Faeries – the Art Elements theme reveal

This month flew by on gossamer faerie wings. Or a mermaid retrieved it from a shipwreck to hide in her undersea lair. Or a green fae woodland spirit absconded with it- hiding it in a hollow tree in a mystical wood. Whatever the cause – its reveal day! And this theme is one I work with frequently. Caroline introduced it – and I shared some fae inspiration earlier this month on the blog. I have a few different things in progress – let me share them with you…

A few months ago – I pulled four fairy cabochons. My fairy design is very butterfly inspired – as I think butterflies could easily be faeries in disguise. There is also a nod to The Preservers of Elfquest – a graphic novel/comic series that had been a huge part of my fae aesthetic since I was 12! (That’s a whole other post!)

I haven’t gotten any further than pulling beads… these four are Earth, Air, Fire, and Water. I plan to start the bezels all the while designing the surrounding bead embroidery to reference the elements.

With my schedule a little hectic ( who am I kidding? its crazy!) with fall shows – I have been glazing a few variations on my Faerie tile. One of the things that keeps this from boring production work is individually glazing each tile differently. My glazing style involves quite a bit of detailed hand painting in underglazes. This trio below shows you some of my fairy themes: Earthy with a seedling, celestial with the Earth/moon backdrop, and an ethereal Celtic version.

I did have a chance to play a bit this month: I received a printed moth paint/embroidery kit from Lesley for my birthday. I want to paint some, bead others… but one large one had to be a faerie! (The directions recommended a thin coat of white craft glue before cutting to prevent the fabric from fraying… )

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Painted in thinned acrylic, ready to cut out.

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She will flutter over my reading chair…

I think she is a perfect fit with this stoneware goddess pendant. I think I will hang her in the studio…

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Please join us in the hop! Links to participating AE members and guests are here:

Guest Artists
Cat 
 
Art Elements Team
 

Coming out of hibernation… new tile designs

This has seemed like the longest winter and the shortest winter! But Spring has finally sprung – even with Her last gasp of icy weather. I have not been idle – even thought the posts here have been sporadic. With the new season awakening  I will breathe new life into this blog!

Since this is the time of year when I have no real shows to speak of – I have been designing and sculpting new tiles for my Mythic Nature line. Here is a visual journal of the 4 new designs – and one revision. These designs will be available starting with my show at Spoutwood Farm’s May Day Faerie Festival! 

The triple raven design will be a nice partner to my Triple hares design. I left the bird bodies free of feather/texture as I can customize that by hand. Some will be painted with feather detail – others will be glazed in glazes that “break” over texture.

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Mandrake tile in progress

The Mandragora – or mandrake tile is a new vision of a motif I had before. The previous version was from a Medieval woodcut. This is a more organic version – with leafy swirls and tendrils. The text will be carved into the scrollwork individually.

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” A book is a dream…” sketch

Neil Gaiman said: ” A book is a dream that you hold in your hands.”  This dreamy tile was inspired by things I love: pets, coffee, books… While I do not currently have a cat, it embodies cosiness to me. All the creatures, sharing space on a lazy relaxed day filled with fabulous reads. And coffee. Always coffee. This tile  – Im really excited – to do patterns in the armchair! Textures! Sgraffito! Glazed patterns!  SO many ideas.

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Sculpting the forms.

A fairy door – just testing the mold here. Matte finishes, speckles of moss and lichen on the rocks. Metallic glazes on hinges….

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And this is new for me. Last year I created a commemorative design, an Art Nouveau faerie, for the 25th anniversary of Spoutwood’s Faerie Festival. ( If interested – email me – there are still a few available.) I loved the figure – and decided to adapt the design for continued use. I see her with starry sky behind, holding the moon. I see her as an Earth spirit with a globe. I see her with florals, or leaves, or an orb of fire. Stay tuned!

