Cullowhee Mountain Arts workshops are filling up fast!

Alice Ballard – Finding Your Form Through Nature

 

If you are interested in taking my workshop, "Finding Your Form Through Nature", June 28th through July 3rd, go to the above link to check my workshop description.  There are still a few spots left!

 

Call or email me if you have questions. (864)414-0478 or aliceballard64@yahoo.com

Look for this image of my work on the list of instructors if you are interested in checking out my workshop.  Alice Ballard – Finding Your Form Through Nature Alice Ballard - Finding Your Form Through Nature. June 28 — July 3, 2015. Medium: Ceramics Level: Open - All LevelsTuition: $525 | Lab Fee: $45.    

Look for this image of my work on the list of instructors if you are interested in checking out my workshop. 

Alice Ballard – Finding Your Form Through Nature

Alice Ballard - Finding Your Form Through Nature. June 28 — July 3, 2015. Medium: Ceramics Level: Open - All LevelsTuition: $525 | Lab Fee: $45.

 

 

Day five, the last day to finish it up, wrap it up and pack it up....

A final wistful look at the studio and some of the smaller meditation pieces I started as demos for the two mini workshops...

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last but not least - ideas for small projects for visiting grandchildren and a mini example of how I make my hosta leaf plates

last but not least - ideas for small projects for visiting grandchildren and a mini example of how I make my hosta leaf plates

One last look at the moon over Spring Island from my Cottage before calling it a night...

One last look at the moon over Spring Island from my Cottage before calling it a night...

Day four on Spring Island

This day was all about bringing the essence of the natural environment around the Barn into the studio to create an interior space that would reflect something of my experience as an artist touched by the exquisite beauty of Spring Island's natural environment.  In this case it was the long needled pine, the cones, the bark, branches and long straight needles that had touched me the most.  

The magnolia leaves were a thoughtful gift from a special visitor.  When I added them to my still-life of branches, pines, bark, etc, they became a connection to my home in Greenville, SC where the magnificent magnolia trees have become my symbol for place. 

 

In this large charcoal drawing you can see the influence of those long needled pine branches I collected from the tree just outside the studio.      

In this large charcoal drawing you can see the influence of those long needled pine branches I collected from the tree just outside the studio.  

 

 

The finished drawing of the pine branches, along with the other drawing became the bookends for a still-life of my red earthenware crepe myrtle containers with branches, leaves, pine cones and a palmetto fan. This arrangement along the back wall became the central element of the installation I was trying to create inside the Barn studio where I was working.

The finished drawing of the pine branches, along with the other drawing became the bookends for a still-life of my red earthenware crepe myrtle containers with branches, leaves, pine cones and a palmetto fan. This arrangement along the back wall became the central element of the installation I was trying to create inside the Barn studio where I was working.

Sometimes I love the details best of all!

The last addition to the still-life was the Palmetto leaf.

This was the final touch to my studio installation.  On the two low tables, one for drawing and one set up for work in clay, I laid out the work I had done in clay, some of which was started in the two fun mini workshops I did the first two days.  I especially wanted folks coming to my powerpoint, "My life as a Spiral" on  Thursday night to see something of my process as an artist.  Although speaking always makes my heart flutter a bit, a warm and receptive audience calmed me immediately and I settled into my talk, knowing I was among friends, some old and some new.. I started weaving my life story by sharing how childhood experiences before the age of 6 had a profound effect on my life and on my art.  The Spring Island audience deserve special thanks and recognition for making me feel so at home and appreciated.  An intimate and low-country gourmet dinner party at the club afterwards was the icing on the cake!  This was one of a multitude of acts of kindness and hospitality that any future visiting artist can expect...

This was the final touch to my studio installation.  On the two low tables, one for drawing and one set up for work in clay, I laid out the work I had done in clay, some of which was started in the two fun mini workshops I did the first two days.  I especially wanted folks coming to my powerpoint, "My life as a Spiral" on  Thursday night to see something of my process as an artist. 

Although speaking always makes my heart flutter a bit, a warm and receptive audience calmed me immediately and I settled into my talk, knowing I was among friends, some old and some new.. I started weaving my life story by sharing how childhood experiences before the age of 6 had a profound effect on my life and on my art.  The Spring Island audience deserve special thanks and recognition for making me feel so at home and appreciated.  An intimate and low-country gourmet dinner party at the club afterwards was the icing on the cake!  This was one of a multitude of acts of kindness and hospitality that any future visiting artist can expect...

Installation of an artist at work in studio 1, the Barn, Spring Island, SC

Installation of an artist at work in studio 1, the Barn, Spring Island, SC

Day two on Spring Island...

Just outside the Barn studio stand these gorgeous, straight and regal long needled pine trees. They remind me of my South Carolina roots.  As a child, whenever I returned to Florence, SC to see grandparents and cousins, the sight of sandy soil and pine trees, reminded me we were getting close to my birth place and some of my earliest memories. Nostalgia had already set in on my drive down from Greenville, SC the day before.

