Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Walnford Winter

December 15th...65 degrees? After spending the day working in my garden yesterday, today I decided to stay home to get some painting done for an upcoming show. Outside my studio window now, huge snowflakes fall...finally winter...maybe, who really knows....still, I can't say I didn't enjoy getting one last full day of unexpected gardening in yesterday...I moved about a dozen perennials, divided a few, cleaned up a bunch of dead stuff, scattered some seeds and cleared out litter blown into the wetlands...I was hoping to move just one more tree today before the ground froze up again, but mother nature has other ideas it seems...so it will have to wait. In the meantime, this picture is one of my photos I took for reference a few winters ago. It is a well know scene around my neck of the woods...The Historic Walnford Mill in Upper Freehold, NJ. This image will be featured as a limited edition of 25 signed prints available at the Winter Group Show at the Artful Deposit Gallery in Bordentown, NJ in early 09...more details on the show dates and times to come (to pre-order by phone, you can call the gallery directly at 609-298-6970.)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Rainy winter days . . .

I could do a painting on this new bowl....I get so lost in the glazes.....Will this rain ever end? I am on an endless and thus far extremely unsuccessful mission to find a good pizza dough recipe. I have tried at least 20. I thought maybe it was my oven wasn't hot enough, but last week, I bought frozen pizza dough and the results were amazing.......so I know it is possible......I have tried bread flour vs all purpose, sugar vs no sugar...today's attempt was from an Italian Farmhouse cookbook and called for 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil...it rose beautifully and looked and felt wonderful......but the results were a very dense dough.......pretty bad actually....if you know of any good pizza dough recipes that work, please send them my way.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

New Work . . .

Early Autumn, oil on canvas 6" x 6" 2008

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Lazy Sundays...

I love sunday mornings...finally not in a rush to get the kids out the door. I have been neglecting posting with the chaos of holiday responsibilities, complicated by one kid with walking pneumonia and the other breaking a front permanent tooth in half....the joys of motherhood. I have quite a few large bowls and platters I still need to mix up new glazes for, fire and get to the gallery. I do have a few new pieces up in my etsy shop and will be listing more in the following days . . . One thing I finally accomplished is a long overdue update of both of my websites...I love the iweb program from Apple...when I got my new iMac last month, I started revamping my sites, for simplicity's sake really. I finally caved and signed up for a yearly .mac account (now called mobile me)...I had been against it for years mainly for the $99 annual fee...but I am at the point now, that whatever I can do to simplify gives me more time to make art. Their server does seem to be a little slow which is very bothersome, considering the size of their company and how much you pay for the service, but I am trying to be optimistic that this will not aways be the case. The really bad thing about the iweb program, is they do not make it very easy to publish your site to just any hosting server....I currently have my own hosting server and after waisting many hours trying to make everything work together, I finally just gave up and made my personal domains forward to the new iweb sites on my mac account. BUT the ease of updating the images and adding new work with so much less up front work on my end, is making this definitley worthwhile so far...so check out the new sites....fine art: www.elmstudios.com and illustration: www.erickaorourke.com...and let me know what you think.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

New Work . . .

This is one of my latest small (6 x 6") oils . . . This image was inspired by one of my trips to Assunpink Wildlife Management Area in New Jersey. It is now available for purchase at the Artful Deposit Gallery in Bordentown City NJ.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

blog feature!

Check it out! I am featured on a blog this week...friago.com.
Always exciting to find out! 

Friday, October 24, 2008

Jude Harzer

My friend Jude is a wonderful woman and very talented New Jersey artist...Please check out her work at her website and try to stop in to her upcoming opening...
Gallery 638
638 Arnold Ave. Pt. Pleasant Beach NJ 
Opening Reception:
November 15, 2008 4-8pm

Friday, August 29, 2008

new raku!

Well, I think my pyrometer is not working....the other day, I mixed up a batch of new glazes and the results were not what I had expected....they were nice actually, but just nothing like they were supposed to be. So I was trying to figure out what could have gone wrong...I decided to try doing a firing based on my old time method instead...pulled the pieces exactly 30 minutes after firing up and I managed to pull a few very nice new pieces! Always a nice way to end a raku session! So now I am trying to figure out if my pyrometer is broken, or if I am just not using it correctly, which is always a possibility! Also brought a bunch of new stuff, mostly stoneware to Artful Deposit in Bordentown...Paintings are on the way there too, just need to get the framing finished! These 2 raku pieces here have been listed in my etsy shop!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Chip and Dip

I love this new serving set...perfect for salsa or dip and chips...I made the bowl separate for versatility and easy cleaning...check it out in my etsy shop!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Fleur Relic Earrings!

