variations on a technique

hand knotted black&white raku bead necklace

every now and then the need to diversify your product and step out of the box of my comfort zone to use a ceramic technique of firing to make new products that help attract new customers to my following.  pictured (above) is a client’s necklace which i just finished hand knotting and posted on my blog to give her the heads up that the item in question is ready for pick-up.  potters and artisans alike some times get comfortable into to a certain way of producing wares and sometimes the “focus” can be a bit narrow.

after years of making wares for home accessories, i decided to branch out and try my hand at hand made jewelry.  same clay and materials but a new set of rules to follow and respect when making wearable art. my focus was more minute in detail ,though some of the motifs are the same. but i found that working on small pieces like beads was the same amount of work as decorating a small bowl or square dish.  happily after endless times of trails and errors i have gotten it down to a science where i can produce small amounts of beads to supply myself with a decent amount to mount 3-4 necklaces at a time. in the end we must challenge our capacity and creative endeavor to try and fail in order to master the various techniques of ceramics and explore new markets for wearable art.  sometimes our efforts do not come to the ideal that we have set in our minds, as to what we would like to accomplish. but trying and getting closer to” that “ideal will help each one of us master our craft whatever the medium. too many times artists like to stick with what they know best and i feel that there is no growth in exploration of materials and technique. we as artists need to step it up and learn the craft from classes and workshops and books and the web, then tweak and turn the techniques on their heads so we can see all the possibilities that are out there for  personal satisfaction in what we create. it depends on the personality of an artist…many  prefer to remain  safe in the things that they produce and have no foresight into how to keep repeat customers and art advocates involved and interested with new products that are not only mugs , cups bowls and vases. i prefer to keep my customers and followers guessing ….it is a way to keep you audience engaged  in your creative process.and always has them coming back for more……..

new products to stimulate sales and peek interest

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every now and then to stimulate interest in work and sales it is important to switch out your product with diverse work in different techniques to allow a refreshing view of a point of sale display to keep local clients and admirers to see new things from the same artist in order to continue to create interest and hopefully sales.  pictured above is the change out of my window display with some of my raku* pieces to give a breath of fresh air to a window display which was previously  filled with my illustrated ceramics. there are many ways to be able to show potential clients and art enthusiasts the diverse possibilities  to the gamma of a body of work, in this case “ceramics” by  introducing work in different techniques and style to be able to test you market and its appeal to the public.

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above is an example of a hand drawn illustration of mine which i intentionally put in my display window to show another side of my craft and by using humor as a tool to attract attention to the display window and then the encounter with visitors to investigate the space and the body of work inside the gallery space.  sometimes it is essential to utilize more than one trick of the installation design to attract interest in different groups of consumers and art enthusiasts. we need to step out of the comfort zone sometimes to attract discussion even criticism in order to create interest  in work where the observer is focused on work through wry humor in this case. this illustration has been so popular with the customers and visitors at the torpedo factory art center that i decided to post it for all to see and you commentary on my wry humor to keep strollers out of the gallery, best of all…..it works…

summer residency at the torpedo factory 2015

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finally i am in my summer residency program a.k.a. visiting artists program at the torpedo factory on the ground floor of the torpedo factory on the waterfront of old town, alexandria for the months of july and august 2015. this is the second and final year that i will do this residency program and the location of my studio#24, is  a potter’s studio  where the mixture of work creates a simple yet contrast of our styles.

i will be hanging out and finally working for myself for the next couple of months, working on new pieces, commissions and new projects.

the contact with the public and contact with possible consumers of art is always an interesting mixed array of personalities . my aim is to further a new, more commercial line for an online market company which i have begun to work with. work that to some might consider a bit more commercial, but with the on-growing desire to be visible to a virtual community where click and buy has become a part of every day life, i am slowly moving towards this direction of sales to create a following online as well as off line. it is extremely important to keep up with the times as technologies progresses and new ways of selling work and creating a visible , more vast audience of art consumers. though hand made seems a bit  more difficult to move through the web, it is vital that we create a presence of high quality wares for new younger group of consumers. i hope that you will all drop by and see the new things that i have in the studio# 24.

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torpedo factory art center    105 north union street   alexandria, virginia 22314

m-f : 10-6  sat: 2.30-6     sun 10-3