See more detailed photos below:
These very "metallic" looking cups are the size of normal coffee cups. These are ceramic cups glazed with a metallic color to compliment the masculine "diamond plate" design. Notice, two of them have the rounded handles while the one on the right has the square handle. Each handle has the same "diamond plate" design as on the cup. You can order cups with either handles at $30/cup. Email me at "firstname.lastname@example.org
See more detailed photos below:
I had the joy of selling several of these
quite "masculine" metallic ceramic mugs.
If you would like some, let me know!
I believe that for me, the purpose of this mug is to lessen just a bit the masculinity pressure there is on the male these days. I can see that the media generally speaking is, more often than not, presenting the male as a physical specimen and with that also suggesting he should be a little violent. A lot of guys succumb to that mold and try to be "manly" in what then often turns out to be socially offensive in various ways.
Let me say this, carry this cup around with you and that will be enough! You won't need a to do 40 push-ups to prove your point...! Carry this in your hand and you will impress both genders in your life about who and what you are as a man! Even just having it on a display shelf in your room will change the atmosphere!
If you need a cup like this...call or email me and I'd love to help you with your masculine reputation!!!
One of the challenges I had was making the bolts and nuts look like the real thing. So you can see in this illustrative gallery what I invented to make nuts look like the real thing.
I decided I could use a bolt with a screw as my template and sure enough it worked. The first picture is me impressing the bolt end into a strip of "leather hard" clay. After that you can see how I cut it out. Then after I'd attached it to the clay cup I used the screw end, making sure it wasn't flush with the end of the bolt, and pressed it against the nut now on the mug. The last image is the result. It even includes the bolt part in the center sticking out a bit. I was ecstatic!
“You seek the heights of manhood
when you seek the depths of God.”
Edwin Louis Cole
Sorry about the sad pun! But one thing I'm into right now is mugs!
As you can see, this one is quite different. Using clay I made it look as if it's made of metal and held together with nuts and bolts.
What you see here is dried clay which is going into the kiln for it's first firing. Then, I'll be putting a "stainless steel" looking shinny glaze on it, another firing and wallah, a metal looking mug!
Problem is right now we cannot even go out for coffee anymore! These days all of this has been disrupted big time. Going out for coffee is all about relating with friends over a cup of coffee. It's tough to have coffee with a someone and remain the required 6 ft. apart! It would have to be one of those huge dining tables with one of us at each end! What fun is that? And then you would still have to use your I-phones to communicate without everyone listening in on your conversation!
I'm here to encourage you all, this too shall pass and one day we will coffee once again and really appreciate our new freedom and our friendships!
Take care everyone and be safe!
"Coffee is the common man’s gold, and like gold,
it brings to every person the feeling of luxury and nobility."
-Sheik-Abd-al-Kadir, In Praise of Coffee (1587)
We have a trip coming up, leaving Sept. 17, back on 26th., going across the world, through Hong Cong airport connection! Pray that will work out! We've been invited to a school to teach on forgiveness. We are both presenting to kids, teachers and parents. Wilma's doing the talks and I'm teaching forgiveness through art.
So life is a bit crazy, getting everything ready, the packing, the lessons, the weather out there and more. Like will they understand us Canadians speaking English and understand what we are trying to say!
May the Lord translate as we speak!
Gutting this room begins the process
of moving from shadow to light.
Why would you gut a bedroom when you actually need a garage renovated into a studio/classroom?
It's the tree's fault! That huge linden tree in our backyard did it! Guess what, it's not there anymore! You cannot let trees push you around in the cramped confines of city lots. I heard that the roots go beyond the tree's upper canopy of growth, something like one and a half times further. Well, our tree was growing taller than our house and and spreading over our roof. When I heard it scratching I'd get a ladder and trim those branches back, not realizing the implications this was going to have for my basement wall and my pocketbook.
So, that's why this room got gutted, so the fine wonderful "crack in the wall fix-it guys" have access to the whole sad injured wall.
We did gut that bedroom and a hallway for a further reason. Since the garage is going to morph into an art studio/classroom by September of this year we also took out the ceiling so that the electrician could run the wires from the electrical box on one side of the house to the other along the joists to the garage much more easily. He's charging by the hour so this saves a lot of time and we get to update this basement area.
Don't get me wrong we love trees and did love this linden tree. Our backyard was always cool regardless of outdoor temperatures. Our whole backyard featured a variety of amazing shade plants. We enjoyed the huge amount of large leaves that descended every fall covering everything and bringing fun and excitement as we and our grand kids played in the huge piles of leaves.
We are now looking forward to a new era. A yard full of sunlight and an array of many new flowering sun plants in our future, corresponding with the changes in my art process, having my studio and art classroom in close proximity for the first time, right next to my own home.
