Etsy Photos

Photographing for my etsy shop… its gotta be a little different from the boring grey tones for me.  Yes I know the grey has it’s place… the galleries, the books… but for etsy, I’m thinking color, and the appeal of  it, for the general public.

The patterns on my biodegradable urns are made from paintings I have done on paper.  I thought, wouldn’t be cool to use that same paper as background for the photos.  I like the results!

Summertime Studio, Biodegradable Urns

I have been focusing on the biodegradable urns as I have the last two summers.  The grasses, leaves and wildflowers are readily available… although I seem to be using less than I have in the past.  I’m leaning more towards the patterns as I have always done in my porcelain pottery.  I love patterns and optical illusions… these feel like they are coming together to give the quilt like feeling I love so much.

Here are some photos of the pieces at different stages of drying in the studio.  Once they are completely dry I will photograph them for my etsy shop, LuciaUrns

Breaking From My Daily Ritual

It is not a regular ritual, like the day in, day out making of my functional pottery.  Making my biodegradable urns is something that happens every couple of months (unless I have a special order).  Making these urns is a whole different mindset from my functional foodie pottery.  The first thing I have to do is clear the big work table… which in turn clears my head.  I lay out the colored papers which I painted months before.  I think about my forms and patterns, roll out the paper clay that I have made weeks before, and begin creating.  The thing I love about these urns is the process… a totally different process than what I do daily in my studio.  The results are immediate, the color, the texture, and the form.  No kiln involved, no waiting a couple of weeks for the results!

Permanence/Impermanence

Impermanence in ceramics… an oxymoron, as potters we strive for permanence.  Pottery is fired to 2300 degrees.  Pottery marks time, it is what we find in archaeological excavations, telling us about cultures from long ago. 

As a potter I hope that my pots will bring a lifetime of enjoyment and use for the people who own them, and some memory of the maker.  ‘Functional’, ‘useful’ and ‘beautiful’ are words I like to hear when it comes to my pottery.  The question I have asked myself the past few years is this:  can I leave my mark, making beautiful, useful, functional pots without them being permanent?  In my biodegradable urns I feel I have achieved this. I am making a piece of art that is only meant to last for a short time, but this short time is of utmost importance… the transition from life to death.  Rituals surrounding death have always included art, masks, body paint, pottery, objects, song and dance, which are meant to transition the person to the afterlife, and help sooth the grieving.  In making these urns I am following these ancient traditions.  I hope that what I create in the urns is a balm for the living, which helps to sooth the grief.   

Useful Pottery… that doesn’t last

We are living in an age where so many things serve a purpose for a short while. Many of the gadgets we use are actually meant to break after a certain time period so we buy more, or the latest version of that item. Yet the materials they are made from last forever.

When I think of pottery I think of lasting forever,  yet I love to think of ways that clay can be useful and go back to the earth.  (More to come on permanence/impermanence soon with my biodegradable urns). For now, two things to share, a new biodegradable urn, and a wonderful blog post about clay chai cups from India!

 

 

My New Biodegradable Clay Urns

This past summer was a very productive summer for me, designing new biodegradable urns.  I started making biodegradable urns two summers ago using recycled paper, re-claimed clay and wild flowers, (see website).  Although I liked the urns the timing wasn’t working so well, because the flowers that worked well were only available for short periods of time.  This really limited the time of the year I could make these urns.  I knew within the first year as they began to sell, that I had to make these differently. 

My first love before pottery was printmaking, especially mono-printing.  This past winter I took a workshop with Catherine White, she had us create mono prints and collage on paper.  My love of mono-printing was revived!  Two of my potter friends Mary Barringer, and Tiff Hilton, who also took the workshop decided we would meet at my studio monthly to continue the painting, and collage work.  From there, I began to incorporate these mono-printed papers into my urns!

 I have been busy taking photos, re-vamping my biodegradable urn page of my website, and setting up a new etsy shop,  (both not quite ready yet, but very soon!)  Here is a little preview of a few urns, from the Blue Series!  More to come soon!

 

 

Biodegradable Urns at Lucia Pottery

For years I have been wanting to create a pot that does not have to be fired, but can still serve a function and be used…  I guess it’s the environmentalist in me.  Every time I fire that kiln I think about where is the energy coming from.  I ask myself what can I make that is still considered pottery, and leave its mark on someone’s life, but will also leave just a little mark on our resources.

So what would a pot like this entail?  

For the past year I have been working on this idea for an urn made of recycled paper, and recycled clay. I have been making urns for people and their pets for the past five years.  So making a biodegradable urn made so much sense for me.  It does not have to be fired because there is so much paper in it… so think of it as handmade paper with clay to give it form.

Here is a little slide show of the urns.  I took these photos last fall in our back woods near the Green River.

See this and all of my work on my brand new website coming tomorrow at noon!  www.luciapottery.com

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