I’m really excited and invigorated with this new body of work. I have fallen in love with clay again. Please sign up for my newsletter if you are interested in new work-in-progress pix and news of upcoming shows! (Sign up on the top left. ) 

Friends, fae, family… faces of Spoutwood

I didnt know what I had been missing until I found it. When I did my first fantasy/fairy themed event – I was overjoyed at the sense of community. I had found a tribe of people from all geographic locations, all walks of life, all ages, that were like me. Artists, performers, dancers, musicians… people that live a creative life, work at their passion, follow their bliss… (Not to sound trite – its true.) A tribe of people where many of us share similar spiritual beliefs, are inspired by similar experiences, where you can discuss folklore and myth more easily than current events. Here are people that keep a hold on that joie de vivre…that ability to play, celebrate…and its a place where all are welcome. 

It was wonderful to spend the weekend at Spoutwood with my friends, my tribe…

Angela, Virginia, and me

Robert/Gandersnitch

Trinket

Scott - Frenchy & the Punk

Samantha - Frenchy & the Punk

Twig

Maypole

Performer

Me and Wedji

Angela, Virginia, me

Thank you! Until next time…

 

A few my favorite things… Artists work from Spoutwood

At Spoutwood Faerie festival – there are so many talented makers, artists, craftspeople, performers, artisans… there is no way I could give you an overview. Let me give you a series of pictures to highlight a few of my favorites, my friends and neighbors… 

Gorgeous parasols…

Parasols

Butterfly Bones – resin at its finest, many organic materials. Stellar display! (Shop here.)

Butterfly BOnes

Wing and Talon Leather – I was glad to get to meet and hang out with Donovan, my neighbor. He is a gifted artist, and makes the most exquisite masks. All by hand, hand tooled, hand painted, no assistants – his vision, his creativity. Those barrettes made me want to grow my hair long. Seriously. ( Shop here.)

Wing and Talon

Wing and Talon barrettes

Echo and Wild Jewelry – Confession – I own MANY of Jeannie’s pieces. I tend to purchase a new one each year at the MD Rennaissance Festival. I have been acquiring them for years… Over the last few years we have become friends as well. Her vision and her spiritual outlook mirror mine, she works in sterling, I work in clay…

Echo and Wild

Echo and Wild fairies

Molly Stanton of Elven Elysium. Its polymer. Look again, believe me. Gems, cabochon set, beaded stands, dangle… Molly is a gifted sculptress; you should see her figurative work!

Elven Elysium

Elven Elysium 2

Dancing Pig Pottery – another artist who I know from attending the MD Rennaissance Festival – I got to meet Virginia at Wicked Faire in February. Isnt it ironic that the potters always get along famoulsy, even when doing work as varied as hers and mine?  I now have a fantastic mug of hers for my morning coffee! ( shop here.)

Dancing pig pottery

DP detail

Like I said – just a few, a little eye candy for you! These artists are all creating their work themselves, 100% hand made. In the days of collectives, and corporate entities disguised as handmade artist/craftspeople – its nice to support the real deal! (That last comment refers to a recent Etsy scandal…)

 

 

Snippets from Spoutwood – or a glimpse into Faerieland…

Looking for the One Crayon Color Blog hop? Click here!

 

I was away this past weekend. To a show in rural Pa, and to FaerieLand…

setting up

It all starts with lifting and toting, travel and chores…

tent view

But with this view from my tent – with every glimpse the mundane Muggle world slips a bit futher away…

stream

You catch a hint of movement from the corner of your eye. Simply the stream gurgling along, or was it a small fae flitting by? A goblin amidst the greens?  

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The Maypole rises amidst the trees of Spoutwood Farm

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And magic awaits in every nook and cranny…

Four legged creatures show their true colors: 

Fairy pup

Pixie dog

Spread your wings – as the Fae come from near and far to play today. 

Twig

( Above photo – Twig! The ever charming celebrity fae ambassador. )

Stay tuned tomorrow – a few of my favorite things!!

 

Beautiful day in the neighborhood…

RenCon was a great time – I have new favorite bands on continual loops in my head; new inspiration percolating for wonderful new tile designs; new fans and collectors of my work (Thank you all!) – but the people! The VIPs’ were open and accessible. The fellow vendors were interesting, interested, enthusiastic, sharing. The attendees were excited and appreciative. Whew!

I had great neighbors on my hallway, and I thank them for such a wonderful time!Let me introduce you:

Gypsy Nomads:  I think I need to listen to Track 3 every morning. No better way to start the day! I dont describe music well – but go listen to things on their website. They are infectious! And they are both visual artists as well, which thrills me, a bonus. These two were my across the hall neighbors providing a soundtrack for the weekend and performing both nights. And I look forward to seeing them live at FaerieCon! (Although I think they will be at Spoutwood Farms May Day Faerie Festival!)

Dancing Hands, FGM: Emma Dancing Hands (Fairy Goddess Mother, that is…) Here shown doing Fhairy strands in E’s hair. Everyone knows her, everyone loves her, she is a joy to be around. Its that simple! Not only will she be attending Spoutwood – there is a Charles Vess drawing of her for this years advertisement!  Banner

Kathryn Elizabeth Noska: Kathryn is a painter, poet, and self described ‘stonesayer’ and when you see her work you will understand. The stones speak to her, and she to them. Her paintings are exquisitely detailed painted from life, and she captures the characters in the stones themselves, showing them to us on canvas. I did not try to capture the painting’s detail on film (Just go take a look for yourself!)… and Kathyrn herself proves an elusive subject! From her booth: Noska book Kathryn’s amazing hand bound book of her drawing and poems. Noska stonesAnd her oracle stones. So lovely!

 

Goblin Bazaar: …” eclectic array of things from the realm of Fae captured and created by Kimberley Coffman as is inspired by the strange and wonderful world around us.” So true! Kim’s work is magical. Her fae are original, exquisitely painted one of a kind sculptures. I was enchanted!

kin faeClearly she takes good care of them, since not a one looked unhappy in their traveling containments. And her skills with a woodburning tool – really? Kim pendants

Kim and SarahKim, (onthe right) with Sarah of ToadstoolNtreestump.

Thank you one and all for making the weekend so magical! See you in November!

 

Euphoria…

Main Entry: eu·pho·ria
Function: noun
Etymology: New Latin, from Greek, from euphoros healthy, from eu- + pherein to bear — more at bear
Date: circa 1751
: a feeling of well-being or elation
A simple word, a complex potpouri of sensation, emotion, experience, feeling… A patchwork of sights, and sounds; drumbeats and squeaks; costumes, artwork, faces… friends. RenCon.
It was its first year. Would it satisfy? Would it be successful? Would it draw the crowds of its sister show FaerieCon? Yes, and yes, and no…
The crowds were less crowded, true. There were fewer vendors, fewer lectures, true. The business end of the weekend came away even. But for me personally – Euphoria.
I started the magic with Fhairy strands. Gossamer metallic threads entwined with my hair, bestowed by Dancing Hands, my Faerie Goddess-Mother. Fhairy strands
The weekend was a whirlwind of music – Gypsy Nomads, Estampie and Qntal from Germany; artwork – wonderful neighbors in Kathyrn Noska and Kimberly of Goblin Bazaar; Mark Lewis and his amazing tales, (and jokes!); and being able to meet and chat with people who I admire and respect – Caitlin Matthews and Brian Froud!
Sarah Mark me Caitlin and me
But the true euphoria comes from the feeling of community, of having found my tribe – where creativity is admired, recognized, revered. Where people express themselves in costume and revelry; and unite in a shared experience. It is hard to put into words, but it is a magical feeling that resonated long after the artwork and instruments are packed away.
The euphorical feeling, the shared wonder and excitement is a creative tonic. The new ideas that are swirling in my mind, ready to be put on paper, and into clay… will carry me forward, the last traces of the magic of the weekend…
Green Man