Of course I could not resist collecting a branch or two to take into the studio as a constant reminder of their beauty, grace, color, texture and fragrance...even the elegant line quality was exciting!

Of course I could not resist collecting a branch or two to take into the studio as a constant reminder of their beauty, grace, color, texture and fragrance...even the elegant line quality was exciting!

As always, I start with clay sketches or meditation bowls, often with natural materials pressed into the surface.  This was just the beginning....

As always, I start with clay sketches or meditation bowls, often with natural materials pressed into the surface.  This was just the beginning....

A view at day's end of the watery and textural environment that encompasses Spring Island.

A view at day's end of the watery and textural environment that encompasses Spring Island.

Home for the evening and a view of the moon and a lone stare were made special by the darkness of the island. Only a few lights glitter in the distance across the horse pastures near my cottage and the barn.

Home for the evening and a view of the moon and a lone stare were made special by the darkness of the island. Only a few lights glitter in the distance across the horse pastures near my cottage and the barn.

I have just spiraled home from PARADISE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And I have a wondrous tale to tell! It is a story about the abundant Spring Island hospitality and generosity.  Add to that, Spring Island's exquisite natural environment, became an incubator that offered me an opportunity for new growth.  It doesn't get any better than that!

Each day this week I will post images that will share the special and memorable journey I had into a paradise like no other!  Images from day one will follow. 

Avenue of Oaks leading down to the historic ruins of a once thriving plantation, perhaps the symbol of the merging of past and present on Spring Island.

Avenue of Oaks leading down to the historic ruins of a once thriving plantation, perhaps the symbol of the merging of past and present on Spring Island.

Set up for a show of my work in the studio next to studio where I was working, in "the Barn".

Set up for a show of my work in the studio next to studio where I was working, in "the Barn".

The first day, my goal was to create a comfortable environment within the space of a fabulous and well lit studio in the Barn.  Setting up a few things to create a certain familiarity was the first step.  I set up a 2 tall containers I had brought and almost immediately added something new, a brilliant green apple.  It was a special gift from a Spring Islander wishing me the best for the week, one of the first of many acts friendship, hospitality and support. Then I did a large charcoal drawing, quickly and furiously, to loosen up.  This would after all, become my "nest" for the rest of the week...  Look for more tomorrow!

The first day, my goal was to create a comfortable environment within the space of a fabulous and well lit studio in the Barn.  Setting up a few things to create a certain familiarity was the first step.  I set up a 2 tall containers I had brought and almost immediately added something new, a brilliant green apple.  It was a special gift from a Spring Islander wishing me the best for the week, one of the first of many acts friendship, hospitality and support. Then I did a large charcoal drawing, quickly and furiously, to loosen up.  This would after all, become my "nest" for the rest of the week... 

Look for more tomorrow!

Ta da!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

These collaborative wind chimes were created by the CCES 4th grade students, Marilyn Mullinax and ME, for the CCES Lower School Permanent Collection!  In addition the 4th grade students will be assembling the parts and pieces for their own personal bell/chimes. 

Thank you to the 4th grade students and especially to Marilyn Mullinax, their gifted art teacher, for a fantastic and memorable experience!  Together we made harmony out of chaos!!!! 

Now, it's back to my studio, a quieter but equally exciting place to be.

This is the last of 5 wind chimes. It will be completed with the addition of thumb prints in clay by each 4th grader. These clay thumb prints will hang as the centerpiece of the biggest and most inclusive of the wind chimes. Over 80 of us will have a part or piece that will make for the special harmony of the sound of this wind chime. I can't wait to hear it!!!!!!!!

This is the last of 5 wind chimes. It will be completed with the addition of thumb prints in clay by each 4th grader. These clay thumb prints will hang as the centerpiece of the biggest and most inclusive of the wind chimes. Over 80 of us will have a part or piece that will make for the special harmony of the sound of this wind chime. I can't wait to hear it!!!!!!!!

A finished wind chime

A finished wind chime

Wind chimes, a creative collaboration with the Mrs. Mullinax and her 4th grade "young artists" at CCES- A sneak peak...

Just look at these beautiful young hands and imagine the "creative potential" of our youth, especially when they can work together as a team!

4th grade teamwork 

4th grade teamwork 

4th grade wind chime project -  Take our 4th grade young artists at Christ Church Episcopal School and add creativity plus skillful hands, glass beads and an assortment of student made parts and pieces and guess what you have???? Check in tomorrow to see the results!....

4th grade wind chime project -  Take our 4th grade young artists at Christ Church Episcopal School and add creativity plus skillful hands, glass beads and an assortment of student made parts and pieces and guess what you have???? Check in tomorrow to see the results!....