Monday, December 19, 2011

Commissioned Art

Shall we just say that the bowl was a good lesson to learn and leave it as that. It came out horribly.
I do think I learned something, more coats of glaze, and that I'll try it again. Again when I'm not rushed and a deadline isn't breathing down my neck ;)

As for the painting. I'm pretty pleased with it.
Let me share the progression with you all.
First was the sketch and loose color application in my prior post
Then I started another drawing and added washes of color

Slowly I built up the color and added details

a few more hours with it...

and the final.

I've put the paintbrush down, all ceramic orders are finished and on their way to be placed under Christmas trees. Lot 5 is officially closed until the New Year. Happy Holidays to all, may your New year be full of hope and all that you dream of become possible. See ya'll soon :)

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Cutting it Close

Christmas is just a little over a week away and we are still running the kiln getting our last minute ceramic orders out. Some mugs, a bowl and lots of ornaments. I really don't like cutting it this close, but to get enough for a kiln load takes time when you're not a full time production potter.

I'm trying something new with a bowl that is a custom request and something I haven't tried before. We'll see how it comes out, it all might run together and be a big mess, or it might blend beautifully and be a gorgeous flower. Oh kiln Gods please be kind!

I think investing in a smaller kiln to do little things might be something we seriously need to look into.

I'm also starting, working on and finishing a watercolor in these next two days. It's a house for friends of ours. They'll be gifting it to their parents. I want it to be everything they hope it to be. Not much pressure there ;)

Stage one, the photo :
It worked out perfectly for me to take my own reference photo's as Peter and I were in Delaware for a wedding and this house was on the shore just a few miles away from the wedding. Can you believe it was December, it looks so warm doesn't it!

Stage two, the sketch :

A quick free hand sketch.

I'm thinking I'll do a warm up with this and depending on how it goes either continue and tighten it up or begin another.

To be continued....

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

The Only one?

Does anybody else decorate their bathrooms at Christmas? I wonder, I've seen a lot of Holiday house tours, not many Christmas salle de bain's ;) Well I added a little cheer to Lot 5's powder room. Though orange isn't typically Christmas, it is the Pantone color of the year. Good to know Lot 5 is current with the trends even though I've liked it for years ;).
A white tree with simple frosted gold ornaments placed on our antique shelf above the "throne" with a mercury glass candle and some dried hydrangea. Simple touches that say holiday without overwhelming the visitor...and yes that's my Miss Molly at the sink having a drink of water. What is it about the running water that my furbabies love so much. They coming running whenever someone heads to the bathroom; Funny babies :)
Have you all seen all the holiday linked in parties? You must check them out, so much fun.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Christmas Lot 5 style

For a few years now I've been an avid reader and fan of Christmas decorating blogs. Lots of them have "linked in" Holiday parties where the readers are given the wonderful opportunity to view many gorgeous interiors all gussied up for the holidays. I love this! This year I thought I'd give it a try and share Lot 5 dressed up for Christmas with you all.


Lot 5's front porch. I didn't spend a cent, I "shopped" my gardens. Branches that hit me in the head this summer while I mowed the lawn were clipped and put in the planters. I spray painted the old rusty metal planters with a fun Lot 5 green.

They look much nicer now. Hedge apples, brain balls, monkey balls, ousage oranges, whatever you might call them are abundant at Lot 5.

I just love the chartruese color and they give off a sweet pine scent that greets our visitors. Some old skates get a pine twist of clippings from the leylands.

Come on inside and warm up a bit :)

Company's coming and the table is set. Once again I looked to my gardens for inspirations and unrolled some burlap for a table runner. The texture of burlap is so yummy.

Blue, green and brown dollar store snowflakes add sparkle and a simple wooden baguette tray holds ornaments and tea lights. These lights are my must have for the season. Battery operated and flickering, just like candles with out the danger of fire, no wax worries and no smoke. Love them!

I really tried to simplify this year and kept the decor to natural cuttings and ornaments. We are nature lovers here at Lot 5 studio and try to reflect that love indoors as well. Woodland creatures, birds, pinecones, and garden cuttings make up most of my design aesthetic.

Anyone can create this simple floral display that will last the entire season. Cuttings from Lot 5's shrubs trees and plastic, yes PLASTIC ornaments.

Why plastic? See the blury ornaments, they were moving, why? Say Hello to Calvin :)
He likes to be "involved" in the decor, hence the plastic. I've lost one too many glass ornaments since my Calvin cat has joined our family :) His sister Molly is much better behaved, no coal in her stocking this year ;)

My husband's camera collection watched over by a nutcracker and a Christmas cactus that of course bloomed at Thanksgiving :)

Even the bookshelves get a special Holiday message.

Some of my antique "Christmas ornaments scatter around the house in all the little spaces. I just love this little Santa!

Let's not forget the mantel. Earthy and somewhat monochromatic, with evergreen clippings and green frosted snowflakes. Stockings don't go up until Christmas Eve at Lot 5. It's a tradition from waaaayyyy back when.

I dug out my baby cup for a little silver shine and filled it with wooden matches. It actually has dents from where I bit it as a child, funny!

I have a thing for blue pottery and absolutely fell in love with this reproduction German chocolate mold santa in stoneware, glazed with my favorite blue. Pretty mercury ornaments set him off well.

