Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Maple Run Studio Tour

Well, the Maple Run Studio Tour was last weekend. I was a guest at a Chris van Zanten's glass studio. I really enjoyed seeing all the glass - lots of bird feeders hanging all over the yard! but I could have done with more visitors. People came in little bursts, as they will, but I had enough time to do 8 Killer Sudoku puzzles..... not a good thing.

Attendance at this Tour seems to be dropping each year. And everyone on it is working as hard as ever to make it a success. I can speculate about possible reasons - the looming federal and provincial budgets, the high price of gas, people more and more squeezed for time, fewer artists on the Tour this year, cold weather, craft buying fatigue, younger people not interested in 'old' crafts, competition from indie crafts..... the fact that it is getting harder and harder to advertise an event..... whoa, that's a lot of possible reasons!

I'd be interested to hear about other Tours - was your attendance up or down, sales up or down.... any ideas or suggestions for us?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Let There Be Light..... and other Studio Shenanigans

Last week one of the fluorescent lights above my work table quit. Ah, I thought, how lucky, I have a spare tube. Not so lucky..... it didn't help. So a quick trip to the local home renovations emporium for more tubes. Still didn't work.

It was a bit dim in the evening, trying to paint pots with no overhead light.

Back to the home reno emporium. This time I bought a whole new fixture.

This morning, Super Helper and I replaced the old fixture with the new one. Turned out the old one was just hung from the ceiling with butterfly hangers. I had always sort of assumed that ceiling lights were attached to some sort of actual wood inside the ceiling but apparently not. Then it turned out that the new fixture wasn't quite the same as the old one (naturally) so we would have to make new holes for the butterfly things. But one of the new holes would be too close to the hole where the power cable came through. Long story short, it took a bit of measuring and drilling and breath holding and duct tape, but finally we got the new fixture nicely up, installed the new tubes, turned the power back on, and WOW, we had LIGHT!

We did the Happy Dance!

Just so you don't think that is the only thing we've accomplished lately, we did finish some cute little teabag holders and soap dishes in the shapes of birds and fishes. Also lots of glaze tests, but I'll tell you about them in a few days once they are all done. Here are the little dishes - quite a departure from my usual work!