Friday, October 31, 2008

Trick or Treat? A Two-for-One

Look closely. This artist is taking care of both Halloween and Valentine's Day at the same time.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Getting Ready for Halloween

He's small, just under 4", but don't mess with him.

Monday, October 27, 2008

It's Not Heavy, It's My Head

Not long ago Robyn posted pictures of figures with stuff on their heads and mentioned in a comment that it's common in her part of the world for people to carry things on their heads. How could I have missed that? Had I never looked at a National Geographic magazine? Well, yes, as a teen-age boy but at that age I was looking for something else.

Anyway, here are two small heads I did a few years ago. Both are just under 4" high.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

To Susan, with all my love

To Susan, and to all the wonderful women artists I know:
Go here.
Thank you.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Buddy Holly Glasses

About two months ago Susan asked me to take a picture of some street art (aka "Graffiti") near downtown while I was on my Sunday bike ride. It was just a pair of Buddy Holly glasses she said, very graphic and large (about 3 feet high) but on a railroad overpass near an intersection where there was construction and no place to stop a car .

Of course I forgot. ("I was listening, I just didn't remember.") When she brought it up again it was to tell me an eyeball had been added. And by the time I finally got around to taking the picture, the boys had been added. The next week it had been painted over by the construction crew.

Yesterday, driving through Zilker Park, Susan noticed this hanging from the trees and made me take her back today to get a picture. It looks like it's made of foamboard, is about 3 feet across and spins in the wind. She'd like to have gotten a better picture but traffic was crazy in the park so this is as close as we got.

I don't know who's doing this but I'm starting to look around more as I drive. However, Susan has been given strict orders to quit looking around so much as she drives. The only thing worse than a bad driver is a bad driver who's looking at stuff.

Late update: We took off on an errand. No sooner did we get down to Barton Springs Road when Susan spotted another set of glasses. Fortunately she wasn't driving. Who is doing all these?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Janis and Don Trash Around

I owed a debt to Janis and I finally repaid it by taking her Trash shopping. Some women like to shoe shop or something stupid like that but my kind of gal likes to Trash shop. And they don't take Visa at my Trash store.

Remember: Trash is only the failure of imagination.
Late edit about the quote: A lot of people have said it, in different versions, for many years. I think it orginally came about, in some variation or another, right after Woodstock when the clean-up began. Anyway, the most popular attributed quoting comes from Aaron Kramer, a very gifted artist.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Squadron

In formation, drying, waiting to be glazed and named.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

What Was It? The Rest of the Story

Revisiting my strange plant. The first picture below was taken October 9, the second on October 12. It finally bloomed on October 14. Just for the record, the flower smells like rotten meat and attracted a lot of flies. Anybody know what this is?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Here I am, fully flummoxed, watching Chris, my nephew. Like any self-respecting teen-ager he's looking down because he's texting. Me? Text? Huh? Chris plays the trumpet, is funny, wise enough to catch on to all of his Aunt Susan's snide jokes and smart enough to pretend that he doesn't to his parents. His band was recently in a marching competition and looked real sharp.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Dude Done

This is the final glazed version of a piece shown earlier (here). Again, Robyn and her blog continue to be a strong source of inspiration for me.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Before and After Glazing and Firing

Before and After

The Kiln Gods were kind to me this time.

Friday, October 10, 2008

What Will It Be?

The pot is an old one I made a long time ago. The plant came from Sharon Smith, one of my ceramics instructors. For about a year it just sat there, doing nothing. So I ignored it. But now it's got these weird bud things on it. How did that happen? Now that I'm paying attention, the damned thing will probably die on me. But if it lives (our plants have to survive on "tough love") I'll let you know what it turned out to be.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Gathering Stuff

Susan and EJ went to an Estate Sale last week even though she was pretty sure everything would be picked over because it was late on the 2nd day. Fortunately for me she only had $40 cash with her so that kept her from buying more than one of these cool school posters at $15. It is about 3'x5', has some water stains but still looks great.

The Belgian story book intrigued her because instead of the characters having word balloons over their heads so you know who is talking, they have little character heads next to the text. Or maybe that's the way all story books are now. What do we know? We grew up with Dick and Jane.

Once she photographed the poster she had to go crazy with Photoshop. She told me she had planned to cut the poster up (it's paper glued on heavy canvas) to make book covers but now she's liking it the way it is.

Other loot acquired included old velvet-covered record album books, children's silverware, wooden weaving shuttles, a china doll head, a weird Kewpie doll with one (broken) arm, and some mysterious old tools. All in all, a good haul.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The A-Team Takes a Break

When the weather is good I take a class break outside by the loading dock instead of inside the student lounge. And that's when I catch up with my A-Team. On the left is Jason, one of the best lab techs I've met. He can fix any machine, put together anything you need, and he's a good artist also. On the right is Ben, a sculpture instructor at ACC, who has always given me positive feedback and encouragement. You can check out his work here.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Roadrunner Recycling

It was a long, hot drive from Phoenix back home in August. The one thing we look forward to (other than safely making it home) is the Las Cruces Roadrunner. He is poised for take-off at the IH 10 East rest stop, just before Las Cruces, New Mexico.

He was made from totally recycled items from the old Las Cruces city dump when it closed about 8 years ago. I really wanted Susan to take more pictures, including one of me standing under him. His chest is way over my head so that picture would have given you a better idea of his size (about 20 feet high). But she balked and headed back for the car, muttering something about the warning fence we stepped over to get closer to him, something about the sign saying "Beware of Snakes."

You can get an idea of his size from the last picture which shows what his chest is made up of. Nice job of recycling!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Bird Man

I like to think I'm a creative guy but the fabric was Susan's idea.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Where I Do What I Do

One bonus of taking ceramics classes at ACC (Austin Community College) is a spacious working environment and supportive, encouraging instructors. Another bonus is the collective creativity generated from all the students in my classes.

ACC is housed in an old building that used to be Austin's only high school.

The ceramics classroom is in the basement.

John makes big pots. Very big posts. Sharon Smith is one of my instructors and she gives killer critiques. She and I agree that when someone says, "Oh, how cute!" you might want to re-think what you are doing.

Mary and I do battle over the few free parking spots in front of the school. To get one I usually have to show up before dawn. I think Mary just parks her car there the night before and sleeps in her car. I've only beat her to the free spots about twice.
A new dude, standing in front of some of John's big pots.

Your faithful old dude, working away on his little dudes.