Finally got the first of my new earrings up available on my etsy shop! I made the stamps used to make the impressions in these porcelain earring myself! More to come!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Very delayed post . . .

Summer days are flying by, and I am finding it hard to keep up with so many things, let alone posting. We just got back from Maine and it was great...I wish we were still up there. Not liking the humid New Jersey weather. Been finally making some jewelry again in anticipation of the upcoming holiday shopping season, but I guess I have to make more, because it sells whenever I list it...Can't complain there! I have also started listing some prints for sale in my etsy shop as well. They are more affordable than originals and I have had some requests for them...Here is a new one from a series I am working on...Poppy Fields I...

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

friday night raku

This friday June 20th I will be hosting a live raku demonstration for the Allentown Art Guild. For more information check out the website www.allentownartguild.org...Some more new work below...this one is now up on my etsy shop! This vase is white crackle on top with a beautiful copper cobalt on the bottom...one side of the vase that received a heavier reduction has much more copper, but the other side has the cobalt...pretty cool.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

new work: raku tea bowls

I love the combination of a white crackle with the copper matt glazes...this little tea bowl, has the most beautiful center. It is now up for sale in my etsy store...much more to come. I am starting to experiment with a new raku recipe for a rich cobalt/copper flashing glaze, so I will put those up in the next few days....We have been firing up the raku kiln often on these nice spring evenings as it is my favorite weather to raku...it gives you a perfect reason to just sit outside and enjoy the air.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Fresh from the kiln . . .

After a couple of tweaks, I got the raku kiln firing up great. I made a few pendants and many new pieces that will be going up for sale in my etsy shop in the next few days...These are mostly done with a Rainbow Copper glaze that I mixed up...I will be testing a white crackle, hopefully a turquoise crackle as well, and a nice new cobalt recipe next firing...which may not be for a couple of days with the weather forecast...

Monday, May 26, 2008

Spring Raku Evenings . . .

Well, I fired up my re-lined raku kiln for the first time this weekend and I am happy to say that I am back in business...I am looking forward to getting my growing stockpile of wares fired and to get some more raku jewelry underway as well...It was a beautiful day to raku...as I was getting all of my raku gear out of my shed, I ran into the culprit of last year's shredded raku kiln living in my shed again...he was very brazen and even waited while I went to grab my camera...

below is a picture of my platform for the raku kiln made up of cinder block and then fire brick...

That's me placing the red hot 1700 degree pottery into the can of combustibles . . .Fun Fun!

And the prize shot of the evening . . . "Hot Pants" . . . a lot of hazardous gas expulsion around Raku jokes and headlines were tossed around with this shot...but thankfully I am not really on fire or emitting fire...just a cool accidental double exposure shot of me while I was running around ;-)

Raku vessels waiting for glazing . . .

One of the finished bowls below . . . this one just got listed in my etsy store!

To learn more about the Raku process and philosophy, you can check out my Raku web page...

Monday, May 19, 2008

Stormy Weather

I just love storm clouds . . . you can't beat the lighting for anything. I just took these shots a few weeks ago while driving home. The weather has been anything but predictable . . . but I did get in about an hour of yard-sale shopping in yesterday before it let go and everyone quickly put away the good stuff . . . I did manage to get one awesome find though . . . A huge box of thousands of gorgeous sea shell that were hand-picked by some local scuba divers for only $3! Yard sales are the best! Now I am thinking about what to do with them . . . okay, done with my coffee, time to get some work done . . .

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Ready to Raku (again...)

We had a beautiful day here yesterday for our Art Yard Sale and I mananged to get rid of quite a few glaze testers and seconds...just in time for the next influx. I made the careless mistake of storing my hand-built raku kiln on the floor in my storage shed. It never even occurred to me that mice would find the fiberglass heat blanket that lines the kiln as luxury bedding. I hate even touching the stuff. But I was left with a shed of shredded fiberglass and no raku kiln. Live and learn I guess...But finally I have relined the kiln and we are ready to go! Below is a pic of some bisque-fired pots waiting to be glazed . . .

