Thursday, January 27, 2011

Next Group of Birdies

Hi Everyone, I hope your week is going well. I've had a couple of really good days back in the studio this week, where I actually had a nice window of time to work, instead of grabbing an hour here or there. I took this photo for a possible client the other day, and there are some new birdies pictured in here. I am having fun doing the bases in different colors, and that also suits my ADHD too. :) I get tired of doing things all the same color all of the time.

In other news, I spoke to a fellow sculptor the other night at my art guild meeting, and he told me of a foundry that's closer to home! I loved the guys in Florida that I used, but if I can use a good foundry closer to home... Well, that would be just awesome. So I'm going to set up a meeting with these guys and see what we can do for each other. Maybe I'll get to have some new bronzes in the near future! I'd love to have some smaller sculptures cast in bronze... Hope your week finishes up on a happy note! I think I'm going to head to the gym this morning and try to keep this body healthy.. ~Kelly

Saturday, January 22, 2011

"Provide" - a sculpture in the Cabarrus Arts Exhibit

Hello there! 
I'm going to keep this a short post today; I've got to get ready for my welding class!  I just wanted to share another piece in the exhibit with you.  I really love how this bird mama turned out.  She's pretty substantial in size: about 33"H.  I fired the base and the main bird separately, and then assembled it with a threaded rod and nut.  It seems to work better for the design and the size of this piece.  I hope you like her too!!  If you look closely, there is a flower in her beak.  That is such an important detail to the piece, I didn't want you to miss it...

Another cool thing is that a fellow blogger went to see the exhibit on the first day that it opened, and wrote about it in a post!  You can read about it here.  She sent me a super nice email and I was happy to connect with her.  I love how small the world can be, thanks to Blogland. :)

So, that's it for now.  I hope everyone is having a great weekend.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Cabarrus Arts Council exhibit "Word Processing" Opens!

Yay! The day has finally arrived - my group exhibit with the Cabarrus Arts Council finally opened yesterday!  I have been looking forward to this exhibit so much, especially after meeting the group that runs the Arts Council.  They were so nice and so organized and meeting them was a breath of fresh air.  The previous exhibit was still partially up when I got there to deliver my sculptures, and so I got to see the wonderful quality of art these guys have in their exhibits.  I am honored to be showing with them and I can't wait to go up for the official reception and see the "Word Processing" exhibit with my own eyes.

I have been very good about not showing pics of the new pieces that are in the exhibit, and now that the show has opened, I am free to share those here!  I'll show you one of my favorites now:

You got to see a sneak peek of this one just after I finished building it, and then another peek came after I glazed the base.  This sculpture is one of the first that I have added wings to; wings that were meant to fly and could actually lift a body up into the air.  Her wings are small, but they are a beginning, and hopefully will lead to wherever she wants to go.

You can see the wings more clearly in a photo of the backside of the sculpture.  I really like how this piece turned out.  For you clay folks out there, she was fired to Cone 2, and painted with all underglazes.  I did do a top coat/sealer to add a bit of shine and to deepen the colors a bit.  I also love the smoother, satiny finish of the topcoat, rather than the cold, hard feeling of the ceramic.  I fired the base and the body separately, and then bolted them together with a threaded rod and nut.  It makes for easier shipping when the pieces come apart.  That's a tough decision I had to make - whether or not to fire them in two pieces.  Some buyers want the ease of shipping when the sculpture can be disassembled like that, and yet others don't want to have to deal with putting it together.  They just want to unpack it and have it complete.  So I have decided that as my sculptures get larger, I will separate out the pieces for safety. (This sculpture isn't huge, but I was testing out my technique of joining - she's just 20"H.)   Hopefully that won't be a problem for anyone.

In my next post, I will show you another piece in the exhibit.  Both of these are my new favorites!


Monday, January 17, 2011

Stretching and Adding in More Creativity

One of my personal goals for 2011 was to start being more involved in the arts locally.  I started working on this at the end of 2010, so I got a little bit of a head start on this one.  I wanted to start networking more and meeting more creative people and try some new things.

This is my lovely welding booth. Number #11!
For Christmas this year, my hubby got me a welding course at the local community college.  Sounds strange, I know, but I've been wanting to learn how to weld for a couple of years now.  I am not looking to get into metal arts, but I do want to know how to make bases and armatures for my sculptures.  I think this would be great knowledge to have.  Thus the welding course gift.  So I went last week to my first class, and it was just a classroom lecture.  Lots of talk about electricity and safety and safety equipment.  All good things to know, because I don't want to get injured doing this!  My first session in the welding shop was on Saturday and the guys are all quite nice.  They don't seem to mind me being a girl, and they don't really try to help/interfere in any way, but they do little things, like make sure I can see during demos.  I'm in that class with some super big dudes, and they always make sure I can slide to the front to see what the instructor is doing.  I appreciate that!  So far, my welding is pretty bad, but I will get better as the class goes on!  I'm so glad I am trying it.  It's fun (and scary) to stretch out in new ways.

Another fun thing I did was on Friday.  Laura, a friend of mine here in Charleston, organized a "tweetup" for ladies who are on Twitter in the Charleston area.  As it turned out, it was mostly entrepreneurs and creatively-minded ladies.  It was a super high-energy kind of thing, and I think that everyone was so excited to be with other like-minded individuals.  There was talk of more group luncheons and some folks were instant friends and began to make plans for other outings.  The girl I sat across from, Charlotte, is a wedding photographer, but also loves the more traditional arts.  She was trying to convince me to go to a figure drawing class here at one of the art centers.  I took a life drawing class in college - and I was terrible!  My proportions were always off and it looked like my models had fallen out of a 6 story window, only to land in these horrible, awkward positions, instead of these lovely, graceful poses that we were supposed to capture.  BUT, in the spirit of the moment, I told her I would love to go, but that I wanted to sit in the back with shields on the sides of my paper, so that no one else could see what I was drawing. :)  But you see, I think it is good to work on drawing and sketching, no matter what the subject, and spending time on learning/practicing other forms of art is not time wasted.  So while my drawings may look terrible in the beginning, hopefully they will start to improve over time.  I will keep you posted on how the classes go, if we actually get brave enough to go! :)

How are you adding to the creativity in your life? Are you taking a fun e-course or trying out something new and slightly scary?  I'd love to hear about it!  I have seen a couple of really cool e-courses out there right now, that I'd love to try....


