March Meet the Maker 2018: Days 6-10

Continued from here….!

March Meet the Maker Day 6: Workspace. Here’s the inside of my studio; to the left of the frame there’s a long shelf that holds more molds, drying greenware, and bisque waiting to be painted. Then I have three wheels (two Brents and a Pacifica), a pouring table, a rolling table with my slab roller, a table with glazes, a rolling table for glazing, a rolling table for wet work (slab building, putting handles on mugs, etc), a rolling table for clean work (wrapping soap, making stitch markers), and along the back there’s my yarn winding equipment, yarn drying rack, back door, dye bar (where I also make soap when not dyeing yarn), and off to the right of the frame is a sink. It is both chaotic and organized, messy and clean, and I love it.

Meet the Maker Day 7 is “Routine”. So. Here we go, imagine a typical day with no drama…. escape bed
turn on coffee pot
– while coffee is brewing, let dogs out, walk over to studio, let Studio Boys in or out, turn on computer, depending on work for the day, start kiln and/or turn on crock pots for yarn dyeing
back to house; coffee, email, social media, blog reading, write any blog posts for the day, followed by shower and if I remember, breakfast
back to studio; depending on work for the day, start dyeing yarn or making soap, or unload yesterday’s kiln load and take product photos
get any orders from the last day packaged and to the post office (run any other errands while doing this)
get back to dyeing yarn, or making soap, or working on ceramics
continue to Make Things for the rest of the day with occasional interruptions for computer work (uploading new product photos, writing listings, or any supply ordering or accounting/office work)
try to remember if I ate lunch
get interrupted by tortoise and/or cats
suddenly realize that it’s almost 6 pm
get to a good stopping point, ask Studio Boys if they want to be inside or outside cats tonight
go back to house
make dinner
watch tv and knit; followed by embracing sleep

March Meet the Maker, Day 8: Flatlay. I admit I had to Google “Flatlay” — I didn’t know overhead shots had a name, I thought it was some sort of layout term for illustrators. Like a storyboard or something. Hahahaha, imma dork. Anyway. So. Flatlay! I have a love/hate relationship with those. They’re pretty, and enigmatic, but most of them look like they’re all photographed by the same person (at least in the bullet journal community, which is where I’m most familiar with the look). I can’t always do a Flatlay, either, with my stuff… see example photo! Mugs, when you’re trying to show them off rather than focusing on the coffee inside them, look pretty weird on their sides. Like Weebles that fell over. So I can use this look with some things I make (soap, yarn) but some of my ceramics just don’t stand well for it. Soap dishes do well (as I’ll show in my next picture today) but mugs, yarn bowls… all the nopes. And I can never photograph my desk like this for a bullet journal shot because there is always waaaaaaaaaaaay too much crap on my desk for that. Nobody needs to see that mess!

March Meet the Maker Day 9: How it’s Made. I debated making sort of a slideshow of how a piece is made, but I felt like to only show one thing isn’t 100% representative of how I make *everything*. Because I make so many different things! Each thing is different; slipcast ceramics… thrown ceramics… handbuilt/slabrolled ceramics… soap with fragrance… unscented soap… solid color yarn… multi-color yarn… stitch markers with lobster claws… stitch markers with rings… you get the idea! It’s all different. My crafting is eclectic and never the same. And yet, there is one thing that is the same about everything I do — it is all done with heart. It is all done with purpose. Most of it is done with fun and whimsy but sometimes also with sweat and frustration. Almost all of it, at some point (like this photo of me making a trivet) was held up, examined with narrowed eyes, adjusted, looked at again, adjusted again, and kept at until I got it where my heart said it was done. Not perfect, but done. Perfect is the enemy of finished, as the quote goes. Anyway. How it’s made? Slowly. With my hands. And my heart.

March Meet the Maker Day 10: Time to Relax. HAHAHAHAHAwhut?! I know not of this Earth thing you call “relax”. I am a self-employed workaholic with a home studio. If I’m not in the studio, I’m thinking about the studio. Relax??? OK, but seriously. I don’t know if I would call what I do to unwind “relaxing” as much as “recharging”. And it can take different forms. Sometimes I need to be alone with my knitting and a podcast and nobody else. Sometimes I need to be with my best girlfriends who will cradle my heart in theirs and fill my stressed-out lungs with laughter. Sometimes I need to go on a road trip with my husband where it’s just him and me and a place we’ve never been. Sometimes I need to go walk out in the woods on my property with a camera and the sound of birds. Sometimes I need the hottest bath I can stand, full of bubbles, with a good book and a cold drink. All of that recharges me. Relaxes? Not so sure. But recharges, definitely.

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