Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Getting caught up on commissions then on to new work

This summer has sure been a transition period for me. How to move on without Michael?

I saw that the Eagles are on tour. Who is replacing Glenn Frey? So I looked on the Eagles website and found out it is his son. As I scrolled through the website I saw the lyrics to this is song Glenn wrote. It was read at his funeral.  I feel a little connection to him because we lived across the street from him when we lived in Aspen on Snowmass Creek and his post office box was right next to ours at the Conoco. We would see him there often and he always spoke.

“It's Your World Now”
Written by Glenn Frey and Jack Tempchin
From the Eagles’ Long Road Out of Eden album

A perfect day, the sun is sinkin' low
As evening falls, the gentle breezes blow
The time we shared went by so fast
Just like a dream, we knew it couldn't last
But I'd do it all again
If I could, somehow
But I must be leavin' soon
It's your world now

It's your world now
My race is run
I'm moving on
Like the setting sun
No sad goodbyes
No tears allowed
You'll be alright
It's your world now

Even when we are apart
You'll always be in my heart
When dark clouds appear in the sky
Remember true love never dies

But first a kiss, one glass of wine
Just one more dance while there's still time
My one last wish: someday, you'll see
How hard I tried and how much you meant to me

It's your world now
Use well your time
Be part of something good
Leave something good behind
The curtain falls
I take my bow
That's how it's meant to be
It's your world now
It's your world now
It's your world now

Since Michael died last year I've sold cars, bought a car, refinanced our house, done plumbing, painted walls and a lot of other things that would have been Michaels jobs. I've also sold Carolina Creations, the business we built together and gave us such a great lifestyle the past 25+ years. 

I've done some traveling, had time to think about life and what's next. But before I can really move on to what's next I've got to finish the many commissions I've got on my plate, and get Carolina Creations restocked with pottery. 

Here are some of the pieces I've been working on since I returned from my 5 week trip to Michigan, NYC and Philadelphia.

These cake plates are in progress, then I need to paint mats for 2 wedding invitations. Then maybe I can do some new work. Whoops I forgot I need to do my 2018 calendar and an ornament.

But to soothe my anxiety I HAD to lay out some new small paintings. Starting small with 12 x 12 inch canvases because painting is just like anything you are trying to become proficient at, you have
to practice, practice, practice. Watercolors and clay I practice at all the time but oils aren't so easy to just pick up. So I laid out these canvases and will stare at them while I finish the rest of the jobs I have to do! I'll post them again when I finish.

Back to the introduction of this post, what I want to do in my world now is do some of the things I could never take the time to do while running Carolina Creations.

Become proficient at painting in oils.

Do garden sculpture.

Do mosaics.

In other words create some beauty to leave behind for others to enjoy and of course to satisfy my yearning to create.

Wednesday, September 06, 2017

Learning to throw

I was never interested in learning to throw, I never thought I had the patience, you have to practice, practice, practice, before you have anything to show for it.

I guess I never felt I had the time to learn.

Really the only reason I'm learning, or trying to learn now, is to make Michaels pansy rings!

People ask for them all the time.

We'll see if I can do it!

Today didn't look so great.....

But I did discover I'm good at centering and opening. I am surprised!

Monday, September 04, 2017

Thoughts on Retirement

I read with interest a blogpost by Lori Deschene - Tiny Wisdom: Taking Things Away 
“Beware the barrenness of a busy life.” -Socrates
Sometimes creating peace, happiness, or satisfaction has everything to do with what we choose to take away.
You can love the work you do, but if you overextend yourself, even the greatest passion can start to feel stressful and overwhelming.
You can adore your significant other, but if you spend all your time together, you’ll likely start to appreciate your relationship less and wonder what else there is.
You can value your spiritual practice, but if your life becomes all about contemplation and self-reflection, you may start to feel somewhat removed from other people and the physical world.
There are definitely times when need to do more; but sometimes the best thing we can do is scale back on what we’re already doing, create a better sense of balance and space to just be, and then see how we feel.

I’m not suggesting we should all take a hiatus from our lives, a la Eat, Pray, Love; I’m proposing that sometimes the answer has nothing to do with more and everything to do with less.
I guess that kind of sums up the state I've been in the last couple of years and what lead me to selling Carolina Creations. Michael being sick and then dying was the final straw. I realized I couldn't do it all anymore. 
So I decided it was time to retire and take away some of the stress. 
It doesn't really seem right to call what I'm doing retirement because I'm busy working every day - but working in my studio doing my artwork instead of advertising, bookkeeping, searching for new work for the gallery, waiting on our wonderful customers, etc. Right now I'm still trying to get caught up on my commissions but I'm looking forward to doing some of the paintings, sculpture, and pottery I've been wanting to do for a long time.
I haven't been home long enough to really get into the groove but I'm looking forward to it!


Thursday, August 31, 2017

Sallys Painting Party September 7, 2017

Carolina Creations Presents
Sally Sutton Painting Party
Garden Terrace 
Paint your own acrylic painting of this image on 11 x 14" canvas with artist Sally Sutton!
Thursday September 7 from 6:30pm - 9:00pm
Sip, snack and paint!
All supplies and snacks will be provided so all you need to do is be ready to enjoy some time with friends creating your own painting!

Sally will have the image drawn out on the canvas, she will lead you through painting it.
Wear clothing that is casual or bring an apron. Cost $55 

Location: Francoeur Studio, 229 E Front Street, New Bern "click here to see location on the map".  

Register here or by calling 252-633-4369.

If you get lost the evening of the party call 252-626-3376.
Due to the fact that the class size is limited cancelations must be made 48 house in advance so we can call people that are on our waiting list. For cancelations made less than 48 hours in advance - the fee will be held for you to use toward an upcoming painting party.
 $55 includes everything you need - refreshments and all supplies! 

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Mosaic Workshop in Philly with Isaiah Zagar

 I had a ball at a mosaic workshop with Isaiah Zagar in Philadelphia over the weekend.

I've been following his work for over 20 years and never imagined I would ever meet him no less do a mosaic with him!

We were doing the mosaic at St Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church in Philadelphia.

Isaiah, his grandson, and I.

We are outlining the drawing with mirror that we cut earlier in the day.

We were making such good progress he decided to add a mermaid.

We filled in with tiles that we had broken up into small pieces.

Here we are grouting.

Cleaning off the grout.

In a couple days Isaiah will come back and paint the lines back in you saw in the beginning!

A work in progress up stairs in his studio.

The outside of his studio on Watkins St.

Various mosaics around town.

The painted bride on Vine Street.

Back in the studio, upstairs apartment, he's got to get the floor done by tomorrow night!

Garage floor he drives on.

Every inch of his huge studio is covered with mosaic!!

More mosaics around town.

When in Philadelphia there are over 200 of his mosaics to see! And don't miss the Magic Garden on South Street - I've talked about it in an earlier blog post.

Now can't wait to try it on my own!!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

My visit to the NY Botanical Gardens and trip home

Viewed the Chihuly at the NY Botanical Gardens then drove to St Michaels to spend my last night on the road for this trip.

Not a bad way to go to work.

Headed to St. Michaels.

I look for any excuse to go for a boat ride.

What a wonderful trip! Now it's time for me to get back to work..... well after the weekend. Look for the next post where I'll show you what I did over the weekend!