Sunday, November 28, 2010

First Friday December

I will have some little pieces in a show opening at Metro Galleries on First Friday Dec. 3rd. Here are a few that will be for sale that evening. Also, the pieces in the previous post are coming out of the kiln tomorrow (fingers crossed) and if they turned out well they will join these two at the gallery. Enjoy!

Sunday, September 26, 2010


I carved away at my pottery today... I bought these little letters to print into the clay and I love them. I can't get enough. Enjoy the photos. It was fun! When they make there way out of the kiln I will post some more.

Saturday, September 25, 2010


My wheel is at my house again since I taught a lesson here last weekend. I am feeling good about it being so close... so I actually made a couple of things today. I am going to have some work in a show in December so my plan is to actually work here on the weekends a bit. Trying to work at school is just too much. It is so much more peaceful in my studio.

I was at at friend's house and found this in the yard... I love the texture and brought it home. It is from some sort of onion plant. So pretty... I want bunches of them in vases all over the place.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Visual Arts Festival at BMoA

Next Thursday September 9th is the opening of the Visual Arts Festivals, Small Works juried show at the Bakersfield Museum of Art. The theme this year is vessels. I am looking forward to seeing all the work; my green bowl (shown here) will be in the exhibit. Also opening that night at BMoA is Eye Gallery and the ceramic work of David Furman.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Bastille Week at Valentien Restaurant and Wine Bar

Ceramic, acrylic paint and jewels- Masks can be purchased at Valentien Restaurant and Wine Bar.

The artist reception was last weekend at Valentien. Here are some pictures of the finished masks I created. I ended up framing 4 of them in black boxes and I really like how they look against the light wall. Enjoy.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

In Progress for Bastille Day at Valentien

Valentien Restaurant and Wine Bar will be celebrating Bastille Day next month and they are planning a big event. They have asked artists to create masks for the event to be hung on the walls for the month of July. I started to create some yesterday and here is one that is finished in wet clay, but not yet fired. When I get them all finished I will post more pictures. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Dedicated to June 1st

You know how you (well maybe you don't do this, but I do) pile things on and feel like if you could just make it to a certain day (say June 1st) everything will be just fine? It's been one of those months for me. One thing after another until you forget that you actually signed yourself up for everything you've piled on. You did this to yourself you know. But if I could just get to June 1st. THAT would make it all better. Everything piled on this giant plate called life will be in the past and you can just sit and breath and relax into a moment of pressure-less-ness (I just made that word up, I hope it works for you).


It's June 1st and life feels a lot better.

Not to say I don't have a million other things I have to, scratch that, want to do.... but this does feel much better.

So, to all of us who are waiting to get to that one day. Cheers.

Remember it will come and it's most important to enjoy each... little... second.... that gets you there.

PS. This is our new little cat (the darker one is ours). I love the pattern on them... so sweet. Thank you to my student Lauren for giving him to us. We love him.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Picked up a Paint Brush

Summer is almost here, though the weather isn't telling. I have one more week of classes left at BHS and one day left of business at the gallery.

This summer is already filling up quickly with opportunities...

I received an e-mail out of the blue today about painting murals this summer at Lamont Elementary school. It is always fun to help make a school a little brighter. I think with a bit of color the students will feel more welcome. I am really looking forward to the meeting about it next week.

"Strength in Numbers" by me

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Bike Month = Bike Art

I found the little pressed flowers/foliage on the bike path one day and pressed it into this piece, along with the bike chain. This is a wall piece... I really like the way it turned out and I made quite a few.

I created these tumblers out of porcelain clay. I threw them on the wheel and then imprinted bike chain and gear into the surface. I hand carved the rest of the decoration. They are stained with a cobalt blue oxide and glazed on the inside and lip with celedon.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

"Winescapes" 2010

I just wrote this article to be published in the CAEA Painted Monkey as the Lead Article!

A Ceramic Artist Tackles a Wine Bottle
By Yvonne Cavanagh

I have always been drawn to texture and spend much of my time adding it to my ceramic work. After I throw on the wheel or hand build a piece I spend hours carving lines, holes, and scratching to create visual interest. I don’t draw out my ideas first but rather just begin. Even though I teach my students to draw thumbnail sketches, I don’t do this for my own designs (don’t tell them). I don’t really know how to explain how I feel as I work. It’s as if the piece tells me what and where to carve, when to stop and when to keep going.
As an artist, sometimes it’s fun to have an opportunity to create come to me. I have been asked by the Bakersfield Museum of Art ( for the last 3 years to turn a large 6 liter wine bottle into a work of art for a fundraising event they hold called “Winescapes”. They ask 30 artists to transform wine bottles and then the bottles are bid on in a silent and live auction. Patrons come and enjoy wine and food as they bid on the artistically transformed bottles. I am always excited and honored to participate. The artists attend the event and so many of us know each other and have spent time chatting, agonizing and celebrating each other’s bottles leading up to the event. As an artist we are used to creating what our imaginations or whim desires. It is an entirely different animal to be handed an object and asked to “turn it into a work of art”, one that (hopefully) a patron will want to purchase. I had never done anything like this before participating in 2008 and now look forward to it every year.
The first year (2008) when I picked up the bottle from the museum I thought to myself “This bottle is HUGE! What have I gotten myself into?” The bottle sat on my dining room table staring at me for a good two weeks. The light piercing though the pretty dark green glass only added to my apprehension. Each time I walked by that empty undecorated bottle I felt like it was watching me thinking to itself, “Yep, still here and you still have to make me into an amazing piece of artwork. No pressure…” Ugh.
Then I had an epiphany… why did I think I needed to paint flat pictures instead of creating texture, which is what I really love to do? I thought of the aboriginal artists who use the dots of color in repetition close together creating a subtle but mesmerizing visual narrative. So I decided to go in the direction of texture again but through the use of paint. I masked off small triangles at the top of the bottle and sprayed it with grey matte primer. I then removed the masking tape to reveal the pretty transparent green glass. I began by drawing small circles at the top of the bottle. I wasn’t sure what I wanted the whole scene to be yet, so I started painting. I painted solid color first and then when it was dry began painting dots on top of the solid color. The dots were made with the back of a small paint brush and sit just a millimeter apart. I could only make 3 dots before re-dipping the brush to ensure even circles of color. I find the more I work on something, the more ideas start to flow. After I began the top I knew what I wanted to do with the rest of the design. I drew giant abstract flowers at the bottom, mountains, clouds and a large rising sun. I painted them all flat colors, and then added dots in other colors on top of the first flat layer of paint. I was very excited with the finished bottle and the event was a great success.
In 2009, I created a bottle in the same style but the subject matter changed. My bottle turned from day to night and the mood therefore changed as it turned. One side had a full moon and turned to a sunny, cozy scene on the other side. I relish thinking three dimensionally and having a bottle to paint allows me to think about how a viewer will experience each side of the finished piece.
This year, I couldn’t wait to get started on my bottle and finished it in record time. I used the same technique of the dots, but again the design changed. I wanted to reflect the economy and express that visually with an optimistic slant. I painted huge pink flowers on one side. As the bottle turns the flowers are grayed and underneath some of the dotted petals I hid pieces from old newspapers about the economy. Now that I have my technique down I can concentrate on the theme of future bottles and can’t wait for next year.