Meet The Maker: Sherry Insley

My name is Sherry Insley of Sherry Insley Designs out of Baltimore, MD. I am an artist, metalsmith, teacher, and maker of things and people. I currently work mainly in jewelry, but do also dabble in small sculptural objects, wall pieces, and photography. I come from a background in photography, and while working on my MFA thesis, I taught myself how to weld to make frames for my photography work. My curiosity about metalsmithing was sparked and I dove into metal work.

image2

My current work is called the “Crescent Series” and is comprised of welded steel, sterling silver, brass and powder coating. I was influenced by Japanese textile design, the repetitive waves and cloud shapes, and the way positive and negative space is defined. I am also inspired by modern architecture and graphics, as well as more minimalist bold use of line and space. Materially speaking, my interests are in the industrial look and feel of steel, its hardness and durability, vs. the rounded shapes I am forming it into. The steel’s inherent “masculine” qualities contrasting with my design’s softer “feminine” curves. Steel is most commonly associated with building, strengthening, and manufacturing- here through traditionally industrial processes, I am transforming it into objects for adornment.

image3

My process begins with mild carbon steel in wire, sheet and rod. I cut it and form with hammers and stakes into the shapes that I want. Then I weld with a very tiny, very hot oxyacetylene torch. I wear the dark glasses because the flame is so bright it can damage your eyes. Next I grind all the welded joins for a smooth appearance. Filing and sanding is next, then it’s off to the powder coating booth! Powder coating is another industrial process I enjoy, it is generally used in the automotive industry. It protects the metal from oxidizing and rust, and the color options are fantastic. How powder coating works is an electrical current is run through the metal to be coated, then you spray the pigment with a powder coating gun. Lastly the piece is cured by heating in an oven at 400 degrees. Powder coating is very durable and provides a lovely smooth finish. My current color pallet, is Ruby Red, Chrome, and Satin Black.

image1

I work mostly out of my home studio in Baltimore, where I live with my very patient husband, super creative 7 year old son, 2 cranky elderly cats, and 1 rescue Boxer in a wheelchair. I do my welding and powder coating at The Baltimore Jewelry Center, where I rent studio time and space, and also take classes. It is a wonderful community of artists and makers, and I wouldn’t be where I am today without it.

image

I am looking forward to showing at Art Star Craft Bazaar! Please stop by and say hi!

Posted in artist spotlight, ascb | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Meet The Maker: Lauren Herzak-Bauman of Lauren H-B Studio

Hi! My name is Lauren and I make functional ceramics under the name Lauren H-B Studio. I grew up in a suburb near Cleveland, Ohio and always loved when my dad took me to the city. I loved visiting the Old Arcade with its beautiful wrought iron architecture and glass ceiling and window-shopping at all the small businesses that called this place home. My love of Cleveland and its architecture grew to include the century-old warehouses and factories that are found all over the city. My studio is housed in one of these old buildings, one that used to make electric cars at the turn of the century.

1

Clay has always been my go-to material. My mother started a community art center when I was young and I learned to throw on a pottery wheel before I could drive. But I did not always make pots. While I started my college education making functional work, I went to graduate school in Minnesota to study ceramic sculpture (you can see that work at laurenhb.com). I moved back to Cleveland from Minneapolis about four years ago and started making pots to support myself until I could find a full-time job. I discovered a lot of support for my work in my hometown and now I am happily self-employed as an artist, working on both my sculpture and my functional work.

2

Drawing on my background in sculpture, my forms take inspiration from abstract art and architecture. For surface inspiration, I look to natural phenomenon, such as moving water, rock striations, and star clusters. I love making things that can be both beautiful and useful. I design pots that have multiple uses. My serving bowls serve as tabletop artwork when not in use, but are also food safe and great for passing food around the table.

3

Making ceramics is a multi-step process. I work with plaster molds made from original designs to create my forms. This allows me to make geometric shapes and to repeat the same shape with consistency. I pour a porcelain casting slip inside each plaster mold. The plaster absorbs the water from the slip and leaves a skin. After some time passes, I pour out the remaining slip. The remaining ‘skin’ becomes the ceramic object.

