Professor and pottery instructor at several colleges in St. Louis, Rachel is an exceedingly talented ceramicist. She is classically trained with a BFA from the Kansas City Art Institute and MFA from Ohio University in 2006.
Her softly curved thrown vessels are accentuated and decorated with soft lines of glaze or texture. The pieces are then finished in soft colors, which she hopes will “allow people to slow down, carefully examine and be peaceful.”
I had the pleasure of spending last night at my alma mater. Each spring UWSP’s Art and Design department hosts NOWhere, a conference which features workshops and presentations by two high profile designers as well as presentations by alumni (me!).
Last night’s featured designer was Chase, a Belgium native who originally began painting murals throughout Los Angeles with the simple intent of spreading his message throughout the world.He has since been recognized for his unique style and has created custom pieces for big companies and licensed his work to be used on everything from housewares to skateboards.
He uses two basic motifs over and over, each with a well-defined concept behind them. My favorite is the “Awareness Geezers,” which are these characters with very large eyes who have gained a wisdom of sorts. When Chase paints these he finishes the piece by spraying stenciled “truths” on top.
Some of my favorite pieces are the ones that consist almost wholly of these spray painted “truths.” When I saw the installation above during his presentation, all I could think was “I want that in my house!” Luckily, Chase was kind enough to give us all a tiny piece of his work — after the presentation, we all went outside and he painted anything we wanted. I got my purse painted with his signature eyes!
This has been a week of getting very close finishing up several projects — thank God because I also happened to start quite a few new ones last week and I’m just barely keeping up.
Although I still have to cut and assemble the above invitation suite, they’re all printed and they turned out beautifully.
I’m also thisclose to wrapping up a project I mentioned waaaaay back in October for the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art. I designed the logo, save the date and invitation, poster and large-scale window clings that will soon plaster the front of the museum. A very special thanks to Jason Gaylor who created the foliage photoshop brushes that are and integral part of the whole identity.
Throughout the historic parts of New Orleans, the streets are labeled with ceramic tiles embedded into the sidewalk. These beautiful antique tiles are the inspiration for Chris & Nicolle Psilos of nolatiles.com. The duo specializes in home decor items that bring a little bit of NOLA anywhere!
They agreed to share a bit about the business:
This whole thing really evolved out of our love for New Orleans. Using such a unique piece of the city as a basis for our work makes it extremely enjoyable to create our pieces.
Getting started was an extremely intimidating process because we really never considered ourselves “artists” and basically taught ourselves everything through trial and error. We spent lots of time researching many different processes until we decided on our final items: coasters, magnets, plaques and ornaments/displays.
Everything is created in our home and all “raw materials” (with the exception of the heavy duty magnet paper) is purchased over the counter at stores/markets around the city. The most crucial ingredient is the actual picture of the letter or number that we’re using at the time. We literally took thousands of pictures and filtered them down to about 50 or so different images that we use.
Even though we’ve only been at this for less than a year, I can say with confidence that we now do feel like “artists” and are working tirelessly to improve our items that we create!
Self-described as creepy and whimsical, Colleen of Loopy Boopy creates art dolls that are eerily beautiful. Each polymer clay piece is sculpted individually and only once — Colleen doesn’t even sketch them out first! She then adds embellishments, often vintage textiles, and finishes them with a little paint. Her inspiration comes from within — whatever her mood is that day — and from all around her — the amazing characters that make up New Orleans.