Sunday, May 31, 2009

2nd Saturday Artist Market is expanding!

Check out the blog (click on image above) and get all the skinny ... I've been updating computer stuff far too long. Got the Red Sox on the radio, the sun is warming up yesterday's wheel work and it's time to make some more!

Friday, May 29, 2009

feelin' the love, claiming the power...

Yesterday I closed the studio so I could participate and vend at the Women's Business Conference, sponsored by Mountain Biz Works. I attended last year, just days after I found out I had been approved for my start up and was about to sign the lease on my studio. I stayed up till 3am printing info with my new address, I was so excited! This year I admit I'm excited again, not the least of which is because I'm still here!

The theme and message that I kept picking up through all the keynote speakers, breakout session and even in random chatter with other attendees was INTENTION. Living intentionally, re-training your mind set to truly from your core let your intentions lead the way - focus on what you want, not the need. My friend and GO mentor Jane led the breakout I attended, and she gave a quote (my apologies for not remembering the original quoter) that I may put on the wall: "Fear is just excitement without the breathe." Keep breathing.

Right up my alley, yet as I was just telling a friend and client, it seems to be something I have to keep reminding myself. In one exercise where we were asked to list a 'hope', my initial response was 'enough', which I initially thought was 'enough'. But I was reminded by said friend and client that perhaps I should be focusing on 'abundance', as 'enough' might just be what keeps me chin deep in water, wondering if perhaps there's a leak in the roof, and abundance may actually allow me to grow. hmmmmmm.

We were a group of about 200 extremely smart, talented, motivated and inspirational women. It's hard to maintain negative energy or a feeling of isolation in that kind of company, and I can still feel the buzz from all that power sharing!

I also vended in the Member's Market, and made some wonderful contacts that I'm looking forward to expanding in the coming weeks. And my table had extra good juju as it was the first 'official' day for my new assistant, Lily.

Lily is a student at UNCA with just enough clay experience in high school to know she wants to know more, which is the kind of person I like having around the studio! She also graciously agreed to spend the day with me at the conference, allowing me to step away from my table for the break out session and to chase down people I wanted to talk with. It was great to see the conference through her eyes, and hear her own responses to the questions posed among attendees. I'm so glad she was able to be there to get her own inspiration - I'm looking forward to watching her become a young entrepreneur, and I'm very happy to have her join the studio!

Having glazed and fired right before the conference, then glazed and now waiting to fire again, the studio looks a bit like it was ransacked. So today is cleaning, sorting and packing pots for delivery and shipping, and taking inventory on materials so I can get back to the 'do' list. Most of the last two and next kiln are for commissions, but I hope to have new work of my own to show soon, so stay tuned!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Monday musings...

So originally I closed the studio for the weekend thinking I might actually take some time off, and yet I knew then as I know now that it's just not quite time for that! Prepping work for two kilns this week, vending at the Women's Business Conference between the two kilns, welcoming a new studio assistant, prepping pots for delivery and all that business of doing business fun as well. But my birthday prezzie to me was to stay 'closed' and at least have a more relaxed approach to what's ahead in the week. Glaze load one is done and I'll soon be loading the kiln, possibly with time to spare to join another Gemini's birthday celebration, and the bisque that'll cool over night will give me pots to glaze during tomorrow's firing, plus the pieces I threw yesterday should be ready to trim soon, which will keep the cycle moving along.

And it's also Memorial Day - one of the things I loved to do when I lived in DC was to spend time down on the Mall over this weekend. Tons of tourists, yes, but go in the wee hours and see the families and veterans, paying quiet respect, and feeling a common human bond with just about everybody you passed. And Rolling Thunder - well named because you really can feel the rumble as the thousands of bikes pass. There is a special energy of reflection that surrounds the memorials and monuments in DC over this weekend, and today we've all been asked to take a moment to send a thoughtful prayer and thank you to our troops, past and present. I'd hope we all carry a little grateful prayer daily for all the people who choose a life of service on behalf of others - military and civilian, but a directed force in the universe is a nice thing, and I'll add my buzz to that at 3pm.

And I'll take another moment as I start my own 'new year' to say a prayer of gratitude ... for my mom & dad of course who made it all possible, for all the incredible people in my life and for the opportunity to do what I love, even when it means 'working' on weekends, holidays and birthdays.

