Monday, August 1, 2011

Back to Routines at the Homestead

Ceramic, encaustic, acrylic. metal, wood
Shanna Wheelock, 2011
(photograph by Leslie Bowman)

The American Craft magazine article about my work should be on newstands soon!
(August/September 2011 issue)
to preview the article go to:
"Remote Revival"

Playing around with encaustics the past couple days, I decided to make another pomegranate.
The smooth texture and color is luscious!

This sci-fi looking contraption by John McMurray is a vent!

Honey Pot
(not yet trimmed or fired, fresh off the wheel!)

Big bowl drying on a bat affixed to the wheel.
It's a workout for my arms to center such a big lump of clay.

Bello LOVES garden time.

Bello guarding the bean pole beans.

Bouli playing inside the factory sculpture.
I had been wondering why all the furniture was tipped-over on floors one and three.
Now I know.

It's a beautiful Sunday afternoon in Lubec. The sun is shining, birds singing, sky blue, temps warm. I rose early the past two days and accomplished throwing tasks well before noon, and that left me with time to play with wax and do a few "chores" for the shop. It feels good to have a somewhat uninterrupted week ahead to get things done. Production has been a bit behind this summer for various reasons: bees, globe sculpture, travel, but overall, summer has been productive and pleasurable. I am going to put a request in to the weather goddess for an extension - maybe an extra month or two of summer if that could be arranged? Please and thank you.

The shop is looking a bit sparse of late, but that translates as good because it means that I have had good sales. I've been throwing lots of new work but the drying time is slow: up to three weeks. I finally managed a bisque fire on Thursday and am at this moment firing a second load. I plan to glaze mid week and am looking forward to restocking shelves next weekend. Inspired by the bees, I have begun to make honey pots. The final shape is an unknown until they are trimmed, but so far, I like them. The little lids are adorable!

The past few days entailed a routine of early waking (about 4:oo or 5:00 a.m.), pottery production in "the cave", then time tending to the shop, office details, and encaustic painting. We've enjoyed the company of friends from Cape Breton and Blue Hill. Also, John McMurray, our Lubec Arts Alive sculpture expert who also is quite the engineer, stopped by with a cool new sci-fi looking contraption that will act as a vent for the pottery studio. Air quality will be much better for our lungs! Thanks, John!

All else is going well on the homefront. Bouli is growing and becoming quite demanding. Yes, she seems to rule the roost here. Bello is making slow progress toward reclaiming his space on the feline totem pole but prefers to send most of his time with the beanpoles in the garden. Compared to last summer, the garden looks fantastic! I hear other folks in more southernly areas brag about their bounty of fresh tomatoes and squash, but we have only had a few peas, three cherry tomatoes, swiss chard, and herbs to pluck. Lubec climate is a bit cooler and this is probably why things are behind. I am hoping we can harvest plenty for canning and dehydrating before snow hits!!!! All else fails, we always have the apple trees.

I have a full schedule planned for this week - appointments, shop, production, and supply ordering. I can't believe that it is already August. The Machias Wild Blueberry Festival is in three weeks and I am going to try my hand at vending once again. It's been years. The time leading up to the festival will be nonstop busy in the studio, as well as the time following. Soon I will be back to teaching and taking classes at Heartwood. Each month through November has pottery events slated. Reality is sinking in...I best finish-up this blog and get to work!

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