"All the variety, all the charm,
all the beauty of life
is made up
of light and shadow."
Some of the work of one of my students in my "Clay Class for Adults." It was our last day and these were glazed and are ready to be fired. Loved the teapot with it's vine-like style of handle and base. Note the cups with the same. Great work!
Hi Everyone...I know, it's Sunday and tomorrow, Monday night it is happening! My face, hands, artwork, words, my very essence, my style, my who knows what else, will be displayed on a huge screen for the world to see!
I love teaching my students how to draw a hole in the road, suggesting to them they could draw this with watercolors on the floor of their house, like in the bathroom so when someone opens the door they will screech thinking their falling into a real hole. Well now I'd love to draw that hole in my bathroom and be the one opening the door, except I'd jump in for real and disappear for a week or so.
Meanwhile, I have to say thank you to many of you who have come out to see our "Theotrinsic" art shows and supported my family and me in our art journey. I hope and pray that this documentary which Andrew Wall put so much expertise and work into will encourage all who have had to go through tragedy of one kind or another. Doing art can be a great healer as it was for me. My attempt to be distracted turned out to be a huge factor in my working through grief, loss and trauma. Art helped me create an image based narrative that re-visited, released and removed blockages so these painful thoughts and memories could be freed up, released to process and move forward in a healing process.
So instead of using words I was using images and the process of creating them to do the work of healing for my pain.
We all experience trauma of one kind or another. We all react differently often traumatized, fragmented and speechless, and more. And we don't want to or don't know how to express it. Art, any kind of artistic venture will help with that. Dance, music, drama, crocheting, needle work, sketching, painting etc. will do this for anyone.
I pray this documentary will give us all encouragement to move towards healing and a full life despite whatever trauma, large or small has come our way.
“There is no greater agony
than bearing an untold story inside you.”
― Maya Angelou
"Celestial City" set painting for Pilgrims Progress
by Cliff Derksen
I am busy, overloaded but excited and painting the picture above...white on black. Being as dramatic as I can. It's for a drama so why not be dramatic?
Our school St. Aidan's is putting on a drama, "Pilgrims Progress", at our closing program, on the evening of June 7. at 630 PM.
I've been asked to paint the backdrop for various scenes including the "Celestial City" you see above. I'm loving doing it and when my wifee saw it told me to stop now....I wanted to continue details...."Noooo it's beautiful, stop now, no more!"
Now she was being dramatic, so I stopped!
Next is "Vanity Fair" now that should be fun!!!!
I'm teaching my clay class for adults, and we are building up to the main course of creativity....the making of a teapot! We began on the first day with pinch pots which developed into something quite unique for each student, for some it morphed into a vase, another a turtle, there was a dish for laundry room soap and so on. They all began with no idea where it would end up. As the clay took it's form in their hands so to did the ideas of what this might actually turn out to be! It was all very exciting!
We just finished our seventh of the ten classes, the pinch pot is now history, also the mug, and now we are into teapots big time.
So as any teacher would I taught them the key elements needed to make the pot work. Also how what they'd made till now actually prepared them for this next challenge...I mean project. You don't want to frighten anyone into a frozen mode on the cusp of beginning this wonderful new experience....the tea pot!
So I also made one, following all the rules I'd taught the class! Well, again maybe not. Somewhere in the process I remembered seeing these log, or tree trunk textured kind of teapots and decided I'd try one. Well, in doing this I still followed most everything according to the rules I'd just expounded on but then remembered that this was now becoming a tree trunk, something natural in nature, it could not be made like I'd just said it should! I could not make something of nature appear all lined up in rows like us humans like to do!
For example trees don't sprout and grow arranging themselves in straight lines, like we do when we plant trees. We like our hedges, and our shelter belts to include trees growing in lines and rows! But with a tree trunk kind of teapot I realized I was going against the grain with that idea. (Pun indented!)
So here's the result! The bark texture would not work with straight lines in a row. That would make it another "mechanical" kind of teapot and not "organic" at all. Secondly, there were the knots, they too would have to be just spread around haphazardly to make this work. And then, the handle. Take a peek at the picture below, I had just taught my class that the handle had to be in line with the spout for it to work. Well, now that you see the picture you can appreciate how a very straight handle would just not do. So I had the joy of rebelling against the teachers rants on several levels, including the final flourish of putting a twist and/or bend into the handle. Don't worry, I was hoping my teacher would be ok with all these adjustments.
So you see, sometimes we just have to ignore the rules and go with our gut, create something new, original, being ourselves and trusting our own instincts. That is the challenge, beauty, adventure and true joy of creativity.
