Darlene Foster's Blog

Posts Tagged ‘pottery

I spent some fabulous days with my talented daughter when I was back in Canada last fall. I´ve written about her and her pottery here and here. She is doing well and has recently had her pottery on display at numerous galleries in Vancouver. Here is one piece that was on display and sold. Isn’t it adorable? You can see more of her one of a kind pottery on her website which she updates regularly. She also ships all over the world.

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She asked me to deliver some pottery ordered by a friend in Calgary since I was going there. She mentioned my Christmas gift would be waiting for me when I got there. I transported the package from Vancouver to Medicine Hat and then on to Calgary with the same care I would give a newborn. I´m happy to report it arrived safely and the owner of the pottery was very pleased with her purchase. This is what was in the box.

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A goddess incense burner and covered mug.

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Note the goddess handle on the mug.

Her friend then handed me my package. In it was a Creative Goddess, made by my daughter’s friend.

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Along with it came a scroll with these words-

Creative Goddess was lovingly created specially for you. She has an uplifting energy, that encourages creativity and a calm mind. She is associated with the Crown Chakra, representing pure thought and connection with infinite consciousness. Deep Spiritual Understanding. She is connected to mother goddess, fertility and womb. Representing the way the universe would evolve and constantly change. bringing an awareness of being a part of a whole. She also helps one on their spiritual journey, direction and progress. She is adorned with a Clear Quartz Crystal. This special stone is the supreme gift of Mother Earth. Clear Quartz also amplifies whatever energy or intent is programmed into it. This may accelerate the fulfillment of one’s prayer, intensify healing, spiritual growth and manifestation of a goal.

What a special Christmas gift! I love my Creative Goddess and am happy she is here with me in Spain.

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The Creative Goddess with pieces of Marcelle’s pottery

 

It just so happens that my daughter’s childhood friend, Gillian, is the daughter of my good friend. I have known Gill since she was six and have watched her grow into a special woman and an exceptional mother. Here are some samples of her awesome felt work.

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Check out Gill’s website for more about her and the amazing work she does.

Follow both artists on Instagram

gillianwhite11 Magick Weaver • Soul Worker • Healer • Priestess • Fiber Artist • Ritualist • Intuitive www.gillian-white.com

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madmudslinger  Ceramic creations from a quiet place in the forest. Shop the online gallery www.madmudslinger.com

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I am proud of these young women who follow their passion, embrace a peaceful life and create from the heart. I consider myself lucky to have these creative goddesses in my life. 

We read in the local paper about an artisans market, in a small town not much more than an hour away from where we live. Since we both love markets and small Spanish villages, we decided to take a drive and check it out. Alcalali proved to be a delightful, traditional Mediterranean village including original dry stone walls. The name, Alcalali, is an Arabic word meaning place where pots were made.

Pottery in the place were pottery is made with the old dry stone wall behind

Pottery in the place where pots were made, with original dry stone wall behind

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Pottery faces

The market was small but unique in that everything sold had to be hand made and by the person manning the stall. Local potters, weavers, wood carvers, almond candy makers, jewellers, leather and iron workers, and ladies who make lace were willing to chat and demonstrate their work. Some even gave lessons to the children. Throughout the displays, old fashioned table games and traditional delicacies could be found.

Wood carver

Wood carver at work

Lace makers

Traditional lace makers

Mortar and pestle to mash sugar, almonds, zest of lemon and cinnamon for making almond candy called turron

Mortar and pestle to mash sugar, almonds, zest of lemon and cinnamon to make delicious almond candy called turron

Pottery lesson

Pottery lesson

Playing a medieval game

Playing a medieval table game

In the centre of the village, a medieval tower built in the fourteenth century served as a watchtower and stronghold to protect the town from pirates and robbers that frequently attacked the village. It is now a museum with incredible views of the town and surrounding valley from the top floor. What I found very interesting was the medieval graffiti on the walls, most of it drawings of ships and weapons. Since Alcalali is an inland village, historians think the drawings were made by sailors imprisoned in the tower at one time.

The village church from the tower

The village church from the tower

View of the town and valley

View of the town and valley from the tower

Roofs from the tower window

Clay roofs from the tower window

Ancient graffiti

Ancient graffiti possibly drawn by prisoners

Alcalali is in an agricultural area, well known for its olive, grape, citrus fruit and almond production. The Arabs occupied the area for over five centuries and were masters in utilising the fertile ground of red clay, developing a thriving agricultural base. Many houses still have the large doors that allowed animals and carts inside, with rings in the entrance to tie up the mules. We enjoyed a visit to the old oil mill that has been turned into a museum displaying some of the original machinery for making olive oil,wine and raisins.  Pictures of when the mill was in operation helped to explain the process.

Museum in the old oil mill

Museum in the old oil mill

Olive picking tools

Olive picking tools used to knock the olives from the tree

Typical Alalali street

Typical Alcalali street including a house with large doors to allow animals and carts inside in the old days

Original dry stone wall

Original dry stone wall

No visit to a traditional Spanish village would be complete without sampling some of the local tapas in a friendly bar, which is just what we did before heading home. Another great day!

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I have written about my wonderful potter daughter here before. She doesn’t live very far from me but since her home is on a small gulf island, it requires  two ferries and a boat to get to her place. Total driving, waiting and sailing time is about 5 hours one way. I don’t get to visit her often but when I do it is always worth it. This recent weekend between Christmas and New Year I made the trip and had so much fun. It’s always an adventure but once there, it is so relaxing, away from the constant busyness of my life. She always makes sure I am well fed and comfortable. I’m not allowed to lift a finger. Here are a few pictures of the weekend.

