Balnacra Arts & Pottery by Vicky Stonebridge

Instagram- #MarchMeetTheMaker

Instagram has a feature for makers running through March , ” meet the maker ” with keywords or phases as prompts for everyday. I missed the first few days but loved seeing everyone elses posts so felt compelled to join in and catch up. It’s certainly making me focus and think about things so far, some of the day’s are going to be challenging, I thought I’d share my posts here too.


1. YOU

Late to the party as usual! Joining in with#marchmeetthemaker day1 is ‘you’, so here I am throwing a wee pot. I’m a #potter#artist#comic#creator#designer#community worker, ex#firefighter hack of all trades making my way best I can in the North West Highlands. I have three grown up children, am 52 yrs old, live with my partner Andrew and crazy doggo Lobo. I have cold feets, a sniffly nose, ptsd and polycystic liver disease, I’ve lived a pretty busy, hectic, creative life and now it’s all about slowing down and putting creativity, health and wellbeing higher up the agenda.
#meetthemaker #potter #craftsmaker #artist #meetthepotter
 — at Balnacra Arts & Pottery by Vicky Stonebridge.

 

 

 

 

 


2. WHERE

#marchmeetthemakerday2, ‘where’ …here! I live and work around #lochcarron on the #northwesthighlands of #scotland#Remote #rural#beautifulscenery #isolated. Reliant on seasonal tourist trade, not much of a living to be made, the alternative is driving for hours for decent jobs, with my health thats no longer an option. Happy to be working near home, surrounded by this scenery, scarily economically precarious, especially at this time of year!

#meetthepotter #meetthemaker#scottishpottery #valuethearts#remoterural #starvingartist#canteatscenery #livingthedream #nc500#highlandmagic #highlands #mountains#northern #westerross


 

3. HOW YOU STARTED

Still on catch-up with #marchmeetthemaker day3 is ‘how you started’ , here’s me drawing at school aged 6? Or so. I remember drawing around age 5 and saying “I’m going to be an artist when I grow up” mind you I also wanted to be a fossil hunter, explorer and bandit, I’m still working on those.

#meetthepotter #meetthemaker#howyoustarted #whenigrowup #originsstory

 

 

 

 


3. HOW YOU STARTED

another #marchmeetthemaker day3 #howyoustarted so few photos from the olden days! I first learnt to throw pots at school with my wonderful art teacher, didn’t get on so well with Edinburgh art college, painting dept didn’t like my stuff, too many fairies dragons and celtic damsels in distress, just not 80’s enough for them, so angrily I specialised in ceramics instead. Learnt not a lot there either, just how to talk about my work with pretentious words really. Here’s me at my degree show in a mermaid dress my friend Judi made me, with my angry celtic pagan pottery drums and goddess pots.

#alwaysasquarepeg #meetthepotter #meetthemaker #edinburghcollegeofart #artdegreeshow #ceramics #bahonsdegree — at Balnacra Arts & Pottery by Vicky Stonebridge.

 


4. FAVORITE TO MAKE

#marchmeetthemaker day4 ‘favourite to make’? Whatever I’m working on! I like sculpting figures and faces, but love throwing too, i enjoyed doing some big vases tonight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


5. PHOTOGRAPHY

#marchmeetthemakerday5 #photography. I don’t often get up into the hills, between us work takes up most days, it’s hard going on my wrecked knees and feet, my confidence isn’t great as a cyst can rupture agonisingly at any moment… But when I do get into the mountains it’s incredible, so life affirming, every hill is a bucket list achievement, memories to hold onto, the perspective, views, geology, height, giddying curvature of the earth stretching away, heart pounding silence and those gorgeous rocks.
Sometimes I leave wee clay men for the rain to wash back into the landscape.

#meetthemaker #meetthepotter #nc500#westerross #mountains #hillwalking#northwesthighlands #walkhighland#weepeople #claypeople #beinnliathmhor #geology

 


6. WORKSPACE  

#marchmeetthemaker #workspace day6 the old #smithy that I work in is a fantastic space, it’s my third studio and when i set it up as a temporary #pop-up in 2015 it was end of an 8 year gap with no pottery workspace. The building had closed as a blacksmiths in the 1950s, it was built sometime before 1817. It was restored to be a heritage centre in 1990 but fell into neglect and was closed and abandoned by 2007. When I took it on it was waterlogged and full of rotting items piled up in storage, there was a layer of mud to clear out. Flooding and roof leaks are still an occasional problem but most of the year I manage to keep it dry. It’s pretty difficult to heat so i loose some weeks in the winter when it’s too cold for the clay to behave. It’s a brilliant big space for teaching in and such a quirky building full of character and history, i feel very lucky to have this space now.
#potterystudio #meetthepotter#meetthemaker

 

 


7. ROUTINE

#marchmeetthemaker nearly caught up! Day7 #routine. I was never a routine person, every day was a different job, they’d be interupted by emergency fire call outs or some crisis or another. I still can’t plan ahead without anxiety because I was so used to a level of chaos that wrecked any plans. But now a routine has happened, pottery studio most days, and I’m so brain foggy with #perimenopause, that without routine I’d be stood in the kitchen doorway all day wondering what i was supposed to be doing.
Some members of the family are all about the routine, Mr Lobo demands that as soon as breakfast and emails are done, its walkies time, a particular route, and the frisbee or stick thrown a certain amount of times at certain places. I love this bit of routine before work the best. Lobo’s joy in the here and now is infectious, it sets the day up just right.

#meetthepotter #meetthemaker#everydaymenopause #middleage#brainfog #slowingdown #collieplay#dogsarefamily #timeout #maketimetoplay#grateful

 

 

 


8. FLATLAY

#marchmeetthemaker day 8.
#flatlay well i have to admit I had no idea what this meant until I looked it up! Here’s a quick one! I think I will be doing more of these. I do need to up my game with photographing my work.

#pottery #potterytechniques #meetthemaker #meetthepotter #potterytools.

 

 

 

 


9. HOW IT’S MADE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


10. TIME TO RELAX


11. BRANDING


12. POSTAGE AND PACKAGING


13. WORKCLOTHES


14. DREAMS AND PLANS


15. BOOMERANG


16. HELPER


17. CUSTOMERS AND FEEDBACK


18. INSPIRATION


19. CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT


20. TOOLS AND MATERIALS


21. STORIES, A DAY IN THE LIFE


22. SKETCHBOOK AND LISTS


23. HANDS AT WORK


24. ACHIEVEMENTS


25. BEING A MAKER MEANS


26. BOOKS, BLOGS, PODCASTS


27. RECOMMEND A MAKER


28. ORGANISED


29. COMMUNITY


30. TOP TIP ADVICE


31. CREATIVE FRIENDS


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This entry was posted on March 8, 2018 by in Blog, The Pottery Studio.

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