This week, I started a new mixed media piece. It is going to be called “Annie’s Bookshelf”. It is based on a photograph I took at the home of a fellow artist.She had the most interesting home. I had fun choosing the ephemera for the piece. The rooster’s stomach is crafted from the address section of an ancient envelope I found addressed to my Aunt Esther. Can you guess which are the bits from pages of an old book teaching English to Japanese speakers? Do you see the bit of a real feather in the rooster’s comb? Part of the vests that the puppets are wearing is an old admission ticket and some of the red color comes from hang tags off my favorite tea, brought back from a trip to Germany. Creating the collage brings back lots of memories. My favorite part comes next when I add paint over the collage to unify areas and emphasize certain area.

Summer is wedding season. I was kept busy working on 3 custom wedding platters. I make the platters with white stoneware clay, which starts out looking gray, but fires to a white color. Then, I give the clay two coats of a liquid black clay called an engobe. It starts out gray and turns a rich black when fired. Then the fun parts begins. While I am waiting for the clay to get to the right consistency to carve, I work out the design. I try to make the design relate to the couple. Ryan is from Canada and Katrina is from the US, so the design incorporates the Canadian Maple leaf twined with the acorn. Did you know that the oak is the American National tree? I didn’t. The other couple are lake people so I incorporated a sailboat into the patterning. Unfortunately, I made a spelling error on one name and had to start all over.