Sunday, October 24, 2010

A bit of Penland

Greetings! I was just reading the OCAC blog and realized it's about time I share my happenings with anyone still reading my own blog... is anyone out there? A lot has happened since I last wrote - I started a job in picture framing, moved out of the Guild and into a studio with another potter who I'm assisting, and went to Penland School of Crafts for Elisa Helland-Hansen's workshop. If you're an artist and you haven't heard of Penland, where on earth have you been? It's a magical place. Here's just a snippet of photos from my 2-week adventure:

All I knew about Elisa when I started the workshop was what I read in Penland's catalogue, and I was delighted to have fallen in to her class. Elisa is an excellent instructor and skilled potter. When it was her turn to show slides, she first stood in front of the audience and sang a Norwegian folk song, then showed slides of her pots and photos of Norway, encouraging us to visit. I do hope to visit someday and trek the moutains of Norway with her.

North Carolina is a potter's haven - there were so many studios to visit! Michael Kline's studio was one of the first stops. We missed him that day, but this ferocious beast was there to greet us instead. Thankfully these lovely ladies managed to tame it.

Elisa & I modeling each other's pitchers in front of the salt kiln. We did 4 different salt & soda firings in 2 weeks!

Pitcher from a soda firing, sold at the workstudy benefit auction to classmate Bobby.

The night I returned from Penland I couldn't resist a decadent treat in one of my cupcake cups. I made a dozen of these to bake cupcakes in - not sure how they would actually fare in the oven & I haven't tested it yet, but they are sweet little dessert cups in any case.

If you'd like to keep up on my pottery happenings more regularly, check out my Facebook ceramics page.

Monday, May 3, 2010


I'm looking into moving and I'm not sure where to start. A road trip would be fabulous, but not in my budget right now, so perhaps some of my lovely readers could give me some advice.

Portland and San Francisco are at the top of my list, although I've never been to Portland and only briefly visited San Fran. North Carolina is another one. So what's the ceramics scene like in those areas? I'd like to attend grad school in fall 2011, but where to start looking? An awesome social dance scene, especially with swing dancing, is required as well...

Monday, April 26, 2010

Blooms of May

The new Arvada Ceramic Arts Guild website is live! Thank you Justin McCammon for helping us out.

If you're in the Denver area this weekend, stop by the Guild to see our Spring Show & Sale, "Blooms of May for Mothers Day," featuring cut flowers from Arvada's Fiori di Flavio in one-of-a-kind vases along with other pottery, ceramic art, paintings & jewelry. The Gallery is open April 30 - May 2: Friday noon-9PM, reception at 5; Saturday-Sunday 10AM-5PM. This vase is by the Guild's Kit Martinez.

One of these days you'll see some pots made by me! Teapots, mugs and dinner sets are in the works. Become a fan on Facebook to get more regular updates: Erin Casey Ceramics

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Springtime at the Guild

The Arvada Ceramic Arts Guild is hosting their annual spring show & sale in a couple weeks. Join us for the reception on April 30th from 5 - 9 PM for refreshments, pottery and good company. The gallery will also be open Saturday & Sunday from 10 AM - 5 PM, May 1-2.
The Guild is on Facebook - tune in for regular updates @

Thursday, February 25, 2010

The perfect cup for your tea

In December a young man came to the gallery looking for a mug for his tea-loving girlfriend. She preferred her tea on the cooler side and he thought a tall mug would be suitable for her. As a potter and tea aficionado, I have enjoyed tea in many different vessels and I can say that a tall mug actually keeps the beverage hotter longer than in a short, stout cup. I have tea on the mind more than ever now that I'm organizing a tea show at the Guild, so here's a guide to find the right cup for you.

At the office: A mug with a wide base, possibly thick for more stability. Consider getting one personalized with your name if you're worried someone else will take it.

For those on-the-go: A tall handle-less cup to fit in a cup holder. A lid and silicone sleeve will help. Bonus: if you frequent a certain chain coffee shop, bring your mug and say you want your second cup refill of the day... you might get a discount.

For hot tea that stays hot longer: A tall cup with a narrow opening, and thick walls to help insulate.

For hot tea on the cooler side: A shorter cup with a wider opening. Lightweight cups with thin walls help because they won't hold heat as long.

For relaxing on a cold day: A handle-less tea bowl to embrace in both hands, with thick insulating walls.

For a tea party: A handmade teapot in which you can steep tea for several people and pour into smaller teacups, preferably cups with character that would strike up a conversation.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Electric kiln for sale

I bought this electric kiln last summer and never got around to hooking it up. Now that I've joined the Guild I really don't have a use for my own kiln and when I do, I'd like to buy a larger one. Do you know any Colorado artists who need a kiln? Craigslist posting here. Paragon model A-66 B, $300.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Etsy shop

My Etsy shop is once again full... well, full as it ever was. Someday in the next few months it will be even more full with not only cups, but teapots and other tea accessories. The Arvada Ceramic Arts Guild is having a tea-themed show in March, so I'm getting ready for that. In the meantime, take a look at my shop here. 5% of proceeds from my bicycle cups will be donated to Wish for Wheels, a Colorado charity who donates new bicycles to underprivileged Denver kindergarten kids.

Which design is your favorite?

Shop Etsy.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

New bike cups

My cups enjoyed a little photo shoot in the kitchen today... not the best lighting, but it'll do for now. I hope to have these and more pots up for sale on Etsy by Monday. Here are "Lost," "Curiosities" and "To the Moon!"

Monday, January 11, 2010

Curiosities in 2010

The first bike cups of 2010 in progress:

My "Lost" design here has evolved into "Curiosities," with the flower kissing the bike, or sniffing it's nose like two cats greeting each other, and some other flowers remind me of winged insects. I'm enjoying this design most of all! To the right is a new design inspired by a delicious apricot beer at Dry Dock Brewing in Aurora, Colorado, and in the back are "To the Moon!" and "Dive!" bike cups. Someday I'll have my work for sale again on Etsy... for now it's sold at the Arvada Ceramic Arts Guild gallery, Madison & Main in Greeley, and soon I hope to have some at Leta's Loot, a housewares consignment store in Aurora.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Studio update

I've been a busy little potter this season, making a lot of cups as usual, along with pitchers, jars & teapots. A friend commented on my lack of direction and the fact that I don't stick with one thing for long. It's true, I get bored easily, but I do have plans for a full dinner set, or luncheon set rather. What those pots will look like I haven't figured out yet. At the moment my mind is set on making a cup inspired by my cat Leo. Here he is enjoying a cuppa:

We're also experimenting with glazes at the Arvada Ceramic Arts Guild. Connie Christensen is in her glaze testing phase of the year, now testing dozens of cone 6 glazes, and we have a cone 6 electric glaze workshop at the Guild January 30-31. I haven't experimented much with glazes myself, but I would like to make some ^6 electric microcrystalline glazes. Here are two beautiful examples of a microcrystallines: Susan Filly tumbler, Susan Filley cup. Any advice on making & testing these sorts of glazes is welcome. If you're in the area & you'd like to join us for the workshop, call the guild for more info - 303.423.0448. The Guild is on Facebook too & I post regular updates about our events & news from other Guild members: Arvada Ceramic Arts Guild.
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