Kids Clay

kids, teaching

I have had the great opportunity to spend an afternoon once a week for the last 14 weeks with a group of 1-3rd graders to teach them about clay.  Here is a look at some of my favorite pieces from the semester…  This week is our final one and the children will see their glazed pieces and have their own art opening! This is my favorite day 🙂

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pinch pots with lids

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coiling

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mobiles from slab with a prompt: “to hang in your room”

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butterflies with texture

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themed projects – animals

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form and function with slab and coil

“Art is as natural as sunshine and as vital as nourishment.” -MaryAnn F. Kohl

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Still Life / Life Still

artist challenge, shop local

A special exhibition hosted at the Dedham Community Theatre by the Dedham Square Artist Guild opens tonight in Dedham Square.  The exhibit features work by Guild members, local artists, teachers and students who responded to the artist challenge: Still Life / Life Still.  Tonight’s opening reception (THURSDAY, MAY 5th 6-8 PM) will include  refreshments; artists will be on hand to meet and discuss their work.

Still Life / Life Still
Explore still life in a traditional approach by studying objects arranged in a balanced composition; or, where objects are caught in their natural surroundings and documented. Show us how you see still life / life still.

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Still Life of Peppers. Handmade objects to be arranged in a pleasing composition. My peppers began as pinch pots with coils.

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Adding color with bright low fire glazes.

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clear glaze for an extra shiny surface.

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fresh out of the kiln and looking good enough to eat!

This exhibition will be up through the end of June. All artwork is for sale through the Dedham Square Artist Guild, including my one of a kind set of hand sculpted peppers.

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This painting by Guild member Matt Miller is also in the show.  Perhaps I was influenced? This happens when you surround yourself with beautiful art by talented friends 🙂

Spring Open Studios

Open Studios Show and Sale

Potters Place, a not for profit school and cooperative studio, opens it’s doors for Open Studio Weekend with an Artists’ Reception on Friday, April 29th from 5:30-9 PM.

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Doors open again on Saturday, April 30th at 9am with a “less than perfect” table and afternoon demonstrations by a number of the 23 Potters Place artisans.  Shop til 8pm for Mother’s Day and Wedding gifts!

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On Sunday, doors open at 10am and the countdown is on for our coveted raffle.  Master potter, Susan Brum created a large vase and all members of the Potters Place studio have signed the bottom.  Raffle money and sales from a select group of pottery raise funds and awareness about our choice charity: Kettlebells4kids. Shop our vast and unique selection of pottery,  watch more demonstrations and sign up for a class (spring session starts May 2nd!) until doors close at 4pm.

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I will be featuring a new collection for spring that was inspired by a winter weekend with childhood friends.  The collection features the pottery needed for our ladies lunch.  The surface decorated in the colors of the ocean, dotted with fresh growth and a lattice that is symbolic of the friendships that support and guide our growth. More images can be found by clicking on the “flickr” link to the right.

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Please join me at my cooperative studio: Potters Place in Walpole, Ma to celebrate all we are as we invite you into a place that will show customers “How We Make It”.

Community Outreach

kids, teaching, techniques

Potters Place is a not for profit pottery school and a cooperative studio for clay artisans. Located in Walpole, Massachusetts, it is interwoven into the community it has called home for over 30 years. Their mission is to spread their love of pottery.  This takes many forms from raising funds through the sale of specific pottery (most recently to benefit the League School art program) to going into schools with clay to enrich the students.

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The students who transition from elementary to middle school annually work on a tile project that celebrates their interests and leaves a lasting artifact. Completed tiles are hung on the wall and students are able to stop in and see them years later.

Working with the art teachers, Potters Place instructors provide real clay to students. Showing them ways to make their two dimensional drawings into three dimensional tiles with coils, incising, scratch and attach with slip method, and more.

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Adding color with glaze is the second phase where the students add details to their tiles.

