You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘Inspiration’ category.

American Trade Bead by Harold Williams Cooney

American Trade Bead by Harold Williams Cooney

I just finished setting this bead by Harold Williams Cooney, American Trade Beads.  His beads are amazing and I love the way this turned out.  I used a tube to set the bead, threaded the tubing and then put rubber washers and screws to keep it in place.  Fabricated with sterling silver. It is a stunning piece.  They also have a Facebook page, and sell on Etsy.

I just restocked at Evergreen Gallery, in downtown Evergreen, of course, and tomorrow Baby Does in Golden will have a new grouping of my work.  There are a few new pearls at Barbara & Co, on Old South Gaylord Street.  And next week I’ll have new work at Willow in Littleton.

And one last note, I will no longer have handmade jewelry in Creator Mundi.  We had quite a tenure, I found records from 2002.  It’s a wonderful inspirational gallery in Cherry Creek North.

what will the new year bring?

what will the new year bring?

Happy New Year!  Can you believe another year has blown by?  WordPress notified me that I have made 152 posts since starting my blog, and soon, my blog and web site will be integrated into one, and we will leave WordPress for a new destination. I will keep you posted on the transition–should be seamless.

Ten days have already past in the new year and the last four days I have been down with the flu.  Well, a version of the flu, without the fever & chills, but all the other bells & whistles.  I thought I’d have a huge dent made in my 2012 taxes by now.  Much of the beginning of the month was spent picking my jaw off the floor when I found out that the really old version of Quicken I use for my business expenses will not convert my data into a newer version.  I am mad!  I am furious!  I’ve been online with Intuit to tell them that they left some of us high & dry.  I realize I had an old version, really old, but for the Macintosh, they did not do a lot of updates.  I have spent countless hours online doing searches for “best accounting software for a small business”, “best bookkeeping software for a sole proprietor”, “best bookkeeping software for a jeweler”, best spreadsheet–anything!!  I refuse to purchase another Intuit product!!  Help!  I just had a thought, I’ll change my search to “best software for an artist”–maybe there is something creative out there.

new ideas...

new ideas…

In four weeks, I’ll be leaving for Tucson and the wonderment of Gem Show!  Thanks to Laura for coaxing me down there over 10 years ago.  I’ll likely turn this creative blog into a ‘foodie visits Tucson’ blog like last year.  We do have our favorite Mexican restaurants–maybe we’ll try something new this year.

Goals for the new year include: trying out Goldie Bronze Clay by Hadar Jacobson, breaking in a new kiln for base metal clays, taking an enameling workshop with Linda Darty, (an amazing artist), setting stones in sterling silver, making rings & bracelets, making more texture plates, hopefully making some new tear-away sheets as mine are worn out, and last but not least, being less hard on myself and having more fun!  Oh and hauling my desktop Mac to the Apple store to get it to speed up–it is soooooo slow!

Here comes the Sun...

Here comes the Sun…

After a long fall season, things are finally winding down for me–I hope for you all as well!  I still have a collection of pieces at the Foothills Art Center in Golden.  The Holiday Art Market runs through Dec. 29th, if you received some cash for the holidays that you want to spend.  Also, the Evergreen Gallery has a great selection, Baby Does Clothing, and Heart of Oneness, both in Golden, as well as Creator Mundi in Cherry Creek North, and Barbara & Co on Old South Gaylord Street.

Looking forward to 2013, my website and blog will soon be integrated and will have a new look!  I am excited to have hired a great web designer, Jimmy Sellars, to redesign it and I hope to keep both updated often.  It’s almost ready for it’s inaugural launch.

In February, I’ll be heading down to Tucson for the amazing Gem Show.  I look forward to seeing lots of old friends and finding some amazing new materials to design with in the coming year.

I heard a great quote once, and love using it–“my best work is yet to come”.  So check back often, as I will continue to create new things in the coming year.  I often feel my life is blessed and I wish for everyone, many blessings, good health & happiness in the coming year!