Thanks be, praise all and spread the love!

happy place

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Announcing Asheville Street Markets!

Asheville Street Markets is the collaborative creation of Howard Street Handmade, Big Crafty, 2nd Saturday Artist Market, People's Market, and Lexington Bazaar! Click on the link above and bookmark this blog as your resource for ongoing opportunities for live markets for art, crafts, clothing, housewares, indie art, gifts, you name it!

2nd Saturday Artist Market and Crazy Green Studios are proud to be a part of Asheville Street Markets, and to help promote live markets for artists of all sorts! If you're looking for that perfect gift, or looking for what to so with visiting friends or relatives - check out the blog for links to events practically every weekend!

And be sure to check out Asheville Street Market members at the upcoming Howard Street Handmade Market - this Saturday at the corner of Howard Street and Haywood, next door to Short Street Cakes!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

where does she get it?

A friend recently told me she thought I had great courage to be 'following my dream' with such confidence and conviction. I've often said that I now dangle much further out on a limb, yet it doesn't feel half as scary as other times in my life when I've been in a much more 'safe' position.

I always chuckle at the 'courage' part, then again, I know other people I say the same thing about, so I guess it's all a matter of perspective.

But speaking of much do you need to have to be... say 21 or 22 to go after a job in an environment where you don't even speak the language. Where you actually, through an interpreter, talk your boss into hiring you to give you the chance to learn the language, and he does it? And then not much later, you're venturing far from home and family, in your new married life to a completely foreign land, still struggling with the language, but managing to run a household for the first time while you learn language and culture. And then later still, when you find yourself a single mom, working one job where you're one of the most successful sales associates all while being the only female sales associate (this is back in the 70's when it was considered notable)...and you own and run your own business. There are more stories like this, and I've only gotten the perspective as an adult to look back over my mother's life with the awe and admiration of one who has, by comparison, relatively small struggles.

Even she has voiced admiration for me following my own path, and if I'm the fortunate girl I think myself to be, then I got some of this confidence and conviction from my dear mom. And she continues to inspire - today on Mother's Day she and my step-dad will be crewing on a Coast Guard Auxilliary watch boat. Happy Mother's Day, Mom! I wish you sunny skies and smooth sailing today - I love you!

ps - and while I'm at it, my sister has had her own brave moments to be sure, and I hope she's having a lovely Mother's Day too! xoxo

Friday, May 8, 2009

2nd Saturday tomorrow!

Tomorrow is 2nd Saturday, so it must be time for an Artist Market! Crazy Green Studios is pleased to sponsor this monthly Artist Market, and invites you to come on over to East-West Asheville and see what's going on!

We'll be easy to spot under tent tops on Domino Lane, and you'll see signs on Haywood Road at Harvest Records, as well as at Westwood/Waynesville at Christopher's Garden. Parking is available on Haywood and on adjoining side streets. In addition to the vendors under the tents on Domino Lane, Christopher Mello will open Flash Studios, next to his beautiful gardens, to take part in the Market.

And the fun doesn't stop there! Be sure to check out what's going on at the great businesses all around us in East West Asheville: Short Street Cakes, Izzy's Coffee Den, Harvest Records, Blue Barnhouse, Custom Boutique, BookWorks, the Admiral - click the image above and check out the blog for a full listing, as well as profiles on participating artists and information about the Community Booth.

Monday, May 4, 2009

another one of those grateful moments...

Heather Kouri has been assisting me in my studio for the past six months, and today is her last day at the pug mill as she prepares to go WOOFing in Europe. To say that I'm grateful for Heather's help these past months seems insignificant compared to how much I truly valued her great attitude, good judgment and dedication to keeping me on an even keel. Heather was my first studio assistant, and she kindly rolled along with my own growing pains in learning how to best utilize her talents and willingness to help with anything needed in the studio. I'll miss her, not only because she's my pug mill queen, but because I always enjoyed time in the studio with her.

An accomplished potter herself and graduate from the Haywood Community College, I hope she'll find ways to get her hands into clay other than on the farm while she's off on this next adventure, and I wish her lots and lots of adventures!

Studio members who didn't know she was leaving may still have a chance to say good bye, as she'll be coming in to glaze some last pots next week before she literally takes off.

Thank you Heather - the studio wouldn't be what it is without you, and you will be greatly missed!