A place like home

We did finally get our house painted. It felt good to know that most of the money that helped get it done came from my pots.
It was once just white but we jazzed it up a bit. I love the pumpkin colored door.
About a year ago I started thinking about what it meant to me to be in the house everyday working, taking care of our family and really enjoying that fact that I did not having to go to a 9 to 5 job in some office. My office is right here at home and home and my hours are 6:30 to about 11 everyday! But, it is always a trade off.
I think I've said before that in my mind some of my pieces remind me of creatures or figures in some way. I have lots of customers tell me that as well. I worked a year or so ago on some sets of salt and pepper shakers that I wanted to enclose in some way and give a home to; not just a tray. I felt like I needed to bring my feelings of security and the comfort I feel being at home everyday into my work some how.

The set below is what I came up with. I called these guys " My opera house". All the frills and decorative elements that I embellished this tray with just screamed "Opera" to me.

I took this photo along with me to be critiqued by a well known potter I was doing a workshop with. At the time, I thought it was one of my best pieces. After the critique, I felt a bit different about the whole set. I was told it had a feeling of contriteness to it and was over done. I at that point agreed and put these pieces on the back burner for another time.

So...stay tuned.....I'm in a salt and pepper show and at the moment I'm back to my Opera houses. Photo's and thought to be posted soon!


Deb said...

I don't know who this potter is, but I don't think I agree. I wish I could click on it and see it larger. The only thing I find distracting (not that you asked) are the corks. I think feedback from other potters is great but that doesn't always mean they are completely right. Do you really agree with their critique or just think you should because they are "well known"?

Judy Shreve said...

Jen, Your piece is fabulous! Remember even if you value the person and his/her work -- it is only one person's opinion. Don't let that sway you from doing what you love. I can sorta agree with Deborah's cork assessment - only because with all of the decoration - it seems it might work better with a thrown/handbuilt stopper in the same glaze palette. And the glazes are wonderful too.
Good luck with the salt & pepper show.

Patricia Griffin Ceramics said...

Jen - I gotta agree with Deborah and Judy on this. It brings to mind a workshop I took. There was a girl in the class who had been a student of one of the instructors years before... She brought up something that he had said to her when she was a student in his college class. He had critiqued something and the comment had stayed with her for YEARS, affecting all of her future work. The instructors then talked with the class and really advised all of us not to be so quick to "own" the comments people make about our work... They also said they didn't want THAT much responsibility for the future direction of our work.

I guess the moral of the story is to take the comment on your shakers with a grain of salt. :)

Jen Mecca said...

Thanks guys. After I wrote that I thought I needed to write alittle bit more on my thoughts about the crit, but I was running out of "morning computer time".
I'll go back and edit a bit
Thanks for all the idea's..that was awesome!j

Anonymous said...

jen - okay, I'm not an expert but like the ladies above said, this is one opinion. I like it. I like it because to me I can see your hand in it. I see pieces of the Jen Mecca work I know with a splash of more frivolity in. Like those monster jugs I wrote to you about on Facebook.
Also, I think you captured the enfolding "them" into something more than a tray quite well.
My 2 cents. Angela

Kate Frichtl said...

I love your salt and pepper shakers Jen. When you look at them at a glance they look like they are alive and singing and dancing on stage. I couldn't think of a better name for them. They have so much movement.
(this coming from a stay at home mom whose artistic skills lie dormant)

Scott Smith said...

It's too bad that Jimmy Buffet didn't have one of your sets with it's own little house... maybe he wouldn't have lost his shaker of salt!

I agree with everyone else - it's just one person's opinion. You like them and your customers like them - that's all that matters!