"I believe in rules. Sure I do. If there weren't any rules,
how could you break them? "
Since 2016 when Andrew came into my life with a camera, life had been a bit strange! Now that's saying something because for the last 33 years things have been pretty strange, I have to say not much was normal, everything was strange.
But to have a camera show up here and there was often a surprise and interesting. It was a bit disconcerting for my art studio companions and my art class, but they just got used to it, I think. They were all very kind anyways and hid their discomfort very well, Thanks guys. Anyways, on evening of June 18 there will be a premier showing of a documentary on me and my work called "Suspended, the "Art" of Forgiveness" showing at Jubilee Place (MBCI) here in Winnipeg.
Foxy David by Cliff Derksen
Ceramic Clay, Patina Finish
It was of course Andrew Wall of Refuge 31 Films who was the culprit.
You see, other's have suggested they film us, but nothing really ever came of it, but this time it was different. Andrew just kept on showing up and actually became more than an acquaintance but a friend, in spite of his ever present camera. We would have great talks while he filmed. The only time it got a little tense would be when I'd accidentally hit the lens, not realizing how close he was filming my artistic attempts.
There are two things it seems, that go on in the act of filming an artist at work. First, it's the artist's problem, because when artists work they forget about everything around them. They get totally engrossed. Secondly, it's about the filmmaker, the conversation seems so natural. There is empathy there, there is that deceptive admiration, and there is that calming tone of voice which deceives the artist who in his "right minded state" is helpless, confessing things and saying things you might say to a best friend. Forgetting of course it's all recorded both visually and verbally and will one day end up on a screen the size of a wall!
it's only when he leaves with that satisfied smile you realize somethings kind of wrong here. You try hard to remember what you all said and realize you've been had. That he totally took advantage of you as you worked on your stuff, you having totally mentally parked yourself in your right brain world that only sees and feels shape, texture, and color. If it hears anything it only soothing voices with no filters for conversational content! Ouch!
So Andrew, you did it, congratulations and thank you, I think! It all seemed quite fun at the time, but now to see it on the "big screen" gives me pause. I pray it will be an encouragement to all.
Quote from Refuge 31 Films.com website:
"For Cliff in particular, each period of this long painful journey – from tragedy and death to trial and conviction to now re-trial – also marks his development as an artist. Themes of anger and loss to suspicion and justice have allowed Cliff different ways to express himself and find an inner strength to find forgiveness. Now, years after the trial and with a trail of fascinating and wonderful works, Cliff has moved into not just creating but also teaching the joy of art."
The Grand-kids and I colored Easter eggs on Easter Sunday afternoon, here's my egg "at rest" waiting
for the colors to take hold!
I was thinking about my Easter egg in the middle of it's process of color development!
This egg like me (us) has been rolled around in the colorful events of life. Like the colors now affecting this egg, events in life affect us in many ways. The Reds could be heart pounding, adrenaline pumping type of events. Dangerous things where we've just avoided an accident or worse. The yellows could be really great times, the blues could be....well blues! Kind of sad things. Sometimes really sad and tragic. Now blue is a strong color so to are tragic events, they can tarnish us for the rest of our lives.
But, we usually learn rather slowly, at least I do. It takes time to process everything and like the egg lying in this mass of colors we have to take time to process. Also, the waiting is hard because we really get curious and want to see what the result will be. This is very hard, my grand kids were going "Can I get it out of there now, I want to see it, can I, can I?"
You see it takes time for every color to have a chance and mingle in just the right way for us. It's how we use our time to deal with all that affects us. It's really all the life decisions we make that will make us who we really are. Meanwhile, we get impatient, take ourselves out, and then get disgusted with what we see, often carelessly throwing ourselves back into life hoping some soul stiring kind of miracle will happen to make things right again.
This past while I was waiting and waiting and the colors were not working for me and I was beginning to get frustrated. Nothing was solidifying...I was going to have to make some decisions between two or three good things regarding my present teaching commitments and ideas for my future teaching career. Whatever I decided I knew would probably offend one or two parties. Well, would you believe other circumstances came along that totally made the decisions for me! Actually felt like someone was reading my mind!) Wow! What a relief!
I love to teach art. With this development I'm free now to proceed with some new creative plans by which to develop my teaching future in radically new ways. The egg itself being a symbol of new life and beginnings makes "Hatching" something new the operative word!
I'm so happy I waited, the colors set just right and my Easter egg turned out wonderfully!
"I see retirement as just another of these reinventions,
another chance to do new things
and be a new version of myself."
Hi, my name is Cliff, welcome to my website where I share my life as an art teacher, ceramic artist, photographer, father, businessman, leader and disciple. Basically I'm just trying to keep up with an exciting creative life. Thank you for coming along for the ride. You know, that your reading my blogs will make me a better artist so thank you in advance.