Wednesday, April 29, 2009

ode to spring

Inspired by all the fallen petals from blooming trees, I have been working away on a petals series. Here they all are glazed, fresh out of the kiln.

Below are the process images:

1. bisque stage

2. wax resist applied to the bottoms, preventing glaze from absorbing into that area

3. glazed and drying, waiting to be loaded into the kiln

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

a bowl without a spoon is like...

Every good bowl needs a good spoon, though the ones designed by Kirsten Hecktermann and hand carved in her father's workshop in Kilifi, Kenya put many a good bowl to shame. They are such gorgeous sculptural creations.

The spoons are carved out of managed local hard woods and marine bone. Some styles are available at Horne.

Kirsten's textiles are also spectacular.

Monday, April 27, 2009


I saw the above transferware plate at the Brooklyn Flea the other weekend, and decided to do some investigating into this particular style of decorative ceramics.

Transferware is created by transferring a printed image onto the surface either under or over a glaze. This transfer technique, the predecessor to decals, was developed in England in the mid-18th century, particularly around the Staffordshire region.

The process starts with an engraved copper plate similar to those used for making paper engravings. The plate is used to print the pattern on tissue paper, then the tissue paper transfers the wet ink to the ceramic surface. The ceramic is then fired in a low temperature kiln to fix the pattern. This can be done over or under the glaze, but the underprinting method is more durable. The process produces fine lines similar to the engraved prints in old books. Before transfer printing ceramics were hand painted, a laborious and costly process. You can find more information, and sample patterns, on the Transferware Collector's Club website.

I love the backs of the plates, shown below with the mark of the maker, just as much as the fronts, if not more. This is where graphic design has met ceramics over the centuries.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

bodo sperlein

I found Bodo Sperlein through Horne, a thoughtfully curated online boutique that carries beautiful objects from around world. Lovely, delicate work.

Saturday, April 25, 2009


From my walk in Lincoln Woods, this morning.

white on white

The shapes I threw on the wheel a few weeks ago are finally glazed and out of the kiln. I chose a matte white glaze to accentuate the simplicity of the form. It's usually a clean pure white, but when fired with this particular clay body, which is a high fire stoneware, tiny gray specs appear on the surface, like some bird's eggs. I'm happy with the results.

Friday, April 24, 2009

ah... quince

photo courtesy of design* sponge

A lovely, and entertaining, posting on Design* Sponge about this gorgeous flowering tree used in flower arrangements.

Here is what the quince fruit looks like, just as beautiful as the flowers.

ted muehling

I have been a coveter of Ted Muehling jewelry since the first time I saw my friend Agnethe wear his rose thorn earrings. And now I covet his plates, a collection of exquisite handcrafted porcelain, designed for Nymphenburg. So yummy and buttery and fluttery.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

poppies by irving penn

Irving Penn is represented on Facebook with a fan page started by Ulku Dirioglu (what a great name). I have mixed feelings about social networks, but the postings of Penn's works I really enjoy and look forward to. Above are some recent gems. I think I need to add poppies to my collection of organic bowl images.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

lizzie buckmaster dove

photographs courtesy of NG Art Gallery

Lizzie Buckmaster creates paper construction from images of native Australian flora and fauna, working with the precision of a curious botanist. She reminds us that we look at nature through various prism - cultural, aesthetic, spiritual, scientific - and it can sustain or deny our sense of belonging to a particular place. For Buckmaster, the proverbial journey into the woods taught her to look at her natural surroundings with fresh vision and with this intimate body of work, she takes us on that journey with her. ~from NG Art Gallery

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

one more, a must see

Click on the image to go to the site. So good. Designed by ever impressive Wieden+Kennedy.

the bigger picture

Sometimes I get all wrapped up in the little details of my life. And I turn them over and over in my mind. But then I come across images like the ones below, and somehow my tiny issues no longer matter so much.

photographs courtesy of NASA

Click here for more stunning photographs from NASA's Cassini spacecraft. The spacecraft has been working away for the past four years documenting Saturn and its moons. It's next encounter with Saturn is in 13 days. How do I know? Cassini has a really nice website. Make sure to check out images from previous months, Part 1 and Part 2. You go Cassini.

an affair with numbers

Numbers found in an old calligraphy book are an endless source of inspiration. After scanning them and creating a transfer, I permanently fire them onto a variety of shapes, bowls thrown on wheel and slip-cast.

Monday, April 20, 2009

for typography lovers Try searching by color. Brilliant.

moth orchids are easy

I wanted to share my very first flowering success as an orchid owner. This phalaenopsis "FANGtastic" beauty flowered for me a month ago, sixteen flowers in all. Due to the weight of the flowers, it's constantly in danger of tipping over. Perhaps I overdid it with the orchid food?