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Thankful on this Cold Day

Can I just say that you guys rock??!!?  I wrote in my last post that I was struggling, and feeling pretty low-energy, and I am so thankful for all your well wishes.  And I am happy to report that I am actually feeling better today (thank goodness!) and I am SO THANKFUL to be back in the land of the living!!  I'm pretty sure that it was a combination of your well-wishes and the multiple naps that got me to feeling better.  I was starting to think I should say I was a professional napper, instead of an artist!

So I was in the studio, snapping some photos of sculptures for a possible client, when my eyes fell on this piece.  It is the back of a base that I have not shared with you guys, but it suited my mood perfectly.  I am thankful for all of my blog friends, my daughter, and my two napping sidekicks (my dogs)!   Thank you everyone!


Monday, January 10, 2011

Picture of a Birdhouse

Hello there, Bloggers!

I should apologize for my absence lately.  I have been struggling with a serious lack of energy and motivation.  I think I know what's come over me, though, and I hope that I can push through this and get going again.  As I write this, I am having a small cup of coffee and I'm going to make myself get productive.  No more lolly-gagging about!!

Things here are so exciting, and I can't believe that I'm just wandering around like a bump on a log most days, with no energy to jump on all the cool things happening in my life. 

But, I have my to-do list right here next to me, and I'm going to keep this post short and actually take care of a task on my list.  But before I go, I wanted to share this photo of a birdhouse I made recently.  The color of the bird is more of a nice turquoise color, rather than the darkish blue that it looks like in the photo...

Have a great day!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Don't You Just Love Surprises in the Mail??

We have just returned home from two weeks of holiday traveling and I can't tell you how happy I am to be home.  The only downside is that my to-do list is a mile long and I feel a little stressed about it. It was during one of these stressed out moments that hubby came home from the post office with bills (yuck), and a package (hmmmm, what's that??).  So I picked it up and it was addressed to me!!  Yay! Now I'm really getting excited, because I knew I hadn't ordered anything since before Christmas.  And then I saw that it had come Air Mail and now I was really curious.  So when I saw the return address,  I was thrilled!!  My friend Kylie Stevens had her first solo art show for her paintings a little while back, and I wrote about it here.  She was awesome to include all of us in blogland in her show prep and she was great to make us feel a part of her show.  She even ran a door prize for those of us who left comments and made it fun for us.  I was the lucky winner of her door prize, and so this was my prize!  I couldn't wait to tear into that package!!

 So this is a pretty stinky photo of the goodies inside, but she sent me a lovely hand-drawn and handwritten note, a cute little clip for my hair and a super cool hat with a big flower on it!  And since it's cold here now (unlike for her, it's summer right now), I can use this hat right away.  I think the hat is my favorite! Even hubby liked it.  And it's a muted brown with a bit of gray in it, so it will go with pretty much anything.  Thank you Kylie!!

Kylie has been great and I am so glad we have connected.  Our lives run some interesting parallels, even though we are on opposite sides of the world.  I hope that one day, when I'm rich and famous, I'll be able to fly over to her side of world to see one of her art exhibits. 

In other news, I'm excited about the upcoming year!  I feel like things are gathering steam and I am ready for the action.  I just dropped off my sculptures at the Cabarrus County Arts Council and I'm going to talk about that in my next post. 

Have a great day!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Quietly Freaking Out

Hello there!
Everyone is doing all of these lovely and inspiring posts about what 2010 meant for them and what their plans are for 2011.  It's all great to read, and I wish I could post one of those kinds of things here, but the truth is this: I am quietly freaking out over here, because I can't find my sketchbook for The Sketchbook Project!  My family and I have been doing quite a bit of travel over the holidays, and I have been taking the sketchbook wherever I go so that I can work on the last few pages I needed to fill before I send it off.  So we arrived home a few days ago, in between trips to do laundry, unpack and then repack.  As I was repacking, I started looking for the sketchbook and I can't find it.  I can't tell you the feeling in my stomach.  Kinda of slimy, kinda upset, and kinda tense.  I have put SO many hours in that thing and now it is due soon! 

I'm still out of town right now, sans sketchbook, and I am headed home tomorrow.  I am planning on turning that house upside down til I find that book. Please send me help and mental vibes in finding that thing!!!

But before I head home tomorrow, I will be dropping off my sculptures for the Cabarrus County Arts Council exhibit.  I am looking forward to seeing the gallery space and meeting the coordinator who contacted me originally.  I did manage to get some professional photos taken of the new work, so once I get a chance to process those photos, I will post a few here.  I also got my bronze photographed as well, so it will be super nice to finally have those and be able to put them on my website/blog, etc.

Here is a description of the upcoming exhibit, straight from their website:

1/18: Word Processing Opens
10 am - 4 pm, Monday through Friday
The Galleries, 65 Union Street South, Concord NC
The Cabarrus Arts Council welcomes you to our first exhibition of 2011, Word Processing. Artists use text, letters and words as texture and design to deliver their points of view. Ceramics, paintings and installations are featured in this exhibition. Free and open to the public, as always.

I hope you all are having a good year so far.  I think it is going to be great (once I find my sketchbook, anyway)!