4

After each piece comes out of the mold, I refine the surface and add any necessary slip details prior to the first firing. After the first firing, I spend a lot of time working on the surfaces of each pot. I really love the glaze process! I enjoy layering colors and finding new ways to add surface to my pieces. After I finish glazing, the pieces go back in the electric kiln for a glaze firing. Some pieces will go in the kiln one more time, this time for a luster firing, which allows me to add a low temperature metallic surface to the pieces.

5

This is my first year traveling to Philly for Art Star Craft Bazaar and I couldn’t be more excited to share my work with a new audience. I’m bringing lots of new pieces and a new color palette to the show. Please stop by Booth #55! And thank you for shopping small business and handmade!

Posted in artist spotlight, ascb | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Meet The Maker: Aftyn Shah of Rise + Wander

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Hello! I’m Aftyn, the self-taught printmaker behind Rise + Wander. I started R+W less than a year ago, and I’m feeling pretty lucky to be part of Art Star’s Craft Bazaar for my first in-person event. I work out of my home studio in Narberth, PA, on a desk covered in succulents and little treasures my son brings home from our walks.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Blockprinting is such a simple, straightforward process, even if it can take weeks to execute. I sketch the bare bones of an image directly onto a block, then slowly carve away pieces to reveal the more detailed picture, and finally ink and print for the big reveal. Every print I pull is a complete original that has gone through the whole process with me. It might look almost identical to its predecessors at first, but each one has its own unique characteristics borne from the hand-pressing process. Printmaking truly makes owning original artwork accessible for everyone, which I think is a really cool aspect.

image1

The meaning behind Rise + Wander, as is often the case with creative businesses, is a personal one. After a bad car accident a few years ago, I developed quite a bit of anxiety, and doctors encouraged me to get outside. Returning to nature, to hiking and having little aimless adventures with my son, soothes my mind. I love the deliberate action implied by Rise combined with and contrasting against the more leisurely directionless Wander. I think it’s important to be intentional about having unstructured time outside.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

My first attempt at blockprinting started as art therapy. When I decided to try it out, inspired by my exposure to beautiful Indian textiles through my husband’s family, I knew next to nothing about it. I picked up cheap tools and some small linoleum blocks from a local craft store. Using those small blocks, I mostly created feathers and leaves, but as the size of the blocks grew my subject matter began to consistently represent my “Happy Place” outside.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

When I’m outside, whether it’s hiking at a National Park or walking to the nearby coffee shop, I’m often silently translating the natural elements around me into lines and gouges. I decide how I would interpret specific textures or patterns onto a block. It’s become a bit of a game, a mental exercise.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

When someone views my work or purchases a print, I hope they feel inspired to get outside and also perhaps like they’re bringing a bit of the great outdoors into their homes.

Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

Like I said, the Art Star Craft Bazaar will be my first in-person event, and I’m excited for the experience. We’re still new to the area, and I can’t wait to meet lots of new people and share my work. Looking forward to seeing you all there!

—————————————————————————————————————–

Aftyn Shah is the outdoorsy printmaker living near Philadelphia with her husband and son. She’s usually daydreaming about mountain lakes, wild pines, and kayaking, which inspires many of her prints. Follow Rise + Wander on Instagram (@riseandwander) or check out her site riseandwander.com.

Posted in artist spotlight, ascb | Leave a comment

Meet The Maker: David Salonen of EDMM studio

as-file-prep-copy
I’ve always liked to understand, create, and build things. So, when I found industrial design it seemed like the perfect fit. My training and experience ingrained in me that good process delivers good outcomes. My curiosity and love of making things motivates me to learn new skills and develop them. I’m pretty sure the combination of these two qualities is how I got here.

as-jack-green-oak-copy as-junior-junior-copy
There is a part of EDMM studio that’s kind of always been there—doing things the right way, not adding the unnecessary, keeping it simple–but I put a name on it, and started to focus my efforts in late 2014. After leaving a job that was a bad fit and not wanting to go back to welding in a shipyard, I decided to start my own business. The time was as right as it was going to get. I had a few months before my son would be born and my wife was into it—so I got to work. I incorporated, designed and built some furniture, took a bunch of pictures, and put it all on the internet.

