Crazy for Octopi, That’s Me

Surfacing again now that the Big Annual Art Show is over and so is the academic quarter. I have about 2 weeks of relative free time until the next quarter begins. Somehow I decided to teach two courses instead of my usual one. I may well be sorry about that once things get underway, but I’ve been working on an attitude adjustment that includes not letting the school stuff get under my skin. It worked pretty well for last quarter but then I had a great group of students who remained engaged and involved even though the course was online-only.
I only teach online these days- told the admins at the college I would keep on with teaching as long as I could do that, and apparently they aren’t ready to let me go yet. Past COVID I know they are trying to bring students back on campus as much as possible, but many are still enjoying the freedom that asynchronous online courses offer- they can keep their jobs and take care of their families and “go to school” on their own schedules. Heck, some of my students even take my classes from elsewhere in the country or other parts of the world. It’s pretty wonderful.

I haven’t been painting hardly at all. I finished one painting earlier this year, another flower, you may have seen it here. The next painting I started after that one ended up getting scraped down. Every painting I do goes through the “I HATE it” phase, but usually I get past that and finish. This one did not. It’s fine. All just part of the process.

Instead of painting, over the last few months, I’ve spent every spare studio minute making clay things and learning how different clays and glazes respond to my amateur manipulations. So far so good. Lots of failure, of course, and the future archeology site in the woods behind our house has many bits of unsuccessful clay experiments resting their final sleep in a small pit. (FYI, all the clays and glazes I use are completely lead-free and contain no elements that could be harmful to the soil or the many animals and plants that populate our shy acre.)

I’m on an octopus kick. This started last year but it’s become a “thing” now, and people seem to like them. They sell better than my paintings! And I really like making them. Below are more of the latest pieces to come out of my kiln. They will all be heading to the gallery for April.