, they started their second project: architectural tiles.
The results were very unique and exciting to see. Starting with a clay slab, the students used their imagination to take the next steps. They then moved on to glazing and the tiles were fired.
For the final project, the students created a functional piece. They began with a flat two-dimensional slab of clay and turned it into a three dimensional mug. The theme was animals but some decided to move away from topic and create an original piece.
It’s always a great experience to teach clay for Newton Community Education! Check out my poston what the elementary aged students created during their weeks of summer pottery class.
I had a great summer teaching pottery to kids in grades 2-5. They were fun and creative and seemed to really enjoy the experience of working with clay. Here’s a look at some of the projects we worked on in Week 1.
Coral Reefs: before with wet clay and after with colorful glazes.
Here is a look at the projects we worked on in Week 2:
Pinch pot animals, sea creatures or fish (and the cookie monster!)
Covered jars in the form of a favorite dessert.
It’s always a great experience to teach clay for Newton Community Education! Check out my next post on what the teens created during their week of summer pottery class.