Daughter with 18 year old grandcat Barnsworth

Daughter with 18 year old grandcat Barnsworth

Cookbook Christmas gift that matches her kitchen

Cookbook Christmas gift that matches her kitchen

Daughter at home on her island

Daughter at home on her island

Pottery studio

The pottery studio where she creates

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Pottery from recent firing

Pottery from recent firing

Awesome pottery

More awesome pottery

I am so lucky, my daughter has created a safe haven for me to escape to any time.  Spending time with her is always a treat. Great conversations, time to reflect and lots of love.

A walk on her property

Going for a walk on her property

Where do you go to escape?

We had a quiet restful Christmas Day at our house, which was itself a welcome gift. On Boxing Day I travelled by ferry to Vancouver Island to meet my daughter in Nanaimo.  We had a wonderful time relaxing in a cozy coffee shop, visiting and exchanging gifts. 

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I brought Flat Ruthie along as she had never been to Nanaimo. She had heard about the famous Nanaimo bars though. Marcelle and Ruthie became fast friends, as I knew they would. Ruthie was taken with Marcelle’s Painted Pony Handbag.

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She was also intrigued with the Matcha Latte Marcelle ordered.  I had a vanilla almond latte which was also very good

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You may have read about my daughter the potter on previous posts and how proud I am of her: 

https://darlenefoster.wordpress.com/2012/07/26/alice-in-wonderland/

https://darlenefoster.wordpress.com/2011/06/07/the-mad-mudslinger/

I love all the pottery she has given me over the years but the urn she gave me this Christmas is totally amazing. As you can see, Flat Ruthie likes it too.

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Nanaimo has many wonderful bookstores so we dropped in at a used bookstore near the coffee shop. Marcelle bought three books on Feng Shui and I found one I couldn’t resist. Flat Ruthie and I had fun looking through it on the ferry ride home.

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 Nanaimo Bar Recipe

Bottom Layer
½ cup unsalted butter (European style cultured)
¼ cup sugar
5 tbsp. cocoa
1 egg beaten
1 ¼ cups graham wafer crumbs
½ c. finely chopped almonds
1 cup coconut

Melt first 3 ingredients in top of double boiler. Add egg and stir to cook and thicken. Remove from heat. Stir in crumbs, coconut, and nuts. Press firmly into an ungreased 8″ x 8″ pan.

Second Layer
½ cup unsalted butter
2 Tbsp. and 2 Tsp. cream
2 Tbsp. vanilla custard powder
2 cups icing sugar

Cream butter, cream, custard powder, and icing sugar together well. Beat until light. Spread over bottom layer.

Third Layer
4 squares semi-sweet chocolate (1 oz. each)
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter

Melt chocolate and butter over low heat. Cool. Once cool, but still liquid, pour over second layer and chill in refrigerator. Enjoy!

Taken from the City of Nanaimo’s website

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I hope you all had a wonderful Boxing Day as well!

 

From time to time I feel compelled to brag a bit about my children.  Today I want to share a few things about my daughter who I have blogged about here before. https://darlenefoster.wordpress.com/2011/06/07/the-mad-mudslinger/  She has been very busy making amazing pottery. Recently she was part of an Alice in Wonderland event on Gabriola Island where her pottery was displayed.  I think she makes a delightful Alice, don’t you?

 

 

 

 

 

Her artwork has been accepted for the 2012 Sooke Fine Arts Show.  So if you are in the Victoria area July 28 – August 6, stop in and view her work, as well as the work of many other talented artists.  She has followed her dream and I am so proud of her.

(If you click on the pictures, they become larger)

 

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My daughter Marcelle is an accomplished potter living on a small Gulf Island on the West Coast of BC. I am very proud of her as she is an excellent example of someone living out her dreams. It has not always been easy, but she has never lost sight of her passion to create from clay. She calls herself the Madmudslinger. Here is part of an article from the Gabriola Sounder which says much about her and her values.

 

Spotlight on Marcelle Glock
Kathy McIntyre
Gabriola Arts Council
Monday, June 6 2011

The Madmudslinger’s kiln stands like a sentinel, watching over this life-long potter’s house and studio on Mudge Island. Graham Sheehan, who she apprenticed with for 10 years, helped her build it in 2006 and with great relief, Marcelle has finally fired up her kiln after taking a long year away from her passion to finish building her home. With her workshop dismantled and packed away she found herself stacking rocks on the beach just to be artistic! And now, happily surrounding her kiln are many fantastic, one of kind wood-fired creations; each wildly different from the next and each with its own special inspiration, technique and charm.

Her goal from the beginning was ultimate self-sufficiency. Because she is a grand recycler and likes to leave a small footprint on the earth, she digs up her own local clay or gets scraps from other potters. She pulverizes clay that has become too hard to use, makes a giant clay soup and uses plaster molds to remove the excess moisture to renew clay. She says “I used to see the fact that I use found, recycled and free materials as a limitation, but now I embrace it.” She believes we need limitations to be creative and because Marcelle works with that sense of resourcefulness at her core, each of her pieces is unique and very special.

www.soundernews.com/fullstory/EFpZFZVkkEiCFNvkVX.shtml

JOY

Marcelle will be part of the Gabriola Studio Tour from October 8 – 10 this year.

http://www.gabriolaartscouncil.org


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