Friday, May 16, 2008

Busy Spring Days . . .

I don't know if I am coming or going lately . . . it has been busy all around . . . I am working on a few bookcovers that I need to wrap up as quickly as possible. This saturday, oops that's tomorrow isn't it, I will be participating in the Allentown Art Guild's Art Yard Sale, which is basically an informal show to clear out our studios. I have been trying to get somewhat of a vegetable garden in, which I am happy to say I just managed to finish yesterday in time for the rain. It will be a small one this year, as I am in the process of killing a lot of grass to make room for lots of new plantings and walking paths through the garden. I am currently waiting on 1 ton of mulch to be delivered to create the beds. It is like having a nice blank canvas to work with and I am very exciting to start laying it out. Here is a little garden pic from yesterday . . . seems we are all busy right now ;-)

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Tiger Lily Dream . . .

Finally springtime is here! I have been very busy in the garden and cleaning up the wetlands ... The purple loosestrife is really taking over and I am trying to pull them out by hand now. It is such a shame that it is such an invasive species as it is so beautiful in bloom in august...It has gotten so out of control over the last 5 years, we can hardly see the creek at all now in the winter, all you see is the dead loosestrife plants. We have seen a lot of frogs this year so far as well as small fish and newts. The other day, we actually saw a common brown watersnake ambush an unsuspecting frog that had been sunning on the side of the creek....fortunately for the frog, he was too large a meal for the snake to put down and after 20 minutes, the snake finally let him go...

On the art front, I have been working more on my wetland series of paintings . . . I have finally posted this ceramic/art piece up for sale in my etsy shop, sometimes it takes me awhile to part with them . . . it is a large slab formed hand-painted tile inspired by the tiger lillies...the back is constructed so that the piece can be hung directly on a wall, or of course it can be displayed on an easle or actually installed as a tile...

Thursday, April 17, 2008

News Article Today: TIME OFF

There was a nice write up today in the TIME OFF section of the Messenger Press Newspaper featuring my "Iris" painting that is in the current Gallery 125 show...check it out here!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Upcoming Show at Gallery 125

I was one of the artists accepted into the Spring Show at Gallery 125 in Downtown Trenton, NJ...There is an Opening Reception scheduled on Friday April 11th from 5-9 pm...The exhibit runs from April 9th to June 7th 2008...for more info on the gallery as well as directions - here is the link! Gallery 125

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Fresh From the Kiln . . .

New test glazes...a very successful firing! I am experimenting with a few new recipes, and I am very happy with the results so far...the sienna mug below is listed for sale in my etsy store, while the large coral inspired bowl is currently available at the Artful Deposit Gallery in Bordentown. I will be listing smaller versions of this bowl within a month or so on etsy....

Monday, March 10, 2008

Fun with Fiber Art

Fiber Art by Hanneke De Neve

Over the weekend, I attended a fiber art workshop taught by a wonderful artist, Hanneke De Neve. It was so much fun...we pretty much turned the gallery into huge mess of fabrics...I will post the finished piece when it is done...but here are some pics from the day...and some of Hanneke's art...definitely worth checking out!
Hanneke's Webpage

Friday, February 29, 2008

New Work

I don't usually work so close up with florals on such a large scale, but funny, I actually prefer the detail of the painting as a painting by itself...this piece is currently on display in the Spring Exhibit for the Allentown Art Guild Show...

24" x 30"

Saturday, January 19, 2008

It's cold outside . . .

Every year when it gets cold, our migratory snow geese population flocks to Conine's Pond. They are amazing to see and hear...I have been documenting them with nighttime photo shoots for a few years now.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

New Work

Just a couple of my new paintings to be included in the upcoming Winter show . . .

Sunday, January 13, 2008

"Winter" A Group Show

Come check out the group show "Winter" at the Artful Deposit Gallery in Bordentown, NJ...The promo image is one of my fine art prints which will be available in a s&n limited edition of 25. The image is of the willows trees overlooking Indian Run Creek in Allentown, NJ.