An unsmooth travel debacle smoothed out by Design Sponge

Right now I should be having a cuppa with friends in Dublin, Ireland.  Instead I had a more typical stand-by ticket kind of day with much travel hiccups sprinkled on top for added fun - so I'm home.  I'm going to try to get on a flight tonight !

So, waking up this morning after a 17 hour day at the airport  - I was a tad cranky and very very tired - (up all night trying to deal with Aer Lingus - which I highly recommend not flying - they have ZERO customer service.  Zeee ROOOW).  I got a spike of sales in my Etsy shop and thought - wow, awesome!  Really took a bite out of the Air Lingus money down the drain debacle.

Then I found out I was featured on Design Spongeand the dim light bulb flashed - ohhhhhh !

Really feels great !  A blog I admire and read - I really appreciate the exposure and feel humbled and grateful to be recognized !

ok - I need fingers & toes crossed; 1. that I am not getting sick -cough- cough.  noooooo, please.  and,  2. that the rest of the travel plans go smoothly.  beg, plead.

Thank you, Design Sponge!!

V&A, Leach pottery and anything thing else I can get my eyes on . . . heading to the UK

Heading to London/Ireland/London/Cornwall/London !

Of course, I am going to do my ceramic research, visit the V&A, Wallace Collection, I'll also have a change to go to the National Museum of Ireland.  I plan to visit Greenwich, the National Maritime Museum, indulge some of my personal historic interests there and at the British National.

I hope to visit the Leach Pottery Center in St. Ives as well, the Barbara Hepworth Gardens/Tate.

I can be pretty industrious on trips like these - so wish me luck - planes/trains & automobiles !

If you are interested in following me on instagram -  I will also try to facebook bomb, so please join me.

lindafaheycerams on Instagram 

There will be so much to take in - I'll do my best to capture a bit of it.

Any valuable tips of what not to miss - please, let me know !

The Shipwright's Mug

I just am so buoyed, so inspired and excited by working with this wood/ceramic relationship.  I am so attracted to how it looks, the marriage of the two materials - in a gushy kind of way.  

I call it the Shipwright's Mug.  I know, I'm romanticising here.  

  1. A person who designsbuilds and repairs ships, especially wooden ones.

    • A shipwright is one who builds or repairs ships using whatever materials are available including, but not limited to wood, metal, plastic, and concrete. / A master shipwright is one who has learned to use his skills with precision and is capable of teaching them to others. His knowledge includes mathematics, mechanics, and the use of tool; they also include the application of imagination, ingenuity, creativity, and vision of what can be

    Musing about Mud

    I can tell you waking up to seeing my work on Monday Morning eye candy is such an awesome treat !
    It just feels so exciting, I mean, we are talking MUSING ABOUT MUD here !!!!!  So excited and inspired!

    Putting a little swing in my step!

    Also if you haven"t listened to Carole's interview over at Ben Carter's Blog, I highly recommend it,  Makes this even more cool for me!

    Thank you so much Carole,  

    bloggin on down the line

    Hi.  How are you guys?

    I haven't been here for a while.  In fact, a long while.  I have been spending way too much time in the fast paced communication super highway loved and hated by all . . . facebook.

    There were a few reasons for my 'vacation' from blogging.  First one being I spent a lot of time writing this blog at my old job, desk job.  I had that kind of time; all day to kill kind of time sitting at a desk.  That changed drastically once I started working for myself, at home.  Secondly, I went for the quick fix facebook/pinterest scenario - short bursts of interaction which seemed to fit what was happening for me this last year.  The third reason; I was not able to talk about the process/project I was working on with Anthropologie over this last year.  It was part of the agreement.  A lost opportunity in my opinion.  But there you are.  I miss you blog.  I miss you blogger community, blog world.  I do.

    I'm still processing all that happened before, during and right now,  after Anthro.

    Whatever my thoughts - it's out there, the catalog came out this month.   The photo layout is beautiful.  More than I expected or could have imagined.
    I wish I could talk about it with you guys.   I learned so much.  And, I've experienced quite a range of response.  And I realized just how much I have yet to learn.  whew.  Anyway . . . on we go.

    In other news, coming out in April - "The Flower Recipe Book" will be out.  You can find it here.
    Lucky me, and some friends, were approached by the Studio Choo gals to use our vessels for shots in the book.  Kind of cool.  Keep your eyes on the Studio Choo gals.  Big things up ahead.

    In the book:
    Vince Montague
    Sharon Virtue
    and some other local ceramic artists
    I hope you'll check it out.

    ps. I hope to start swimming with the fishes more often.

    To count one's spoons

    Oh, "to count one's spoons", and idiom about whether or not someone has stolen from you after a large party, at least that's what I found after all the spoon jokes and idioms I've been dodging.  I suspect English and it smacks of Georgian or Victorian, does it not?  There are a lot of spoonisms, that's for sure.