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Parents are always interested in getting involved in this project.  We welcome them to the Potters Place studio where they put on the final glaze before the tiles go into the kiln.

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When the tiles are finished, Potters Place delivers them to the school and they are framed and hung on the wall.  The students are thrilled to see their very own tiles for years to come!

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Find out more about Potters Place in Walpole, MA by clicking over to the webpage at www.pottersplace.info

 

Kids Clay

teaching

“Art, like play, helps children to understand their world. But art goes beyond play, enabling them to express their personal experiences and fantasies in ways that are concrete and compelling, even when they are unable to articulate the events in words” Nancy Beal, The Art of Teaching Art to Children

Today is the last pottery class of the session I have with my elementary aged students. Here are a few of my favorite pieces to illustrate how they expressed themselves with the tools I taught them.

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pinch pot Jack O’Lantern

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Start with a pinch pot, pinch and pull it into something Halloween -y ~ guess who dressed up as a witch on a broomstick?!

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Have fun with coils and learn scratch and attach with slip

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Tiles from start to finish – tile cut slab, add/subtract clay, surface decoration

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Let’s make our favorite animals ~ walrus (make them hollow so they won’t blow up in the kiln!)

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What does winter mean to you ?This student used coils to make a christmas tree and added colorful presents.

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Functionality of pottery ~ a tray for cookies!

 

More art instruction ~ class- one day, class – multiple days

The Art of Wedging

techniques

Wedging is a necessary part of wheel throwing.  Thank goodness I love it!

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spiral wedge

A potter wedges clay by hand to force out trapped air, align clay particles and prepare for wheel throwing. Wedging is similar to kneading bread.

The techniques for wedging clay are called spiral (pictured above), Rams head (pictured below), and wire slab wedging.

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Rams head wedge

Rams head wedging is ideal for smaller amounts of clay and easy for small hands.  Larger amounts of clay are easier wedged using the spiral technique.

For those with wrist issues, like carpal tunnel. the wire slab technique is ideal.  Ceramics Daily has a great article with more information.  Click here.

Watching a demonstration is far more valuable then reading it, so I recommend watching these utube videos by master potters about wedging and preparing your clay: Bill van Gilder  and Simon Leach

 ******* Count to 100 with each ball of clay that you wedge 🙂 *******

 

Potters Place Holiday Show & Sale

Open Studios Show and Sale

Potters Place Holiday Show and Sale will feature my new work: Family Dinners ~A Traveling Series.

My family traveled to Europe this past summer. We took in many sights including art museums, monuments and the natural beauty of many countries. Mealtime discussions were about what we were seeing and doing; and, what we were eating and drinking. We ate and drank what was traditional and local to that region of that country: Gnocchi in Venice, Italy; Tiramisu in Florence, Italy; Moules Frites in Nice, France; and, Jamon Serrano in Barcelona, Spain.

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Breakfast at the Baglioni (Florence, Italy)

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Lunch on the Grand Canal (Venice, Italy)

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Dinner at a Cafe (Nice, France)

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Tapas (Barcelona, Spain)

Stop in to see my new work this weekend at Potters Place Holiday Show and Sale. The opening reception is open to the public on Friday, November 20th from 5:30pm to 9pm.  Hours on Saturday, November 21st are 9am to 8pm.  Hours on Sunday, November 22nd are 10am-4pm.  Parking and admission are free.  Credit cards are accepted.

Potters Place is a cooperative studio with 20 clay artisans.  It is also a pottery school that offers classes in many levels by experienced instructors.  The location is at 127B Old West Street in Walpole, MA – accessible by MBTA. Open studio sales take place twice a year: November and May.

 

 

Powisset Farm Pottery Sale

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This Saturday, I will be selling my functional handmade pottery alongside Susan Brum of Hog Wild Pottery at the lovely Powisset Farm. We will be set up in the Powisset Farm barn… you can’t miss it when you turn off at 37 Powisset Road in Dover, MA.  The big barn door opens at 10:00 AM and closes at 5:00 PM.

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In the barn, CSA members will be collecting their vegetable shares; visitors to the farm may purchase local produce in the farm stand.  This week there are local apples and the first of the fall choices: acorn squash! The two together will made a delicious meal.  The farm stand also includes local honey, breads, cheese, welsh cakes, and hand towels by Lucy Two Shoes – just to name a few.  There is a freezer filled with pork, chicken and meats all locally sourced.  Crescent Ridge milk and ice cream plus local farm eggs are welcome additions.

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Two piece bowl and platter by Hog Wild Pottery

Dark blue prelude mugs by Lisa WB Walker

Dark blue prelude mugs by Lisa WB Walker

The farm to table approach to living is simple and easy when you have a farm like Powisset where the farmers are friendly, the food is local and varied by season, and the community is cherished.  Pottery is the handmade “ingredient” that holds your food and makes your experience complete. One of a kind, user friendly, created within 5 miles of the food that will go on it and in it: that’s farm to table.

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It is always a great day when we sell pottery at the farm! See you Saturday!

“Casting Shadows”: a dedham square artist guild challenge and art exhibit

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“Cast a light onto an object and a shadow is born. They are revealed in the physical world as well as the spiritual one. What is lurking in those shadows is made known through the imagination.”

This Challenge was open to all artists, working in any medium, who work/reside in eastern Massachusetts. This show is in the lower gallery at the Dedham Community Theatre at 580 High Street, Dedham, MA. http://www.dedhamcommunitytheatre.com Opening Reception: Thursday May 7, 6pm to 8pm Exhibition Dates: May 1, 2015 to June 30, 2015.

I responded to this theme in ceramics and here are the pieces that are included in this exhibit amongst photography, paintings and fiber works of art.

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A 2 part luminary with leaf motif casts shadows when a candle is lit.

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A repeating image of a flower and it’s cast shadow cover half of this two tone black and white vase.

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Inspired by the work of Gustavo Perez, this sculpture began on the wheel as a thrown cylinder and was then altered, rolled, pushed, pulled and cut to create spaces for shadows to be cast.  The interior has been painted with a black glossy glaze to further separate the spaces of interior and exterior.

All work is for sale through the Dedham Square Artist Guild gallery.

Potters Place Spring Show & Sale ~ May 1, 2, 3

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Please join me and the 23 Potters Place clay artisans at our cooperative studio’s annual spring show and sale!

Potters Place, 127B Old West Street, Walpole, Massachusetts

Friday, May 1, 6pm to 9pm
Saturday, May 2, 9am to 8pm
Sunday, May 3, 10am to 4pm

We’ll have hundreds of beautiful, hand-crafted, one-of-a kind pottery items available. The theme is “Spring Brings New Beginnings” and our Chairperson is Jeannette McGillicuddy, Co-Chairperson is Gay Calo. This Spring our potters will be donating special pieces and the proceeds will be given to the Animal Protection Center of Southeastern Massachusetts (APCSM). A Meet-the-Artists reception takes place Friday evening, where you can enjoy refreshments & meet the 23 featured Potters Place artisans. Free admission & parking are available and we accept credit & debit cards.

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Potters Place Member Pottery photographed by Dave Bradley. Lisa WB Walker “Prelude” vase is back left piece.

More about Potters Place:

Potters Place is a co-operative, not-for-profit pottery studio located in Walpole, MA offering a variety of hand-building & wheel-throwing programs for children, teens & adults of all levels. Whether you are interested in a one-time workshop or a 6-week series, our skilled instructors will inspire you to create functional & sculptural works of art. We have 23 members, most of whom started out as our students. Twice a year we hold a Show & Sale (our next one is May 1-3) to showcase the work of our members & to raise a donation for a local charity. We offer many classes & workshops for all ages & skill levels, so check them out to sign up for some fun & creativity! Click here for the website www.pottersplace.info