Welcome to my newly organized work room...

Happy 2012!   I find my self looking ahead to an exciting year–new creations to be made, new techniques to be learned.  Last year I made a list of all the jobs I do–about 11 came up.  Have I farmed out anything?  Not really!  But I’ve learned to be more forgiving and more organized.  I recently moved out of my work room, and then back in after removing old carpet and painting the walls, and having the floors sanded.  Next time I’ll remember not to schedule floor sanding in the fall!

the PMC area, and cat window

I recently received an annual report from WordPress, in 2011 I made 18 new posts to my blog, uploaded 40 new pictures.  I have the intention to blog more, hopefully I’ll be more organized to do that.  My new year’s resolution is to manage my time better!  I look forward to making a trip to Tucson this winter and I hope to travel to the PMC Conference in June.  And this is the time of year to look at summer art festival schedules and make sure I know when the deadlines are.

a few cats hanging out

Last year I wanted to add more color to my work–I succeeded in setting quite a few stones.  I also did some mixed metals, a bit of enameling.  This year I want to do more with color–and try new things.

Thanks to Ikea and my handyman, Paul, new shelves in the bead area

That was a trip around my work space, newly decorated and still in progress.  Curtains yet to be hung.  The new IKEA was a big help with my new desk tops, cardboard organizers, bookcase.  I found a great space for this painting by Julie Puma from 2002, Grandma Rachel’s desk, and the cat tree was last to fit in.

back to my desk and calendars

painting by Julie Puma, famous artist & teacher

And a few finds from my travels to Cedarburg, and Columbus.  (Wisconsin & Ohio that is)

yes, it does

how I felt at the end of this season!

Ode to Robert & Tony

I took a fun workshop through “The Artists’ Nook” in Fort Collins yesterday with Richard Salley.  It was called “The Over-the-top Hinged Bracelet” class–what fun to spend the day with old and new friends and an amazing teacher/artist!   Thanks to Christine for offering this class.  I had a bead I bought from Tony Blackwell that served as the focal, and under that I used some “faux bone” from Robert Dancik.  And with Richard’s help, we constructed the cuff, and made the hinge with cold connections.  I learned a ton, and was inspired by all the talented artists who attended the class.  I’ve had the faux bone for a few years, and the focal bead, it was a good challenge to get the two to work together.  My other challenge today was to set up my photo area in my garagio studio, in hopes that I shoot more photos of new work.  This shot was the second batch.  The fun with using a digital camera, is running back and forth to my desk in the “bead room” to look at the photos on my computer, going back to revise the set up for a better shot.

I added links to all the above mentioned names, The Artists’ Nook has lots of classes upcoming, one in fact with Robert Dancik coming soon in October.  She also offers lots of journaling workshops, a great way to express yourself.  Subscribe to their e-mail notification for notices about upcoming workshops.

Back to work, my head is swimming with new ideas–focus, focus!

one of the first pearl vessels....

I was suggested by my friend and amazing artist, Candice Wakumoto to be interviewed for the “Muse Personality” on Tonya Davidson’s Musings and Mullings of the metal clay variety, April 18th, 2011. You can read both of our interviews by going to Tonya’s blog. I met Tonya many years ago, my first trip to Tucson, at an informal Flame Off, where Bronwen Heilman and others were working their magic on a few torches that were set up at someone’s home.  Her company has grown into a large business, supplying metal clay and all kinds of tools. I am honored to be included in her series of interviews!  And read about my friend, Helga, the current Muse Personality.

intricacy in nature

In the interview, I mentioned nature as inspiration.  When you look at all the intricacies and colors, the details in nature, amazing…


The garden in the spring is so fragrant, delicate, in bloom…

bleeding heart

And in the sea, circular patterns inspire…

intricate shell

On to art….Amazing patterns and colors appear in art, this mask, made by an unknown artist we bought in Costa Rica, I love all the detail and again color..

