So here we are. Christmas comes again! What a year this has been. Full of surprises, tragedy, political upheaval and the rest! The end of 2016 cannot come fast enough in some ways and yet, for me personally, it has been a remarkably good year too: Sales have been good; interest from important directions has been exciting; activity on my social media sites has been incredible and the learning curve has flattened out a wee bit giving me time to consolidate some ideas and try a few new ones. So here are some of the highlights of my ceramic year.
2017 will see the ‘Grand Migration’ to Cornwall which is an enormous step – one that I have been wishing for since I was about ten years old, so not long really!! I am hopeful of collecting some more exciting and interesting commissions; I am taking part in a 3 person show in May – 2 painters have asked me to provide the 3D element to an exhibition at highlighting the best of Surrey’s landscapes at the Fountain Gallery in East Molesey, close to Hampton Court – and it kicks of with Top Drawer which is a huge trade show at Olympia in January. I wonder what, if any, surprises That will send me!
So I would like to wish everyone a very happy Christmas and a successful, healthy and happy 2017. Let’s hope for calm waters and sticky mud!
Christmas is coming, the pigs are getting hot! O sorry, no, that’s wrong isn’t it. I think that I am suffering some kind of melt down post Open Studios and, as a result, I find myself messing about in the studio.
I was rummaging about looking for moulds to play with and I came across a piggy mould.
Now as an inveterate saver I have always believed in incentivising people to save and what better way that to give them a piggy bank for Christmas? Since Klay have taken a stall at the Burgh House Fair on 4th December, I thought that maybe I should think Christmassy for a while and so I got making. The trouble is, I am pathologically unable to make ‘sweet’ and hence a litter of subversive little pigs was begun. I have used strange clays, covered them with mono-printed slip decoration and thrown all kinds of glaze at them.
Inevitably, there have been casualties along the way – adding a think layer of Vulcan black slip to a gentle, porcelain pig was bound to end in tears – but two of the litter made it through the first firing and were looking pretty smart so I threw some random glazes onto them and fired them right up to 1230. Well you can either
live or die trying in my book! The result – pork crackling! Just one pig, the one which didn’t have a mix of slips to begin with, has come through unscathed. Actually I think it is better than unscathed. The mix of slips and glazes has caused some incredible blistering and now I am at that difficult point where I am trying to decide if enough is enough or whether I should be adding to the subversion by putting decals all over it. Hmm . . decisions!
Along the way I have also made a pile of tiny little tree decorations which can go to Burgh House but of proper making, there has been little sign this week. I think I need a few bracing walks on the beach to restore my mojo. Cornwall, here I come!