Saturday, November 26, 2011

Getting Hammered

We've been a month in The Hammer and we're luvin' it. We have yet to start getting our studio ready for our work but with the move, Sheridan, Pinecroft and enjoying our new neighbourhood to be honest it can wait for a few more weeks. Here is a pic of our studio that was a two car garage so it is the same size as our other studio but this one will be all workshop with no showroom. We have a lovely courtyard with interlocking brick, a water fountain and lots of creepy crawlers like trumpet vines, and such. So the court yard will serve as our good weather showroom for special sales. We're enjoying life too much to want to go back to 7 day a week retail. 23 years of it was more than a person should be subjected to. The moment we left the studio we'd return to a note on the door- "We were here! Where were YOU????

One feature that was a negative for most is the train runs right behind our house. We love it!!!! It means there are no neighbours counting how many glasses of wine you have drank, you don't have a strip mall or a rowdy bar, a large apartment building where hundreds look down on you and in your windows. This is steel town and this morning there was a Canadian Pacific freight train with steel from the foundries that made this town. My grandfather Jack May worked for CP Rail. I thought of him this morning.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Mug and bowl

Today was our mug and bowl sale at Sheridan orchestrated by the Clay Club which  falls on the broad shoulders of the second year throwing class to pull off. I have one of the best second year classes in years so I knew they would be up for it and do a super job. We set up tables in front of the Tim Horton's license to print money coffee shop and sell our wares to raise money for guest artists, scholarships, travel, Nceca registration etc, etc. The second years were smart enuff to use this as a marketing exercise and recorded what sold and when! Marketing is an important part of being an artist. We had a steady line up of buyers and my feeling is there will be a cha-ching, cha-ching in the bank account.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Mrs. Claus

Well Mrs. Claus is starting to decorate. This will be our first Christmas in 23 years where we haven't sold pots from our studio. We're not going to miss the being home all day watching to see if a car is in the driveway but we are going to miss the cash. We're also going to miss the customers that came each holiday to buy their gifts, and exchange good wishes.

I went to Home Depot today and saw cars with Christmas trees on top. At our old studio we always bought a live tree and planted it after Christmas. Now that we are urban potters we don't have the land to plant trees. Interlocking brick courtyard and some decorative Japanese maples, lilacs and some white birch and that is our forest.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

My New Hood

We live just off Locke Str on Canada Str right smack dab in the middle of The Hammer, Steel Town, Art is the New Steel or The Lunch Bucket City. This is a blue collar town and what's sooooooo great about our area is it doesn't have any BIG BOX STORES. The small street Canada is alive and well. We have small shops that will tell ya how to cook your steaks. I've shown you a few of the little shops but I neglected to show you the number of dogs at Starbuck's this morning. Every yuppie has a dog, or two, or three and the dogs wear bandanas  to match their owner's  for Heaven's Sakes. I keep wanting to tell them I ate dog in China and it wasn't all that bad washed down with a Tsingtao or two.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Best of 3 Worlds

I've been super busy with the move and my change of life. I gotta say I am running from pillar to post but all seem to be great places to be. I'm teaching 3 days a week at Sheridan with an incredible bunch of students. We held the Hopper workshop on the weekend with 150 in attendance and then had a private day with Grass on Monday. He asked the students to dress for Halloween and they were all decked out. We had an intimate day with him that was really the icing on the cake of a great workshop. Since the closing of our studio I need to bridge the transition and have been spending 2 days a week with my cousin Brenda at Pinecroft trying to help her keep up with the demand for pots that have been built up there over the past 63 years. Here is a pic of my walk across the pond from the pottery to the showroom/restaurant for my yummy lunch.
Then the other two days of week we're settling into our urban downtown location. No big box stores in sight but a vibrant Locke Street that is full of great shops for chocolates, cheese, bagels, a glass of wine, a tankard of beer or just around the corner is Hess Village full of great dining establishments.
Hopefully by Christmas break I'll be putting our studio together. I'm starting to dream of new work and that's a good sign.