Test Tiles

Have you ever had a thing that you had to do, lodged in the back of your consciousness, just waiting to be acknowledged and given room to breathe? This has been it for me since November. When there aren’t enough fresh moments to go around, months can slip by, when all I can do is get everything configured correctly for the operation, but can’t commit to it’s execution. The stars seem to have to be aligned in just such a way for the start to occur, but then, the rest will flow with greater and greater momentum as the front-end of the process get’s out of the way.

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Path Studies

I had a dream or something about playing around with varying combinations of point, line, direction and color, over a grid, as a way of mapping the story arc of a lifetime. The rules of the drawings are inspired by algorithms used by computers to solve pathfinding problems in spatial exercises. But looking at the simplicity of the image, I’m reminded of things like sigils, hobo signs and constellations, all to do with ways of finding one’s way. These are just quick renderings in colored pencil, but I’ve a mind to try them next in watercolor or guache.

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The Veil

There are worlds within this world. Everyone is capable of experiencing places where the border realms collide, but most won’t share these stories out of fear of being publicly shamed for having them. These moments exist in our shadows, and are often some of our most emotionally charged memories. At this point on the calendar wheel, we celebrate the thinning of the veil between worlds. Now mostly lost in a flurry of costumes and candy, the potential to reach across the divide is still intuitively understood, though hidden in plain sight. Echoes of ghosts can be encountered across the web as well, as we begin to hit digital memorialization and the effects of developing AI.

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A Home in Powderhorn

It’s that time of year again, the park is buzzing with activity. The jewel of the neighborhood, Powderhorn hosts people from all walks, coming together around this common space. It’s one of those things that can’t be described in words, you have to feel it to appreciate it fully. Mayday pageants, candlelight peace vigils, the PoHo Art Fair, Empty Bowls, voting, community pottery, youth sports, 4th of July fireworks, all manner of holy days and so on. Someone once told me that the Dali Llama once blessed the park, which I can’t verify, but I think the area is just magical. I’ve lived in 5 houses around Powderhorn over the course of ten years. I got married there, I’m still here.

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Seasonal Thing Grab

Personally, I like the spirit of giving, but dislike the shameless consumerism involved. I’m kind of more about creating an experience around the gift than the object itself. How to do this when you are a maker of things? Tell a story, your story, and sell that instead. Make sure that there are broad strokes that intersect with your audience in accessible ways, don’t over-intellectualize, don’t make people guess what it’s about, tell them. If your angle is obscure, find a way to humanize it and enable the buyer to tell their own story through the piece. Then your work has the potential to become, like the Velveteen Rabbit, real.

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Try Again. Fail Again. Fail Better.

I recently came across the quote: ‘Try again. Fail again. Fail better.’ – coined by playwright Samuel Beckett and used by local Maker Workshop, Leonardo’s Basement on all of their promotional materials. This is speaking to me after coming down off of a lot of momentum, a lot of feedback and, now laid out before me, a lot of revision ahead. August is a challenging time to stay motivated. Having spent most of the summer in production mode, I’m feeling the need to step back and reassess process before going forward.

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Crystallized

One of the most interesting aspects of ceramics, for me, is that you are literally harnessing chemical forces of nature when firing a kiln. We send people into space in ceramic-tiled rockets, and it’s just about the oldest art form there is. The potential for growing crystal formations in glazes piqued my interest after playing around with Epsom salt accretion and experimenting with other household chemicals that combine to coax mineral gardens out of evaporating liquids and time. Someday I would love to capture these inside a glass bubble for wear, but as yet they’ve proved too fragile to tolerate such abuse.

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Triple Goddess

They say that two’s company and three is the number to begin a quest with. Sister artists, functional sculptor Korrin Lohmann and Sarah Holmes of Black Spoke Leather Co and I endeavor to keep each other accountable to artistic goals. We meet regularly to discuss upcoming deadlines, critique work and trouble-shoot business hangups. Three is good, but more’s better if you can rally them. I can’t overemphasize the value in cultivating a support network like this, however infrequent, it is critical to making meaningful artistic progress over the long haul!

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