Stuff I Love! What Inspires My Work

I'm starting a new blog category to share all of the influences that inspire me on a day to day basis.  As an artist, I hungrily consume visual and kinesthetic (touch) experiences. I love color, rich saturated hues (not white, not tan..blech).  I'm so happy those kitchens with white cabinets and splashes with my Gloss White glaze have gone out of vogue.  Not that it was an ugly look, it was very clean.   Those subtle colors just seem to subdue my large designs, and I much prefer to have color to liven-up a space.  Then again, I'm not a quiet person.  I wear purple eye shadow (every day), and have red hair (dyed not to look natural, I hope), and I can happily talk your ear off if given the chance.  :)

I'm not a huge fan of pattern as it seems visually 'noisy' to me, so when you see my more elaborate tiles, they will always be draped in a consistent glaze.  What I love about pattern, is when it is raised, i.e. when it is a texture.  I don't like a repeated design painted on fabric, but embroider the same design, especially with a heavy wool or silk thread, and I'm drawn to it.  This is why my repeating designs (like Anaglypto) are more inspired by a repetition of texture that glaze reacts to, rather than a pattern contrasted with background like in hand-painted examples.

To this end, I love luxury that is beautiful but touchable.  At a recent trade show, people kept coming up to the glass Concordia and touching the surface.  I was thrilled!  Creating an interaction of the visual and the kinesthetic connects me, connects my work, to the outside world.  This is why I insist on carving my own wood tile molds, rather than using a carving machine (CNC), and refuse to use a tile press instead of my own hands to form the tiles and sinks.  I need to touch the wood, interact with the lines as they take shape, feel the depth and texture of the design.  When pressing the tiles, I feel the clay being worked into the mold, my finger prints are on the backs of the tile as I manually refine the pressing.  Glazing is also an interaction of liquid flowing over the surface of the tile, whether I'm hand-dipping or pouring it over a larger piece.  As the heavy-cream consistency  of the glaze cascades over each design it creates a totally unique visual life for each piece.  If I tilt the same two tiles in different directions, the same designs and same materials become one of a kind, as liquid never flows the same way twice.

So this blog will focus on things that speak to me personally.  It's not that I think everyone should agree with my somewhat-odd preferences, but you will have a better understanding of the artist behind the artwork. :)