    Apparently, spoons have been in use since paleolithic times.  Some of the first spoons are believed to have been shells.  The English etymology of the word spoon appears to be Anglo Saxon or old English "spon" - I'm paraphrasing here and writing from memory.

    In my phonetic world, "spon" rhymes with spawn - this is where English can be complicated - I'm definitely in the middle of spawning some spoons.

    1250 to be exact.  I'm making 1250 spoons with driftwood handles for one order and a few extra orders of 200 or so more for good measure.  What that means is right now I am all spoons, all the time - and it may not seem like a big deal to the production artists out there - but 1250 of anything is a big deal for me.  At this point, anyway.   Isn't it easy to imagine there would be some fun days and some dark days.   One can lose thier mind counting their spoons . . . over and over again.  I say with humor, the dark days are still steeped in excitement and fun.  I mean, I'm doing what I love to do for "my day job", and hope that I will continue to do so heading into the new year.

    The 1250th spoon is on that top shelf.  I can get approx 600 spoons in a firing - that is after I've loaded the kiln.  Think of setting up 600 dominos - but before you get to the end, maybe number 500 or so, you tip over one of the dominos. . . imagine dropping one of the dominos down the side of the kiln and you have to fish it out - so you have to unload the whole kiln and start again.  Try that three times for one kiln load.  Oooh, ooh, ooh, it's like going on a spirit journey.

    I can't yet give details on where the spoons are going; I will say a big retail outfit and after all the hard work, finding the wood, creating a wood shop along side my ceramic studio and having the experience of working on a big project, working with assistants, problem solving and having spoon dreams, it's all good news.

    "To count one's spoons", oh yeah.  I'm counting my spoons, but not before they hatch ;-) 

    New Work

    A few examples of new work.  I've been folding in some vintage decals - it's a marriage of the masculine/feminine styles of my work - I love the collage feel and the juxtaposition of old and new!

    more to come.

    Super funny ! total genius.

    go watch this video. . . Captain Ceramics 

    The best time of year

    porcelain/found driftwood handmade spoons/linda fahey

    porcelain/found driftwood spreaders/knives-linda fahey

    Cheese/bread/app board w/porcelain driftwood spreader - linda fahey
    New work - linda fahey

    I love Fall !  It's always been my favourite time of year for many reasons.  One of them is that it's truly scarf&beanie season!  yay.  I have a thing for a smart scarf&beanie.  The waves are back, the ocean is awake and I like having a bit of weather.  And I can't forget pomegranates - really, the number one reason I love the Fall.  I'm a happy go lucky glutton.

    Summer seemed to go on  f o r e v e r  which would seem like a good idea, but there was always this feeling of wanting to get somewhere fast - like when you were a kid and on a long drive would ask your parents, "are we there yet?" Well, we are here and it's already clear it's going to be action packed.

    Here's what's on tap:

    Santa Cruz Sea Glass & Ocean Art Festival
    November 3&4
    At the Historic Cocoanut Grove, Santa Cruz

    Artisan Day at the Mercantile/Cavallo Point
    December 1,
    Cavallo Point Resort & Spa 

    Madrigalli Market Artisan Event
    Nov 30 & Dec 1st
    Historic Fire house on Pedro Point
    Pacifica, Ca

    Other news: making a HUGE order of driftwood spoons and additional pieces for delivery early 2013.
    I got a nice new big kiln.  I need to hire an undergrad/intern, very soon, and I need to get to the beach and find some wood!

    So, yeah, hello Fall, we are here, and it's time to get my ass in gear !

    Have I reminded you lately; go check out the gals at MudColony !  

    Ceramics Annual of America 2012, San Francisco

    This week/weekend, beginning with the Opening Reception, Thursday Evening is the Ceramics Annual of America at the Festival Pavilion at Fort Mason in San Francisco.

    Ceramics Annual of America Website  for info on artists, tickets, show times, location and parking.

    If you haven't had the chance to attend this show, but live in the Bay Area, or happen to be visiting, this show is a must see.   The CAA exhibition is presented by the California Ceramics Cooperative, a dedicated, grass roots organization formed by artists educators and curators who share a desire to invest in the future of the ceramic field by honoring recent history and focusing attention on the work of contemporary artists.   Showcasing many of the top contemporary ceramic artists as well as focusing attention on emerging artists.  

    I was there today helping set up Tiffany's show, so got a sneak peek.  Here are just a few shots I took in a hurry today.  I won't be able to attend because I am setting up table at Mill Valley.  

    Tiffany Schmierer
    Jeff Downing
    Jane McDonald
    Jane McDonald
    Lisa Clague
    Shalene Valenzuela
    Lisa Clague
    Susannah Israel
    Michelle Gregor
    Esther Shimazo 

    photos; Linda Fahey

    growing pains

    Grow, grow, grow.  move, change or die.  One thing that has become a daily reality check, sometimes a slap in the face is change is constant and seriously, it's on the move.  In the daily routine of the average  "day job" office-y setting the office/cube is a buffer from the full onslaught of change.  I suppose it's one the ways to get people to sit down and focus on the mundane day to day practices that is the corporate landscape.

