Thursday, March 31, 2011

Enlighten: Brilliant Mistakes

Wanna be in the movies? Here's your chance. Follow my bouncing thoughts...

I wrote a small essay a while back about the beauty of handmade things. Particularly in today's world, I think appreciating and investing in handmade is important. When I say "handmade" though, it means more than placing your hands on a physical object and making something new and original, it can also mean producing an original vision and experience. In the arts, things like music, dance and theatre fall into this category. You can add other subsections of these: opera, film, performance art, and so on. Original compositions of these aspects are also "handmade" in that they start with a vision or an idea and become a final piece, no less worthy or difficult than the mug produced by a potter. For each artist, in whatever capacity they express themselves, gives a bit of themselves over for public scrutiny, adds a bit of themselves in the finished work for all to see. For me, making art on any level, is an expression of living life and a contribution to the human experience on an incremental scale.

Am I suggesting that those of us who don't produce art are somehow less human and can't participate in that which is handmade because we work at office jobs, financial jobs, teaching jobs, retail jobs, dirty jobs? Not at all. For each of us who can contribute our vision, we need those of us who can support that vision by investing in it. When you buy a mug, you invest in an artist. When you purchase a CD from a new indie band, you invest in an artist. Even if you don't "make" the art, you still participate in the celebration of human expression. You, too, can be an investor and here's your chance...

Paul Brighton

My friend, Paul Brighton, is an extremely talented individual. I met him years ago when he was making music, playing drums in a band. He was a musician and I was in awe of his talent, along with the talent of the other members of the band. Not only was he talented, he was ruthless in his pursuit of making things sound better. Hours and hours of practice, over an over again until he got it right, even the smallest bits. In the end, at concerts, it paid off in performances that total strangers responded to and loved. That experience taught me a lesson in perseverance and tenacity and how important it is to keep learning from your mistakes until you get the result you're looking for. Respect for your own work.

Years later after going our own ways and then getting back in touch recently, I paid a visit to his place and saw all these beautiful paintings on his walls. Paintings that he did! Who knew? I thought he was just a musician! But that's the beuaty about creative minds. Because he is a creative person first and foremost, he creates, where ever and when ever and when he does, he does an excellent job. Now, Paul is on a new adventure. He's about to fulfill a lifelong dream and passion for making movies. After several projects in entertainment, Paul is gathering his energy, ideas, people and props for an independent movie and that's where you, the arts investor, come in. If you ever wanted to be in a movie or help out with a movie or say you were part of a movie, Paul can use your help. If you go to the links provided on this page, they take you to IndieGoGo where Paul has uploaded his pitch for his vision, his film, Brilliant Mistakes. He tells you all about it and then you can choose how much you'd like to chip in, from $25 to $75K. At each level, you get perks and that's the great part! Depending on your investment, you get a copy of the movie and then, can go from a chance to be an extra in the film to the red carpet at the premier to having your name in the credits, permanently, for all to see, from this point forward. Paul is driven and this will happen and you can be a part of it. I've chipped in my chunk of change, get on the bandwagon and help make this happen!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

One More Thing: Mother Earth News et al.

Brown Ripple Vase; $75. Buy on Etsy and $60 will be donated via PayPal to the American Red Cross efforts to help the citizens of the Sendai area of Japan.
There have been such tragic events in Japan that break my heart, I am trying to sell this vase through my  Tea Horse Studio on Etsy. The price is $75 excluding shipping. I will be donating $60 of the sale to the American Red Cross toward the relief effort. This vase and donation was kindly featured in Mother Earth News on Wednesday. I am grateful for the mention. Etsy (and other groups like NCECA that are helping to coordinate and promote the "Handmade for Japan" campaign) also has many other handmade items where the proceeds will either be partially or completely donated to a relief agency to help with efforts in Japan. If you want to give towards that effort, buying a handmade item is a great way to do it as you get something human-made in return, a small reminder of the fragility of us.


Fall down go BOOM!
Been a little busy around here with lots of little things, nothing huge but enough to keep me from updating. First and foremost, the hormone thing. Ugh. What a week. Talk about hostility at inanimate objects flip-flopping to excessive emotionality! I keep looking up to see if there's a dark cloud above me. My Status Shrine is full of icons, and I'm going through chocolate at an amazing rate. How long is this supposed to last again? Two to nine years???

So there's that.

And then I've been getting busy with honing my business plan, getting tax info together, planning exhibitions for later this year hopefully, trying to coordinate a group show application for a regional gallery and working on brand identity. All necessary things but they are investments of time, energy and labor that pay off in the future and not income-generators right off the bat.


Impossible for me to talk without using my hands.
I did a small one-night show for a Gallery Hop in Richmond last week, followed by a talk in Winchester for the Winchester Art Guild. There I spoke about my career, work and specifically, my 35 Symptoms piece. The audience was small and all ladies so the subject matter went over really well. My buddy, Frances wants me to do more talks on the same subject. I just want to make pots! I also have one piece to deliver for a group show in Tennessee. Tennessee loves me.

And to that effect...

I have started on six new teapot ideas in various stages of construction and carving. Most of my work now involves altering and carving with involved textures created with tedious repetitious motions using wood and metal tools. It's a very zen thing for me. I know it's time-consuming but become mesmerized with it and I get the most beautiful patterns sometimes.

Next up...

Tomorrow in Richmond is the Empty Bowls event. 50 of my bowls will be available. I hope they were useful for the final count and that they get picked quickly. I hope to make it to EB. And then it's back to pots.

Oh, and the Bradford Pear tree blew down in a storm last night. The end.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Correction! Artist Talk, March 15th

I've been updated by the Art Guild that I'm due to talk next Tuesday, the 15th, not the 22nd as they previously informed me. Winchester Art Guild, March 15, 7pm, Winchester Public Library. Better get my stuff in gear!

CORRECTION! Upcoming Artist Talk, March 15

The 35 Symptoms; 2010; Clay, glazes, slips, mixed media

MARCH 15, 2011
I will be giving a short artist talk in Winchester, KY at the Public Library on March 15, 2011 at 7pm. This is being sponsored by the Winchester Art Guild and I thank them in advance. If you're in the area, come out and listen to me wax poetic about clay, art and menopause. If you're not in the area, check out your own local art organizations. They probably have some interesting things going on!

Empty Bowls I 2011

Well, things have been a little quiet here in the internet for me but busy as hell in the studio. Last week I wedged 50 ball of clay then threw, trimmed, packed and delivered 50 bowls in greenware to EKU for an upcoming Empty Bowls in Richmond, KY on March 25th or 26th, I believe.
     If you haven't heard of Empty Bowls, it's a great event of giving held in local communities all around the country in a mission to raise awareness and fight hunger in the United States. It involves, (usually), a partnership of potters donating handmade bowls and people donating food and cooking expertise. You pay a fee for any bowl you choose and get to fill your bowl with soup. The proceeds are then used in the fight against hunger. Here is a link to an overview. Keep your eyes peeled, you may have an Empty Bowls event in your community...