I'm not sure how I managed to skip the entire month of June, but here we are, into the second month of July. Summer has sped by, and mentally, I am still partially living in downeast Maine. We had such a nice trip and by the time I was repacking (and shipping) to come home, my fingers were itchy for clay. I kept my watercolor and pen and ink sketchbook religiously on my trip, and I have so many ideas to play with.
As promised, I'll share two of my plates that went to Maine as gifts. First, #23, a tiny porcelain plate and egg cups set that I embedded with sea glass from my last trip to Maine. I found these sea gems at Cape Elizabeth, on a "secret" glass beach a stone's throw from a heavily-visited tourist spot. I love how the glass runs and pools and will keep playing with it this year. I brought home at least 10 lb of glass, in both large chunks and tiny gem-sized pieces.
Plate 24 is something that I will definitely make again. I gave this handled tray/plate to my friend Betsy, because I credit my sea stone love to her old Flickr photos. Very sadly for me, by the time I got this piece to Maine it had crazed like mad, even though I mixed up a supposedly no-craze glaze for my problematic batch of porcelain. It was fine for a few days, but a week later, the surface spiderwebbed. Fortunately, one rarely serves liquidy foods on trays like this, so. . . . Anyway, the stones are simple rubber stamps I carved after my trip last year, and I mixed up underglaze to approximate the deep gray of the granite stones.
Shortly before I left, I opened a box of stoneware that I used to use to see if it would work for me and threw several things- a batch of tumblers and mugs, and this plate (#25, lower right), which I coated with a cobalt oxide wash and carved. It worked well with everything, so I think that I will be going back to it. To the right (#26) is the same clay body, with some simple notches carved in and a coating of sea glass pieces. I was tickled to see that the pink/lavender kept its color during firing. At top, a plate (#27) from the good batch of porcelain, painted with the rugosa roses that were just beginning to bloom on our trip. I can't tell a major difference in the texture or color between this porcelain and the much-easier stoneware, so I will probably go back to this when I buy more clay next week (because I am slap out).
This is the 28th week of the year and I have been playing with ideas from Maine. I've offered peeks on my Instagram feed, but I hope to show you more next week.
If you are local, I'm having my annual summer sale this weekend, beginning this evening at 6, and continuing Saturday from 10-4. Drop by!