    There is definitely no lack of change happening in my corner of the world.  It's been a roller coaster all year and it is about to get all loopty-loop.   Tighten your seatbelt, get your barf bag in hand and keep your eyes open.

    The illusive quest for balance becomes even more important under unusual circumstances, but often it's just about knuckling down and being flexible.

    I have a large (for me) order I will be taking on for the last quarter of the year, in addition to three events I have already committed myself.  I will have to hire some studio helpers.  WT hec?  Did I miss something?  I've been thinking a lot about how and where they can help in the most efficient way.  I am hoping to get some ceramic undergrads are pretty much turn-key.  I have so many questions about being a "manager" of my own work - I'm still trying to figure out my own stuff, let alone direct someone around what I haven't figured out yet ;-).  For starters, how to effectively utilise their time in an efficient way so we both get the most out of that time worked.  And that being successful is all about managing that time, having a handle on the process, aaaccckkk...the planning necessary, the short turn around for delivery - its a steep learning curve.

    I have to get my business brand, labelling, packaging super dialed in.  ugh, and I know there are things I don't know that I don't know and will not forget to remember ;-)

    advice welcome and encouraged about pitfalls, little known facts, pearls of wisdom, the invaluable information hidden between the obvious knowns. . .

    The pics - just a pitcher I really like.  new tea strainers (I am a tea freak) and spoons.  The spoon factory is going to be running full steam!

    A few new things

    This week marked one year since being made redundant - to put it nicely.  And what a year.

    It's been a roller coaster ride, make no mistake - I confess I like rolling hills more than huge highs and lows.  I think it's kind of fun when you hit a crest and your stomach jumps up. . . but you can keep the loop-de-loos.

    I've got a packed schedule for the remainder of the year, and I just bought a new and bigger kiln.  yay!

    Progressively, I've been working on some new things - trying some ideas.  Some of them stared out as just for fun - fooling around in the studio, creating yet another distraction, and an effort to use some of the slab scrap from my working process.

    So here we have:
    Tea strainers - I like em, like making them, thinking they kind of have to be unglazed.
    Cake servers & cake stands (actually, without the stand part ;-)).   But I can't just call it a cake, so, I am calling them Hatbox Cake Stands.  I'm interested in some of the really modern simple forms of the Scandinavian potters - and I like the idea of the cake stand mimicking the bottom tier of a cake.

    I'm going to keep going on these and see whether they generate some interest.

    The Good Folks at MUDCOLONY Blog

    There is a lot going to over at the MUDCOLONY BLOG  - a lot of clay bloggers posting in one place. Makes it easy to keep up on what your peers are up to all over the world.  They do not discriminate against hemispheres !

    Check it out !!

    Mill Valley Fall Arts Festival around the corner.

    On track for the Mill Valley Fall Arts Festival.  It's a new show for me.  I've heard only good things - so really excited and looking forward to it !!

    btw - can you believe we are anywhere near September - where does the time go?

    for more info - click the link below.

    Strictly Functional musings via FetishGhost Secret Studio

    Friendly reminder: visit   FetishGhost Secret Studio 

    This is the man, Joel Blum, aka Zygote Blum, aka FetishGhost.
    His work is original, signature and beautiful!  His blog is thoughtful, insightful, and an inspiration.

    His recent post about his bid for the 2012 Strictly Functional show is worth calling attention to for readers.  I'm a big proponent of critique - though it can sting at times, it can also be truly liberating.  There is a real art to giving a well constructed, thoughtful critique.  Of course, not all "critiquers" are created equal and some, well, frankly suck and can be very counter productive.  But, man it's great when you get a good one, even by degree, and can glean out a pearl.

    Get on the FetishGhost train . . . it's a great blog and worth keeping an eye on.

    I think Joel will make CM one of these days.  

    beating a dead horse: photographing work

    Renegade in Los Angeles; in a word. . . HOT!  99 degrees hot.  Gnarly.  Thank god for the Popsicles.  We were not prepared for it.  I suspect it had some collective effect on the crowd.

    Sharon and I both did about the same - slow and steady throughout the weekend.

    Anyway - there was a conversational theme that wafted throughout the weekend; photographing work.
    Rarely do I get feedback from a new customer, but I did.  One who bought a lot of my work and obviously likes it.  "You're photos on your Etsy sight don't do your work any justice, they aren't good enough".    I agreed.  I agree.

    The other discussion was the "It's time to have your work photographed".  
    No more of your DIY photos.

    I tend to balk at photographic commitment.

    If I'm going to spend a fair amount of money and the shots are just going to be on a backdrop?

    I dunno.  Flavor of the week: bright white background.

    I welcome comments/ideas/personal experience