Anne Foulke, the artist behind Clay Decor, LLC, has just uploaded new videos! Watch a clay tile being created, get a glimpse into the studio, or check out how glass tiles are made!
Meet the latest in modern classic combinations: commercial mosaic tiles and handmade tile medallions with frames.
Mosaics are a popular trend in backsplashes for their beauty and ease of installation. The latest in kitchen design combines many materials, where stone, glass and ceramics live in harmony. With all the choices in mosaics and customization in handmade artwork, homeowners are able to create completely unique personalized spaces. Handmade tiles are the ultimate in couture: Clay Decor offers custom designs, custom sizing, custom glazes, and custom shapes. Throw in a dash of mosaics, and watch your kitchen sparkle!!
Mosaics can provide the perfect backdrop to handmade tiles of all sizes:
Mosaics can also be used as a matting in between handmade tile and handmade tile moldings:
Unusual mosaic tiles set in a herring bone pattern work well with a custom-cut handmade medallion. The tile was originally a rectangle, but cut to an oval, and paired with handmade molding frames.
I am a HUGE fan of architectural salvage. If awesome old homes are going to be destroyed, at least craftsmanship from the past can be preserved in pieces. My favorite source is Gothic City Antiques in Buffalo, NY. Our latest project for the studio involved taking apart an old stair banister & spindles and reconstructing them at a different slope, adding salvage newel posts, and melding an exterior railing/spindle to the works.
#1 Ceramics Monthly: This fabulous magazine has been a staple since I graduated from college. It features inspirational work of other ceramic artists, as well as a wealth of technical information. If I need a new glaze, I usually find it from Ceramics Monthly. Also a great place to find workshops and equipment. #2 Veranda: Oh the luxury of this magazine! And I'm not talking the ads. The photography in this magazine is a feast of color and composition. Just seeing the cover gives me an idea of what colors/shades are trending. The articles give a peak inside classic designs in the most elite environments. It's not that I want my work to be a bastion of the wealthy, rather a translation of the look and feel of this magazine in some small way.
#3 This Old House Magazine: I LOVE old houses. The architecture and attention to detail, especially carved embellishment, never fail to fascinate me. This magazine is a celebration of craftsmanship by hands of the past and present. I find wonderful ideas for restoration and re-use of salvaged materials for modern living. As most of my work is inspired by designs of the late 1800s and early 1900s, I love the historical connections this magazine provides.
As an aside, I have tried to read fashion magazines...yawn... When you dress in T-shirts/sweatshirts and jeans to work in 'dirt' everyday, one tends to loose interest. :)
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. :)