as-dauphin-coffee-copy
Where to build things when you live in a city can be a real challenge. Not owning many tools and not having a garage, I started working out of a nearby cooperative shop that had both woodworking and metalworking tools–mostly on evenings and weekends. Every time I got an order it was a bit of a crunch, but the best kind of crunch. I’m thrilled (and lucky) to have my own shop now, and to be able to work the way I want.

as-sketchpile-copy as-cad-copy
I’m not into “extra” anything. I love the simple, the sturdy, and the dialed-in single-purpose, I think this shows in my work. I start with form and intended use, and then I start sketching. A lot of the time those sketches go nowhere, but when I’m onto something I’ll work it out in CAD. 3D modeling allows me to experiment with proportions, helps me iron out technical details, and lets me preview finishes and materials.

as-planing-copy as-grinding-copy
With a finalized design, I move on to fabrication and another layer of problem solving. Often I’m making something completely new and will have to figure out how I’m going to build it. I might be making a tool, a jig or fixture, finding a better way to clamp something, or just selecting the best material for the application—these steps are all part of the process. Then with a drawing and a plan, I can settle into the less brainy and more physical parts of the work—really focusing on my weld puddle, grinding that radius exactly like the last one, or sanding that end-grain so so smooth.

as-junior-grey-blackwood-copy as-jill-red-walnut-copy

EDMM gives me the opportunity to do all these things, while addressing familiar household design problems, making beautiful and durable artifacts, and hopefully giving my clients a richer and more positive and personal experience with both me, and with my product than they can get with mass produced goods.
————————————————————————————————————–
EDMM is a first time Art Star Craft Bazaar Vendor and will be showing at our November 19th and 20th show at the Simeone Musuem! Find his work at http://www.edmm.com/ and https://www.instagram.com/edmmstudio/

Posted in artist spotlight, ascb | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Meet The Maker: Chris Elsasser of Munstre

1_munstre_artist-copy2_munstre-copy

Munstre (mun-stir) began as a happy accident back in 2008, I used to make buttons for bands and events in the Boston area, and I’d do all of the layout and printing before finally running each piece through the button press. If the order was large enough I’d tape a few sheets of paper together in order to save time during the circle cutting stage – but in order to be sure everything lined up correctly on each sheet I’d hold the group of them up to a bright light. I’d hold them up, think “goddamnit the registration’s off again but hmm that’s a nice looking thing”, fix the registration and move on. It’s kind of a minimal moment, but one day after wrapping up an order I decided to print out one of my own simple designs onto some aged paper, I didn’t have a frame or anything built yet, but against the light that particular artwork came to life in a way that just didn’t quite work sitting on a computer screen… and I immediately felt like this thing had some potential. I at least wanted one for myself.

3_munstre-copy

The problem then was I had very, very little experience with woodworking and no knowledge whatsoever of electrical wiring (although I DID mount a battery powered 3v fan motor to a slab of wood when I was in 3rd grade) so I had to kind of find my way. Fortunately my dad had all of the equipment I’d need to start, and he helped me make the first frame for these lightboxes while also showing me how to not explode myself or his garage. Every step since then has basically just been learning, practicing, refining, testing new ideas, refining those etc…

4_munstre-copy

The style for Munstre has always reflected what I’m into in my own life, which tends to be antique or historic items with an ‘oddities’ edge to them, particularly medical ephemera. For years I’ve collected old photographs, books, clocks, 8mm films – all sorts of items that inform my decisions when it comes to design. Though each image is a product of a massive amount of photoshopping & digital painting, I try to impart enough real textures and layers around the focal point, and on some level keep the images grounded, so the viewer feels some connection to the piece while maintaining their curiosity.

5_munstre-copy 6_munstre-copy

Over time these lightboxes showed up in stores, articles, a couple movies & tv shows. The support was very exciting, but it also became extremely exhausting. I had made so many little adjustments to my own construction & ideas along the way, I knew the process was probably far from efficient, and the idea of getting someone to help felt at once very needed & very daunting.

