New Ceramic Plaque


It took me quite a while to glaze my ceramic plaque, ‘Above a field of sunflowers in Ukraine’  I just couldn’t make up my mind how to go about it.  Should I use stains, under glazes or just oxides? And how make the crosses stand out and not disappear into the back ground?
In the end I settled for cobalt oxide for the blue bits and manganese and red iron oxide for the rest. I chased a bit of shiny transparent glaze into the crosses, so that they would stand out more, but the rest of the plaque is covered in a very thin layer of matte transparent glaze.

I made the plaque after reading about the airplane that was shot down above a field of sun flowers in the Ukraine.
I so wanted some kind of resolution, but it didn’t really happen in the way I anticipated. I wanted my plaque to be a prayer for the deceased, I wanted to feel that the victims of the plane crash rose,  like in a Stanley Spencer painting, like angels into heaven. They objected. All I could feel for days was anger and confusion.
In the end I had to back off and merely make a picture of what the situation looked like from my perspective.
I used paper clay to make this plaque – paper clay is normal clay mixed with paper pulp or flax which makes it very strong and light. You can add wet paper clay to dry and even bisque fired clay, which gives you a lot of freedom to create basically anything you want..

This is a link back to my original post about this work.


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Ceramic torso sale

I recently had a ceramic sculpture sale in my studio in Hastings in order to free up some space in my studio.

simona w lizards

Green Simona was one of the first to go…

Green Angel,

…followed by ‘Green Angel’. This torso is smoke fired and the red is caused by the smoke turning the normally green copper oxide red.


‘Ondine’, the water sprite was next. Went to a good home in the Old Town, it did.
I had more or less decided to stop making torsos as I want to focus on new lines of work, such as interior design projects, but several people commissioned me to create a  torso specially  for them. So I guess it’s back to the grindstone. I love it, really.


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Mandarin Oriental Hotel Commission

My Taipei hotel commission is finally completed! I was asked by a firm of interior designers in London to create some ceramic flower designs for the lobby of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Taiwan.They have now been installed inside the archway behind glass and a metal grille. 

MOTPE Lobby  大廳

Originally, my brief was to create the porcelain flowers for the ceiling in their grand ball room. I loved the idea of an entire ceiling covered in flowers!

MOTPE Lobby 大廳

Perhaps next time?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Above a field of sunflowers in Ukraine, July 2014

When I heard about the airplane shot down above Ukraine, I felt an almost physical pain. I think it was the smiling faces of the victims on the news, pictures of scattered teddy bears and guide books to Bali that made the situation almost unbearable. The images of sunflowers and blue skies looked idyllic next to the mangled remains of what used to be flight MH 17.

After a few days I had this dream, or vision, where people rose like angles from the sunflowers and into the arms of the Godhead or Gaia. I am not sure how these pictures entered my mind, but they did, and I would light a candle and actively try to visualize how all these lost souls found their way home in peace and joy.

I drew the image, and then I started to make a ceramic plaque – just to strengthen the vision and make it as real as I possibly could. I wanted to use the image to give more power to my prayer.
This is the start;



I got stuck while making the angels…I spent several days trying to create these symbols of resolution, willing  ‘a happy ending’ upon an intolerable situation.
But it felt wrong. I made so many different versions of angels and they all looked Disney-fied to me. They were almost cute. Beatrix Potter meets Meinrad Craighead.  I felt uneasy and spent days just walking around hating my work.  I could not understand why. I was praying with images, after all. Why did it feel so false? Where had my sense of purpose gone?

Then I sensed the anger and the fury and the confusion emanating from inside those fields in Ukraine. Again, the sensation was almost physical.
I realized that I had not been listening  properly; I had been trying to force a neat little conclusion on to an ongoing situation by turning all these people into happy little Spirits, flying up and uniting with the Great Goddess.

I don’t know what happens after death. But I have a feeling that life may go on much as usual with challenges and bewildering situations. I feel that the anger and the fury still rages among the sunflowers. But the Goddess is there. She is always there.

So, this is how the plaque ended up looking for now. It still needs to be fired and glazed.



Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Ceramic Plaque

This is the final edition of the ceramic plaque I started a week or so ago


Now all I have to do is to make sure it doesn’t warp during the drying process!

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Ceramic plaque, July 4th

I am using paper clay for a series of dream – diary inspired plaques; this is the first one in the series.

Day one; after a few hours in the studio,  thoughts and dreams begin to escape from my head and show themselves to me..I am expecting dire nightmares but feel cool as a cucumber…The monster top left IS blowing fire, but I’m not scared. Yet.



Leaves and flowers are sprouting from my ear…yeah.

Day two;


More leaves and a dragon fly. There are also some more flames coming out of my head…


I have now paced the studio floor for hours and I think this is it…
I’m going to wait until tomorrow to see if there is more.



Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Summer solstice fox

Picking raspberries for breakfast this beautiful solstice morning. And there he is…
fox 20 june 14
Foxy. Fast asleep in the early morning sunshine.
fox 20 june

I can hear him snore as I tiptoe closer … Will he rush off in a panic if I get too close?


But breakfast calls…So needs must; I start crashing through the raspberry canes, reaching for the juicy red glorious berries…Mmm


As I tramp about filling my bowl, the cool little fox just turns over, yawns, and, covering his nose with his beautiful tail,  falls back into a dream.
I have never fed him, and I don’t know how he got so tame. The only thing he seems to fear around my house and garden is…
SkittleAsleep (1)_edited

The Skittle Cat. Lord of all he surveys. Should have called him Greebo.

Happy Solstice, everyone.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

…and still, I rise

This has to be one of the most life confirming poems. It is written by Maya Angelou.

May she rise, far and wide, in her new adventure.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Garden and Fox


So many plans for tidying up the garden today; but how can I mow my lawn with a fox fast asleep in the middle of it?

So instead I do some light weeding; the recent rain has made everything shoot up overnight


The tree fern is looking very impatient…

DSCF4674_editedThis palm tree used to live in a pot in my greenhouse. I’m guessing she likes it better free range.

DSCF4672_editedLambs ears, roses and figs…


Fox is curious about my chicken poo pellets

The bees are mad about my echium pininana



…and fox says; chill.




Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments



A clutch of Fat Birds winged their way out of the studio over the last few days

Fat Birds,

which is rather nice.

I am beginning to plot new adventures in the studio; it is great to be able to enter without experiencing palpitations.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 6 Comments