Magpie {48}

Soda fired sake cup, with orange slip and shino liner glaze, by Joseph Morgan

A few weeks ago I took part in the North East Open Studios for the third time. It is the most wonderful event with over 230 artists, makers and designers taking part across Aberdeen City and Shire. I managed to take a day off to visit a few people taking part… but choosing who to see was difficult.

One easy decision was going down to Catterline to see my friend Joseph Morgan. Since I last saw Joe he has converted an old electric kiln into a gas-fired soda one, and he had some of the stunning results on display. I came away with this lustrous little sake cup, which has yet to be christened. I don’t have any sake, but I was thinking now that the nights are drawing in that a sloe gin might do the trick.


Sun rise

We’re past the winter solstice now and slowly our days are getting longer. This far north we’re lucky to have seven hours daylight during December, but the sun being so low in the sky does give a fantastic light – I can see why artists and photographers like it here. I’ve been spending the last few days gearing myself up to get throwing again and, come Monday I’ll be back in the studio… but today I spent a few hours at Aberdeen docks and beach searching for sunshine and inspiration.


Spark: eighteen

A series about people that have influenced my creative path

Eric Ravilious; South Coast Beach, 1939-1942, watercolour

We’ve been away for a long weekend – hence the lack of posts. The last four days have been spent campervanning along the north Aberdeen and Moray coasts – just wonderful.
I saw these WWII coastal defences along Burghead beach and they reminded me of two things… firstly the ‘tank stoppers’ that used to be on the beach where I grew up; and secondly of this picture by Eric Ravilious (1903-1942). I’ve long been an admirer of his work and I was pleasantly surprised to see some of his pieces in the Aberdeen Art Gallery on my first visit after we moved here. I’ve been there again this morning for another peek.