Into the kitchen where I like to let food be the decor. The cloves in the oranges smell sooo nice.

Red and green apples fill the pie stand while my sleeping elf, that I've had since I was a child, finds a spot for a nap in a Liberty blue tea cup. She's just so cute!

I do believe, I do believe :)

The sun is starting to set, lights are coming on. I must go find the window candles to light up the house. Thank you for stopping by.

A very Merry Christmas to all from us at Lot 5. Happy Holidays, enjoy your loved ones, give with a warm generous heart and be open to love. Our wish for all this 2011 Holiday season.

You can see more Holiday house tours at Hooked on Houses here;
and Melissa over at Inspired room is hosting an open house party too.
also Nester is hosting some fab Holiday Homes

Monday, August 29, 2011

The reality of it

The windows are open! Fresh clean air, non of the "canned stuff" that gives me a headache. It feels good, smells good. Fall is in the air and it makes me want to nest. I thought the vase in my living room could use some fresh flowers to mark this beautiful day...alas the hot dry summer took a toll on my gardens and there really wasn't much out there to make an arrangement with. I settled for some ornamental grass.

now scan back and see the reality,
Calvin pouting because he just got scolded for chewing the grass and Molly waiting for Mumma to leave so she can jump up and have a chew. "sigh" I need to realize they are in charge and I am just here to do their bidding ; )

Friday, August 26, 2011

Procrastinating my Art

While my procrastination for creating new artwork is in full swing I've been keeping the creativity flowing by re-arranging my home. Fall is in the air and the nesting instinct is taking over.
I like wine, I keep the corks. I have a big bowl full of corks. So many creative uses for corks, but that would mean my art procrastination would have to come to an end & since it's going so well why end it ; ) Until I create again I decided to PUT A CORK IN IT. Literally : ) The dining room gets an accessory makeover.

The corks have a new home for now.

Monday, May 23, 2011

It's a Big Ta Do

The TO DO list that is. It's that time of year again when Lot 5 studio is gearing up for the Western Loudoun Artist Studio Tour, WLAST. This is our studio's second year participating and the first year both Peter & I are featured. It's a weekend of visitors roaming the country roads and stopping in to see the different artists in the various spaces where they create.
You can imagine all the prep that goes into such an event. We're tackling one item at a time and will get there eventually ; ) I'm almost ready with the outside entrance. My gardens are a huge part of my creativity and it's nice if they'll put on a good show for our customers. I'm hoping my clematis stay in bloom long enough, they're gorgeous this year if I may say so myself. I found a new "old" open sign for Lot 5's door, LOVE IT!
The tour is the weekend of June 11th and 12th. Stop on by if your able, it's really a BIG TA DO.

Monday, February 28, 2011

I painted more Eggs

More eggs, that led to apples,

that led to more apples,

which led to lemons

hey, I've still got apples

then I bought some flowers...and added lemons,

I went to the grocer today. Bought a bag of oranges, give you one guess what I'll be painting next ; )

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Egg on my Face

I spent yesterday afternoon at my easel. I set up a still life of a tea cup and silver spoon. Sounds like a simple painting doesn't it...well 4 hours later and frustrated beyond belief at my seemingly inability to paint a simple form I decided it was back to basic for me.
Oil paints are relatively new to me. My history with paints has been with watercolor and acrylics. Oils intimidated me. As a design student, oils seemed serious. They were for "real" artists and at the time I imagined myself in the genre of illustrator. Hence my oil painting experience is somewhat lacking on my resume.
To counteract that and to teach myself confidence with the medium I am dedicating the month of February 2011 to re-visiting the simple form. Concentrating on light, reflected light, shadows, brush strokes, mixing colors and I will do that with an egg. I will paint eggs for one month. White eggs, brown eggs, gosh I wonder if some of my friends that have chickens would let me have some blue or green eggs?
Let the scramble begin, what a good egg, I have egg on my face...should I go on ; )

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sad Eyes

Does he scare you? Out of the kiln and ready to go to work, my ceramic scarecrow actually makes me a bit sad. Is it the blank spot where his eyes should be, is it possible that his eyes look sad when he doesn't have any? Did the crows pluck them out, or is he tired from his role of garden protector against the brazen dark force of the crow?

You can read here about the creative adventure of the scarecrow.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Challenge is on

It's a new year and a new focus here at Lot 5. Both Peter and I are, and will be continuing, to set personal artistic challenges. Peter started off the year with a goal of 100 mugs in January. He's doing pretty well, 50 down and 50 to go. For now I'm calling him the Mug Man. He's gotta nice mug that mug man of mine, say that three times fast ; )

I admire his fortitude and his ability of consistency, something I struggle with. Some mugs lined up fresh from the wheel.

What's my challenge, you might ask? Not as lofty as Peter's. I only gave up a week on this month's creative adventure. I attempted to be creative with something, some how, a day for seven days straight. I sort of completed mine, does making soup count ; )
I had fun with a variety of mediums, resulting in both success and failure. The week started with my scarecrow ceramic sculpture, *see yesterday's blog, and ended with a oil painting that will most likely get wiped off the canvas, lol.

Some of my challenges offerings;

Enjoy whilst I ponder the next challenge for Lot 5 studio : )