Monday, November 11, 2019

The Art of the Small Pitcher

Here is a fun little pitcher from my latest firing.My hand shows the relative size. 
As I went to the icebox this morning to add milk to my tea, and I had to lift up the whole carton, I thought " a pitcher would be a handy thing about now". But not this pitcher, this one goes up to the gallery.
All around the base are the hand carvings of the red rocks of Sedona, AZ, that I see outside my studio. I have also incorporated this design into my mugs , with the turquoise glaze, and the oxide to color it.This is high fired porcelain clay so it can go into the stove of microwave.I used a clear glaze inside so the  contents are visible . It is actually the clay itself with a clear glaze over.
Of course it is totally food safe. Standards are very high in our country for glaze materials. Who knows what you get in a store or which  country they are made in and what are their rules? 
Since this is our Veterans' Day holiday, I would say "Support 
our service people... and your local artists! "

Saturday, October 19, 2019

The White Pueblo

I just unloaded my kiln and  found  this little jewel, my
"White Porcelain pueblo".  It is made from porcelain,

This style of my handmade bowls came from my artistic imagination and the environment I live in.The color you are seeing is actually the clay itself, with a clear glaze over. I like the smooth, modern feel of this basic image. 
As I say in my description tag, "...This is the view from outside my studio here in Sedona, AZ. I see our town, or pueblo, red rock silhouettes , cactus, and critters .The outer stain is the red iron oxide that colors our red rocks."  There is a bit of artistic license here, but truly this is what I see all around me. The critter is a little snake, which lives somewhere around  here, even when we don't see him. 
 I find with clay, it often tells me how to shape it. I make this style in three sizes. All fit so nicely in your hand,  and the clear color shows off  food or other items one might hold within. Although there is a similarity in my style within  this series, each pot is totally a one of a kind, signed by yours truly, V. Norton.

The White Pueblo

Sunday, September 29, 2019

The Art of Nature

 This is me at a local lake in the white mountains here in Arizona.With the rain,  I am  garbed in my poncho and hat. It is always necessary to be prepared when one is at an altitude of 7,000 feet. What causes these trees to be so green? Yup: water. 
Off in the distance are Canadian geese eating out at their  delicious cafeteria.  Native wildflowers surround me. The smell of the pine trees waft over the breeze that comes with force, and then dies down. This is my first time to explore this area, and I am enchanted. 
I write in my artist Biography : " I draw my inspiration from the native landscapes, people and animals, to create my present and evolving works in clay". Here is nature painted in a broad brush stroke. I am in awe of all the different climate in my home state. I am filled with gratitude to be here.  
 I am surrounded by the White Mountain Apache tribal lands, which are left mostly natural, except for those black cattle you run into on the back trails. They have a casino and I did explore  into their towns. A lot of change in the last 100 years, is all I can say.
I guess I  wrote about this area because it is nature in a rather pure form and that is good for my head, my soul, and I hope my art. 

Monday, September 2, 2019

Beads of Many Colors

Isn't this a cunning use of beads of many colors and dimensions? I've always made jewelry from my ceramic beads, but this past year I have added other sources to my new designs. Each set is a one of a kind.
 There are the four bone pieces that add a touch of tribal look to this. Then come the brown beads made of  tigers' eye stone. I find these a little dense in color,  so adding the yellow  glass beads gives them a nice contrast with the variations of the tigers' eye.The necklace is @ 16"  in length, and the earrings have a nice ability to catch the sun and make one feel well dressed. 
I like the immediacy of making this jewelry. With clay it takes a month to make it, then it has to  be fired once, then again high fired  to finish it. Here the time is in choosing, trying, rejecting, trying again until finally, the whole pattern pleases me. It is now for sale in a gallery, but I can tell you how to find it.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Rumi 's Words in my Calligraphy

Here is an example of my calligraphy that uses the words of one of my favorite poets, Rumi. A 13 th century Persian poet, scholar, and Sufi mystic, he is one of the more popular and best selling poets in the world. Perhaps even here in Sedona, AZ.   
I was doing this piece for a client, so they chose the alphabet. It is called  Foundational . English calligrapher, Edward Johnston, started teaching this in the Central School of arts and Crafts in 1899. It was the beginning of the modern study of calligraphy as an art form. This was an alphabet I taught at NAU. Now most of you turn to your computer to write out everything. But look closely, isn't this similar to one of the fonts that you often choose ? 
As the artist, I  added the flourishes. After all, I have to have some fun, and show where the human hand differs from the machine.   
I like this quote because we all seek certain elusive answers to our life's challenges, especially depending on what is going on in our lives. I will end this blog with another quote of his: "Yesterday I was clever so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself."