Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Back form christmas holidays, back into our home and daily life routine. Benjamin Rocket was a hit for his first christmas. Even grandma has a crush on him because he's so damn cute. We were to no one surprise able to give pots for presents this year. Sometimes the value of my work seems to diminish when i look at it all the time. But to the person recieving, it's like a treasure. I was thankful for being able to be with my family and friends another year and for the gift to create things with my hands. looking forward to the new year and what new opportunities arise. Just as a quick reminder for those reading, Our spring show season is not as packed full but we're hoping for a good one. Here it is: "creating soft pots" John C. Campbell folk school,March 28-Apr 3, (4 Bridges Art fair) April 17-18 2010 Chattanooga,Tn, (ONB Magic City Art Connection) Apr 23-25 Birmingham, AL, (TACA Spring fair) May 7,8,9 2010 Nashville, TN, (Columbus Arts Festival) June 4-6 Columbus,OH, in between shows I hope to be making more work, playing with my son and wife and bbquing somethin with my friends.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Focused Ideas, hopeful opportunities

Pots are evolving, even though I don't get as much time in the studio like I was used to. Working at nite seems to be going well even though I like being up in the morning. My mind and motivation seem to work better in the day but it's more peaceful at nite. Having our son has taken alot of time away from making work for now but my ideas and progression have been more spontaneous and deliberate. I think that time working is more precious to me now than when I was in there everyday all day. I've been developing a new body of work that is really cool to me. Being simple with my work with simple gestures has been a way of working for awhile now. Only now do I feel like I'm making new discoveries in the clay. I'm definetely going for a more caveman look with a strong, permanent presence. I've thought that if Fred Flinstone was japanese and he threw pots they'd be something like this. Not going to do as many shows this year but I'm finally sending out my packets to potentially teach at craftcenters/colleges. That has been a process and really affirmed my hunger for wanting to get out there and share the ideas that i'm working on. I hope for the best. Don't think I'm going to do the Rosen show this year...Just can't afford it right now. Kinda of a bummer but other doors will open. Hoping for a strong start to the year , full of juicy pots and good health for my family and me.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Pots are progressing and the ideas are startin to come out. The pressure of winterizing my studio is gone and old pots are sold. Had a good nite in the studio. Still debating whether or not to do the rosen show again in feb or put the money to try and do a couple high end, make u, set u up shows. We really depended on those accounts we got from last years rosen. The pots are always evolving and changing so fast that if I dont do it right I will weed my way out of the wholesale market. Even though I develope bodies of work, They still evolve over the course of a month to six months. I'm sure we'll figure it out and go down the best road for us, just always something to think about as an artist. Anyway..goodnite

Monday, November 23, 2009

I hung out with my son and mama today. So many tasks that are essential just to keep the day running that you find yourself really missin those times with the family. My wife and I are learning everyday the simple ways that keep us grounded. Rocket has been alot of fun. He's so addictive that he easily trumps my time to create for myself. Ana has been a trooper at work. She probably has the hardest job which is having to be away from her son for a majority of the day. It's all about adaptation. I use to work in the studio from 7-5 or 6. Now it's 6-1 in the morn. We have one more show in sewannnee tn before the end of the show season. I'm almost done making my packet to send off for workshop instructor positions. That has been a process. I love doing shows and selling my pots. I would love to break into the workshop avenue and begin teaching others the tricks and ideas that I am pursuing. My studio will be completely insulated tonite after my wife gets home and I will be back into create mode by tuesday. Talk more later


Monday, November 16, 2009

We had a good show run so far. Just got back from the foothills craft guild show and it was really surprising. Ana and I stopped doing the show because my work quickly was changing and probably edging my way out from a certain clientel. We hadn't been back in a few years and the respionse was great. I think I might of sold a mug or two and a tumbler but the rest were all show pieces. Alot of my new more riskier work left the shelves and now are with good families. It's all timing. I didn't have the caliber of work that these people were looking for 3 years ago. I would get caught giggiling int the booth because of were I was and the events that led me up to right now. Alot of struggles and growth that was much needed. We got to show off Rocket to our friends who had'nt seen us in awhile. The foothills guild really helped us get back on our feet when we had our studio fire. It was good to give back in a small way and give support. Heres the booth getup.

Monday, November 9, 2009

We got back from pottersfest last nite. had a great time and sold a bunch of pots. had ana start the kiln as I was heading back. It was really good to be with all clay artists, specially just to see what everyone was doing. Shimpo came and sponsored the clay olympics. Got to hang out with some old friends and sample some nc goodies as well as some homemade bourbon by friend Brant Barnes. It was good to breathe cool north carolina mtn air and sell my pots. It was really good to come home and see my family, rocket had a fun halloween. heres some of the new work that was at the show. Thanks to everyone whos been buying my pots and supportin us through everything.

Monday, November 2, 2009

good mornin, had a good productive weekend. finished glazing and startin to load the kiln for potters fest. lookin forward to the crisp smoky mtn air. We had a few trick or treaters also. next year I will be ready to really scare the h'/;.ll out of some kids...just kiddin? Our leaves are really nice right now and we got some good family candid shots just hangin out. I will post them when ana shows me how to download pics. anyway rocket and i are enjoying the monday mornin listening to a little a waylon and sittin in the sun comin through the windows. glad to have the life I have.

Friday, October 30, 2009

happy halloween

We carved pumpkins last nite. This is our first carvin at our new house in our new neighborhood. mixed glazes also. Real close to seeing new work come out. Hoping for a strong finish to the year with shows. I'm lookin forward to pottersfest. Get to see some good friends and fire a wood kiln. Me and Rocket are hangin out this smornin and watchin a movie. I get to work in the studio all weekend so hopefully alot will get done. I've really been gettin into this new jar form and especially the handles. thats where its at. check out my cool guy shades man.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

firing the kiln the smorning, even though its a electric kiln, its so damn big it fires like a gas kiln, always having to adjust the zone controls to get even heat. Got some new work coming out for the wncpottersfest, I'm starting to see my transition from potter to sculptor happen which is pretty cool. I hope my customers still follow me. anyway my son rocket is waking up, write more later

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


Not much happenin on this mon. Little Rocket is asleep and I'm playing catchup with chores before I get into the studio. Saw my dad and brother this weekend. My brother is going back to hawaii to live and hopefully start a little bit of his life over. I wish him luck and hope he finds what he's lookin for. My dad is doing good livin by norris lake in TN. Ana and i were glad that him and rocket got to hang out. It's rainy out and I'm finishing up some mom I am.

making new work

Hey everyone, Today I finally get into the studio to make new work. I've caught myself up with house stuff from being on the road with shows. I made a nice fish chowder last nite and shared with some friends. My son Rocket is happy and laying down right now. He falls asleep if we take a bath and a bottle. my most productive hours in the day. I've been updating my face book page(Shadow May Pottery), also twittering as much as I can (Shadow_May). I'm still trying to update my website I'm slowly getting better on the computer because I am fulltime daddy till mama gets home. usually dinner is ready and I can go work in the studio. It's taking some getting use to working at nite, especially after a full day of daddy mode. I feel more productive when I see daylight out but these are the adjustments that we take for our children. I wouldnt turn back even if I could. I came to the conclusion yesterday that I'm not afraid of the world anymore. daily struggles like bills and uncerintintys of just daily living will never go away. This really is a huge breakthrough because most of our struggles seem to take over and leave no room for growth or laughin or loving. Bills and mortgage and struggles will always be there. Thats what brings me the growth I need to be a productive artist, loving father and husband as well as a reliable neighbor and good friend. I guess not being afraid of the world just means that there's always gonna be a new day. A new chance to work and enjoy the gifts we get in life. I'm gonna keep on creating and soakin it up, please do the same.

a lot has happened

Been awhile since i've blogged but here it goes. I just got back from doing the pink palace craft show in memphis. Really ggod show again but lost sunday to rain. We have recently bought a house in redbank Tn, a suburb of Chattanooga. I have my studio at home again. For those I lost touch with we had a studio fire about 2 years ago losing everything that sustained me as an artist.
studio fire

We had so much help from friends and family and those who have followed me and purchased my pots. We could not have started over without the help of everyone. I have been hard at it doin shows throughout the u.s. Recently recieved a best in clay award at atlanta arts fest which really gave me an extra boost to push out new work.
102 1894

My wife and I had our first child, A baby boy. We named him Benjamin Rocket May.
102 2421

He is 2 1/2 months old and keeping us up at those crucial sleeping hours but we love him to death and have adjusted for the most part. I'm getting readuy to do the potters fest in dillsboro,NC, oct 31 and then the foothills craft show in Knoxville TN(nov13-15). Making lots of new work. You can find me on Facebook(shadow may or shadowmay pottery, as well as twitter, I was a recipient in the strictly functional pottery national in lancaster PA which was pretty cool.

and had a article published in the signal mtn mirror in chattanooga tn

First Festival down, lots more to go.....

Well, got our first show out of the way--Toney and I. Had a couple relly weird experiences. The weather was gorgeous, but very dusty. I had Toney make a deposit on Saturday afternoon. Things went haywire and envelopes went in the wrong slots, but everything turned out fine on Tuesday Mornin'---a long time to wait to fix your mistake. To top it off, we broke ~ $700 worth of bowls and had a couple strong conversations with the customers. Despite all the trouble, Toney and I had the best festival to date over the past two years I've been in business. Had a great Sunday to finish off the four day show and then we were headed off to Mississippi to see mama Sue and Roland--Toney's soon-to-be boy.
Listen, we're on this festival, working men, working potters, travelling, tryring to do the circuit. I do think that you have to have quite a but of nerve andcourage mixed with crazy to be able to take what comes from your hands and heart and sell it.
So, now we're in Gulf Shores, AL and we've set up for the National Shrimp Festival ( a four day show). We've let our hair down a little bit and I asked my beautiful, lovely red-headed Ana to marry me. I'm floatin' around on cloud nine here on the beach. Once we get this festival out of the way, we have eight more. The road has been really good to us, and I really think that this would be a great documentary on life as a crafter/ artist. We've been drinking Toney's famous Pina colodas for the past couple a days. Had some good seafood, made some good love and enjoyed some good company. So here's my thought of the day:
If you see a man walking down the interstate, do you automatically think he's homeless?

Less Than a Week 'til the Road Trip

Well, with less than a week 'til my best friend and I venture out to sell our wares on the road, I'm still managing to gather all the small things that I need---oil change for the truck, cut business cards, sand pots, load and unload three more kilns, rewire the trailer. These are the things that I'm finding I'd eliminate If I were a wholesale potter vs. the trade off traveling on the road and meeting new people. Over the past year this has been my dilemma of how to make a living as a potter. The excitement of going from state to state has made it pretty easy at times to handle the monotonous chores. Although I work out of my home with my business, I don't know if I'd want to be home all of the time, never getting out. So, I'm beginning to do both--wholesale and retail on the road. Don't get me wrong, the life of a potter exceeds the 40 hour work week that most of us live, but being able to have my cup of coffee or a nice shot of Bourbon at any time I want is definitely better than having someone else telling me what to do. My first show is in Memphis, Tennessee--Pink Palace Fine Arts and Crafts Show. Nine shows later I end my fall stretch with a three day holiday market in Chattanooga, Tennessee. For some reason, I really enjoy that three-in-the-morning pit stop at the gas station for bad coffee and expensive gas daydreaming about the many pots I might sell.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

electricty in the studio

My good friend John Hart came to town today and helped me wire my studio with more power and outlets and lights. We had a good workday and ended it with steak and beer and a good visit. I'm so full and tired though, so goodnite.