It's been awhile since I posted a studio update, even though I've been taking copious notes during my marathon Sundays in the studio.
I have a lot to get done this year, but before I did anything, I needed to work on some project to stock my shop for awhile as I handle some work that will likely consume a lot of my *free throw* time. So in January, I've been cranking them out. Bowls, jewelry pieces, vases, the usual. Then I had a great idea. Why not work a little of my new age preoccupations into my work? It works within my brand to create things I might actually use, too. So in January, I worked on two items that I've never worked on before. Smudge bowls and incense holders.
Smudging is a practice used by a variety of religions and spiritually minded folks to "cleanse" an environment. Native Americans use the practice to clear away negative spirits in a home or otherwise sacred space. Buddhists and Christians may burn certain herbs or resins to prepare a space for a religious ritual or prayer. Wiccans often smudge to cleanse the spirit and the surrounding environment. It's something I've done for nearly a decade now, and I'm intrigued by how many people practice this spiritual exercise very quietly.
When you smudge, you take your herb of choice, commonly sage, or cedar or sweetgrass or a combination of several historically cleansing scents, lite a bit of it, rest it in a smudge bowl or smolder-proof container, and allow the smoke to work its way through a room, or space. I came up with my own design for a functional bowl to use for smudging, and I'll be sharing the fruits of that labor, soon.
The incense holders were a subset of the desire to make my own smudge bowls. We all know incense. No explanation required there.
So here's where everything stands as of Feb. 3rd:
* six Kiddush cups currently being glaze fired hopefully as we speak
* five more Kiddush cups currently setting and waiting for bisque fire
* eight smudge bowls waiting for bisque fire
* two incense holders waiting for bisque fire
* three small, slender decorative pieces waiting for bisque fire
* fifteen ornaments waiting to be glazed (early prep for Christmas 2011)
So um yeah...I've been a lil busy. Best thing to happen this month was my instructor's acknowledgment that I'm getting even closer to "production" level efficiency in throwing. *insert giant grin here*
I'll be back on Superbowl Sunday to update. And yes. I'll be multitasking. GO STEELERS!