Opening this Friday, May 9

Christa Smith of Feltsmith and Sharon Ho of Optimism and Co. invite you to our

Studio Opening

1st collaboration

at Eastsound Square #D3 (behind Mia’s Cafe and Olga’s boutique)

on Friday, May 9, from 4.30pm to 7pm

It is finally warm enough to keep our door open, come and see what we have been up to.

Walk with me

Walk with me Handmade ceramic pendant and two round beads.  Glazed and high-fired to cone 5/6, pooka shells, stone beads, found objects, natural strings.
Walk with me
Handmade ceramic pendant and two round beads. Glazed and high-fired to cone 5/6, pooka shells, stone beads, found objects, natural strings.
Seed bead Hand carved ceramic bead with relief glazing.
Seed bead
Hand carved ceramic bead with relief glazing.

Hello! From two summers ago, a memory of a tangled seaweed necklace studded with rocks inspired this recent work. I named this ‘Walk with me’ because I think of the person wearing it as a collector who picks up bits and pieces on long meanders on the beach or in the woods and strings them in her memory.

This is one of the artworks featured at the annual Edge Arts Collective show at the Orcas Centre Gallery on Orcas Island. The show is one of the most anticipated of the year among island artists and collectors, not least because of its swinging opening night party. It opens this Friday October 4th, party starts at 5.30pm. All invited.

I’ve had a long busy summer, and Fall (my favourite time of year! featuring my favourite colours!) signals my time to hunker down in the studio and translate my summer’s travels and inspirations in new work. Off I go. Won’t you walk with me?

Citrus Denim

"Citrus Demin" Hand stamped ceramic pendant, oxide rub, celadon and clear glazes; found beads and custom made black cord with stainless steel clasp
“Citrus Demin” Hand stamped ceramic pendant, oxide rub, celadon and clear glazes; found beads and custom made black cord with stainless steel clasp

Citrus Denim

This one’s available too at the Annual Salmonberry Silent Auction and Dinner – the school’s main fundraiser event – that takes place this Saturday evening, May 4th on Orcas Island. The details are in the description in the photo caption above. This beautiful piece measures 2.25″ x 3″ and comes with a 16″ black cord, all beautifully packaged in a giftbox. Mother’s Day gift? If this one speaks to you, contact me at optimismandco@gmail.com with your bid (any amount) BEFORE 3pm Pacific Standard Time, Saturday, May 4th and I’ll put your name on the bid list. I’ll contact you with delivery details if you win!

Have a cow

'Mover and Shaker' Pin, pendant and bag tag
‘Moover and Shaker’ Pin, pendant and bag tag

"You Moove Me" Pin, pendant and bag tag
“You Moove Me” Pin, pendant and bag tag
"A Moodern Heart" pin, pendant and bag tag
“A Moodern Heart” pin, pendant and bag tag

Three of my latest cow pins/pendants/bagtags are available for bids this Saturday at the Salmonberry School Silent Auction and Dinner on Orcas Island – the school’s annual fundraiser. Each pin measures 2.5″ x 2″ and is handstamped and carved from brown clay that is then glazed in iron oxide and satin white. If there’s one you like, contact me at optimismandco@gmail.com with your bid (any amount) BEFORE 3pm Pacific Standard Time, Saturday, May 4th and I’ll put your name on the bid list. I’ll contact you with delivery details if you win!

Putting it out there

Display box of 5 ceramic pendants, embellished with seashells, found beads, jadeite stones and vintage buttons.  For individual purchase.  Prices from USD68 to USD128.
Five handcarved ceramic pendants, embellished with seashells, found beads, jadeite stones and vintage buttons. Available as a set or individually.

My first showing of work on Orcas Island!  I exhibited two sets of ceramic jewelry in keeping with the show’s theme of Wearable Art.  I was surprised to find myself the only artist to show jewelry (not a bad thing on hindsight), which serendipitously complemented the sumptuously handmade, hand beaded cloaks, costumes, fabric, masks and puppets on display. The costume works of Judy Tepley was astounding in their detail and intricacy, and I felt humbled thinking of the effort I spent in the mere bits of beading and threading I incorporated in my set of ceramic pendants above.

The show opened on Dec 1 with a warm reception that was perfectly family-friendly, with artists on hand to help with mask making and sock puppet creations, not to mention a delightful spread of pre-Christmas bites.  My boys thus occupied, gave me time to chat with other artists and guests I have never met.  It was a nice low-key debut personally.

I love the custom-framed box above and want to give special mention to its designer and maker –  the very creative Andy Troxel – who used seasoned wood reclaimed from the humble pallet, and pulled it all together  at a week’s notice.  Thank you, Andy!

Hung at the entrance foyer of Orcas Center for the Wearable Art Show.
Hung at the entrance foyer of Orcas Center for the Wearable Art Show.
IMG_8087
My second display at the Show – a collection of elegantly simple ceramic pendants in earth colored glazes, inspired by the twigs and the curled shavings of tree bark picked up while beachcombing on Orcas Island.