Costa Rican mask

And a very old section of a stained glass piece we installed 20 years ago in our house, the detail and color I love.

stained glass

As we sit down at our bench to design, hopefully these colors & images will inspire.


red flower



orange flower



purple flowers


I am looking for inspiration for color.   That said, how to do, how to achieve?  I like creating small paper images and covering them with resin.  I like coloring resin.  On the list to try & perfect: enameling, colored pencils, setting more stones.  Tomorrow I challenge myself in the ceramics studio by glazing some of my olive dishes and salt bowls.  Glazing is always a tricky thing for me.  I’ll also work on some metal clay.  I like to patina metal.  I like the color that bronze clay & copper clay can achieve.  I like the surprise when opening a steel firing container filled with charcoal & digging for the treats. Side note: these shots were taken in California with a point & shoot camera.  I’m amazed at the technology, or maybe it’s my amazing Mac monitor….

roasted vegetables, yummmmmm

Okay, I’ve been cooking & feasting instead of blogging!  We had a big Easter Eve celebration with friends.  And we had leftovers to make a second great meal.  Risotto with ginger, & sweet potatoes, roasted cornish game hens, roasted beets, red & yellow, turnips, and asparagus.  Great carrot cake.  The blessings of friends.

salt bowls

I’ve had my hands back in the earthenware clay, throwing for the upcoming Colorado Potters sale & show.  Makes for dry skin!  A suggestion from a friend, calendula helps, my hands feel young again.  More to come….

raku birdhouse

I’m back from a short break, spring break, as it’s called.  Hope to start working on raku clay, to do some raku firings.  This old birdhouse was made & fired during a Bob Smith workshop.  The colors & textures are amazing.  A bit burned on the top rim of the pot, markings from the straw we used, the unglazed lower half.  I tried once, to fire a piece of metal clay with raku glaze on it.  My kiln at the time was firing strangely, and the entire piece melted into a blob in the bottom of the kiln.  Still have the jar of glaze.  Will use it on some raku clay instead. The metal clay experiment was an expensive blob!

Found art, Winter Park ski area, Colorado

Came across this sculptural piece of art in the woods today.  I’m calling it “found art”.  As you can see, a ski patrolmen is skiing by.  I’m not sure who shimmied up this tree trunk to place the antlers & skulls there, will have to do some research, I guess.  Glad I had packed my camera in my backpack.

It was a good break, no TV, no internet, had to travel to see a few of the NCAA tournament games.  Must get back to the work mode now.

trying to photograph resin...

As you may have noticed, I’ve been trying to post a daily blog.  (Sometimes I take the weekend off.)  I am trying to set a record for myself, as in the past I blogged 7 times in my most prolific month.  In February I hit an all time high of 18 posts, and for March, I’m trying to top that.  It makes me think about what I’ve accomplished that day.  Some days involve getting all your consignment items inventoried and making new inventory sheets.  Sometimes it means cleaning your work area.  I think of it as “I have to Feng Shui” my space so that I am inspired to work again.  Some days are spent trying to figure out how to photograph resin!  Some days are spent pondering what to do, making lists, looking at schedules.  I’ve been trying to get a walk in daily, and without my dog, who went to dog heaven last November, there are days that I need motivation.  Clean out the cob webs, breathe in some fresh air!  Sometimes that involves creating a new playlist on my iPod to truck down the street to.  I saw some crocuses peeking through the dirt today.  Spring is coming…And one thing I know for sure, the last few days have flown by–does the clock have anything to do with that?

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 24 other followers

My 2013 Schedule so far…

Denver Potters Assoc. Holiday Show
6th Avenue United Church
3250 E 6th Ave
Dec 5, 6, 7, & 8

Arvada Center Fine Art Market
Dec 12 - 22

My Home Holiday Show
December 13 & 14

Gallery of my Work