Get to Know
I must say I've loved my crazy life so far. Shanghaied by my dad to be his only deck hand as a nine year old kid, I pulled fish, cooked and got my marine radio operators license while I worked the next four summers on his salmon troller. First in Alaska and later off the Washington coast, our trips generally lasted 8 to 10 days and were beyond the sight of land most of the time.
As a young married adult I had lived in a rebuilt old cedar raft type houseboat located on Lake Union at Seattle WA. Next a huge, strange old unfinished brick house overlooking the ship canal became home, with a big wild terraced yard to love. (I also rented a table on Flower Row, selling my first clay stuff at the funky Pike Place Market in the seventies, before it was renovated.)
It was an exciting urban phase during the days of initiating the first natural food co-ops as we also pooled work skills to establish free women's clinics. The *back to the land, living off the grid* thing became a hot topic in those days, which propelled us into a dramatic move onto 20 acres of raw land in Southwest Oregon, where we could try our hand at sustainability.
Later during a second marriage, I moved to a cabin that was a 2 mile hike in where I now had the help of six kids (3 mine and 3 new ones) plus a burro and some horses to tote groceries, laundry and building supplies. Meanwhile, for years my electric kiln was in storage in a neighbor's chicken coop, until another bigger life/relationship change (we need not go there) inspired me to move and buy my own first house.
In a cute little cottage in Bandon Oregon, my focus once more included artwork and sustainability activism. I began making symbolic ceramic masks and traveled with my kids in a house truck I built, doing the art fair circuits from Puget Sound to Southwest Oregon. When my work became successful, selling in the west coast galleries, I also did a few artist in resident classes in the public schools and opened a shop in a dilapidated old town building on the Bandon waterfront.
I taught small Cosmic Doo Dah Sessions privately and began arranging invitational art shows to sell my work at friends' houses. Those scenarios were organized somewhat like a Tupperware party, but were way more interesting... magical woo woo, get down, sort of new age, wild women type gatherings. Very fun and empowering!
Being a certifiably obsessed DIY person, I've upgraded 3 houses best I could and built 3 rustic cedar house trucks over the years. My scariest project was relocating a toilet and replacing the waste lines here in my house at Orient WA. For a long time there were 2 toilets in my bathroom...one of them duct taped shut while I got up nerve enough to completely switch to the new system.
So I have a small studio where I live now, read a lot, collect cool junk, garden, float the Kettle River every summer and try to cook enough tasty healthy food so the bad stuff I eat doesn't kill me off.
Since my artwork has always been self taught and learn as I go, life is usually one big endless experiment. That's probably what keeps me hooked on ceramics....the creativity, curiosity and opening that kiln each time. Sometimes unintended, chemical interactions are alarming, but most often turn out to be just plain fun, especially if glaze re-dos produce some new keepers. Stay tuned for whatever comes out of the kiln next.
And thanks so much for checking out my ArtFire shop.