Hold fast to dreams,
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird,
That cannot fly.
If you know me, you know I hustle to do this work. Unurth has been a passion project of mine. This little company is a way to bridge the divide between my dreams and reality. In order to get it here, I have been doing it in my off time- rolling up my sleeves and digging in. I had a full-time job as a designer and was moonlighting as a ceramicist. (Or was it the other way around?) Time has been tight and I am overdue for a change!
I am thrilled to announce I will be collaborating and assisting the amazing Lela barker of Lucky Break Consulting! She has graciously chosen me to help her build her empire as I build mine. Upwards and onwards! (Seriously, I am still pinching myself- you can read a bit about it here) Take a look at what she is up to- major creative business building magic. She put her time in developing her company, Bella Lucce and she is giving it right back. I'll be doing a little bit of everything for her.
What that means for Unurth is there will be more space for my ideas and my work. The holidays coming up will get my full attention and I have some very exciting ideas for 2014. Or should we call it the year Unurth shoots for the stars!
I won't lie though, I am still a little beat after the events of the summer and jumping in head first to this new adventure. I have plans for several new artfully crafted items. Before I start designing next year's collection, I need to commune with some flora and fauna. Just me, no distractions, slate clean! I will be sharing this process the whole way. That journey is the art of these objects- the collecting, dreaming, listening, meditating, and exploring. I cannot wait!
Bit by bit, one step closer!
This post is a little personal than usual, but I felt I had to share. Being a soloprenuer with a day job can be pretty nuts. Throw family in and tough times and keeping moving can, at times, seem like an insurmountable task.
Grandpa was a generous and brave man. He flew P-38s in WWII. Always had a smile on his face, and a joke in his heart. He always helped anyone with a dream and a goal- family or not.
Over the past 5 months, I have been experiencing the slow decline of my grandfather. Bedridden and hospitalized since February, he has not been really with us since the week before he went in. He has been like a father to me and is totally part of the reason I am able to pursue my dreams. Being at his side during the decline has been really difficult, but I wouldn't change it.
There are no easy answers to any of it, but these little actions have helped me get through.
I had this one weekend where I had an event with my brother, then a craft show I had to pack for, and my family was having a meltdown. All I wanted to do was hide under the covers. So I did. For a little while. Then I just started packing my stuff for the show. One box at a time. I took my time, and didn't think too hard. Eventually it all made it in the car and I knew I would get through it. I felt better for the movement. Sometimes thinking 10 steps ahead are just too many.
Just start with that first thing and you'll be ok.
Give yourself you time. Grief and hardship must be given time to process- to just wrap your head around what is going on and prepare for what may come. I took walks. I sat outside with a journal at sunset and just listened to the crickets thrum. I meditated. Pressuring myself to work through it and be creative would not have been the right thing to do. Burning out on all ends would leave me no energy to help my family.
Listen to yourself and give the time you need to move through.
What has amazed me is the most unlikely people were there for me when I was the most vulnerable. They weren't always my closest friends, but they were people who have experienced similar tragedies and just knew. They knew what to say and what not to say. They knew to just give you a hug or squeeze a smile out of you.
Be alone when you need it, but know when to have a little company. It can heal.
of yourself, of your family. Eat. Sleep. Take a shower. You still need to be human while these emotionally draining events occur. A little bit of self love goes a long way to helping you manage through.
Go to the hospital. Be by their side. Hold your loved one's hand. Talk to them, even when you think they can't hear. Sometimes it is not just about them feeling your presence. You need to process and say the things that are important. Do it now and you regret it. When the time comes, you'll know you did what you could and gave what you had.
There is so much you don't have control over. Accept that and be in the moment with your loved one. Focus on what you can to and roll with what comes across your path. There were weeks where there was a huge change everyday. Better and worse and it was a real roller coaster. There was nothing to be done, but just be there. Same then as now with the grief, when a wave comes, just ride it out.
There is no easy way and often time and mindfulness is the best cure. I hope if you are reading this you find a way to cope. If you have gone through and have some helpful tips, please share!
Thanks and Hugs.
Tool : anything used as a means of accomplishing a task or purpose
Sitting at the wheel the other day, I had one of those moments- the "of course, how simple!" type of moment where the path becomes a little clearer. My tools for ceramics define the marks I make in a very basic way. Kept clean, rust free, they serve. When you start to make your own... well that's when things start to get really interesting. The tools become great extensions of your way of creating.
Tools are power too, especially when you create them for your craft, for your self. By creating your own tools, you begin to alter your world in your own way unlimited by the constructs of others.
The question arises: How can you create new tools for your craft that alters your work and makes it more your own?
Tools are not only things you hold in your hand, they are your hand, your arm, your eye. What is a tool if it is not directed by your mind to create your vision? What is a tool if your body is incapable of directing it?
What you put in is what you get out. Care for your tools (mind, body, craft, design) and they will serve. Invest in them and they will surprise you.
I am marveled by the possibilities!
What is in your tool box?
Dwell on Design recently came through Los Angeles. Catering to Interior Designers, Dwell had at once a great mixture of Design, Architectural Materials, and Design Craft. Several trends stood out- Color Pop, Minimal Geometries, Playfulness, Material Juxtapositions, and Patterns (when they happened they made themselves known!)
For me, the most exciting part was meeting with some great ceramicists and seeing a peek at where Unurth can go. As a step up from the curated craft shows, this felt like it was one foot in the trade show camp, one foot in the retail camp, both with a focus on high quality craft and design.
A few of my favorites are below!
Gracious and gorgeous ceramics, emblazoned with iconography from everyday life.It was so delightful meeting her in person after having admiring her work and path for so long! Her advice>> Keep at it!
Handful of salt is a new publication focused specifically at the intersection of craft + design + art. It is so refreshing to see this directly addressed. This intersection has always been the most exciting for me and where I chose to focus my own work. Their curated exhibit, 100% CA showcased California craft designers and the work was absolutely beautiful.
Desigenr: Heather Palmer
Light and so exquisitely crafted, this work was both opulent and restrained. Take a peek through the blog and discover new amazing designers.
Designer: Andrea Sengesvik
Handcrafted in North Carolina, this little company amazed with lovely tessellation tiles and flocked (yes!) ceramics,
Architecturally inspired jewelry intertwines gracefully with the chain. Gorgeous.
Made in LA and right on target. These wall hangings were composed perfectly,
Sometimes products are planned and sometimes they just jump from the ether. This cup is one of those that sprung from the muse.
As I built the model for the new (and soon to be available!) Terrestrial Planter, I had some plaster left over. If you have ever worked with plaster, you know- time is of the essence! Right quick, I whipped up a ball of plaster into a cup like amoeba mass. Once the plaster was set enough, I went at it with a sureform. Let me tell you- I love this. Not knowing what will come, taking away and revealing a new form. It is an experience that is very alive. I am awake- not like any other time.
Uh oh... toooo much plaster!
Model is ready! Making the mold.
Cast decorated and ready for bisque firing!
Waxing bottoms! Ready for glaze.
What came about? Well, this lovely object- container, cup, planter, holder of tools. It cradles your hand. Sitting proud in rare form.
I hope you love this one. You can acquire one yourself in white, mint, or a custom color (send me a note) right here> Spirit Cup