Eventually I was offered a FT Design job which of course ate up the majority of my production time, and I kept Munstre around as a minimal side project, thinking I’d return to it in a more dedicated way at another time. 6 months became a year, which became two. Then life made some adjustments for me, because somewhere in there I ended up meeting my now fiancee while she was in Medical school at Brown, and upon graduating she matched in Philadelphia for residency, so we picked up and moved down here without really knowing anyone. In the process of the move I decided to deactivate Munstre. Philly was a big reset button for me, and being the partner of a resident Physician I found myself with lots, and lots, and lots of alone time. I began using this time to refocus some creative energy, building a new workspace, re-discovering a love for music, and very slowly building a small recording studio as my interests grew. I started a music project called “Colurer”, and while I’m still writing and recording a full album (out in 2017) this process really helped wake me back up creatively. I’ve put out a handful of tracks, and am currently finalizing discussions to license some music for a movie coming out next year.

7_munstre-copy

This summer I was hit with a drive to reinvigorate Munstre. Working with some new materials, like textured stained glass, more interesting frames, and some great options with LED’s I am probably more excited than I was at its first inception. This time around I am also more inspired by the things I’ve come to appreciate through my fiancee: cooking, gardening, a connection to nature, and a generally more positive outlook on life. If you’d told me in 2008 I would one day find inspiration from green beans I would’ve questioned the course my life was taking.

8_munstre-copy 9_munstre-copy 10_munstre-copy 11_munstre-copy

On a whim I sent a vendor application into Art Star and used that as the catalyst to get the project back in full operation. I’ve since carved out space in our apartment, working partly on our deck, and the other in the back half of my studio. In here I’m designing, assembling the boxes, printing films from modified wide-format printers, painting, wiring, and photographing everything in a much more streamlined way than I’d ever done previously.

The following 6 photos by Kristine Eng http://kristineeng.com/

12_munstre-copy 13_munstre-copy 14_munstre-copy 15_munstre-copy 16_munstre-copy 17_munstre-copy

Thank you Art Star for accepting Munstre as a vendor, while I’m very busy designing & building a new collection of images for the bazaar, I will be continuing to add new products on http://munstre.com & my recently opened Etsy account (linked through my website). Looking forward to meeting everyone!

18_munstre

www.munstre.com

Munstre is on instagram as MunstreGlow: https://www.instagram.com/munstreglow/

If you’re curious about my music project Colurer check out https://colurer.bandcamp.com/music

& instagram at Colurer https://www.instagram.com/colurer/

Posted in artist spotlight | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Events We Love: Still Divided, An Election Party and Exhibit

We are very excited about this event, which has been organized by our friend Hope Rovelto of Little Chair Printing. We hope to see you there!
flyer

Still DIVIDED: AN ELECTION PARTY AND EXHIBITION
Witness History Direct from Ringside at the Ice Box

November 8 – November 10, 2016
Opening Reception: November 8, 7-11pm
2nd Thursday Opening: November 10, 6-9pm

(PHILADELPHIA – November 8, 2016) The ICEBOX at the Crane Arts Building will host a unique exhibition and election viewing party featuring the work of local, national and international artists. The main event will occur Tuesday, November 8, during one of the most highly anticipated Presidential elections of our time. Beginning at 7:00pm, live feeds of the election results from multiple news sources will be projected alongside an exhibition including politically themed broadsides, newspapers, ceramics, live screen printing of posters and t-shirts, an interactive map of the United States, Zine making with The Soap Box Community Print Shop & Zine Library, live post painting by Yomi and more. Dock St. Brewery will be debuting their newest brew: Pathological Lager.

The goal of the exhibition organizers is to capture and critique the spectacle of political discourse in our media landscape. The division of the gallery into blue and red spaces will mimic and call attention to the passionately divided supporters of Republican candidate Donald Trump and Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton. From the organizers: “The Still Divided exhibition and election party seeks to mimic the tension of our two party system. Even in the midst of a ‘united’ rhetoric, we remain a divided country.”

With an admission price of $25, Attendees will receive their choice of a handmade ceramic cup, beer, games, art, music, and a chance to watch history being made with artists and citizens from the Philadelphia area. Anyone who shows up with an “I voted” sticker receives a $5 discount. Students with a current ID get the “Debt Relief” $10 discount.

For more information about the exhibition, or to speak with the organizers, please contact Hope Rovelto by calling (585) 615-2184 or emailing at hope.rovelto@gmail.com.
Facebook Event Invite

Posted in events | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Meet The Maker: Jen Gubicza of Zooguu

image6

Hello, I’m Jen, and my business is called Zooguu. I live outside of Boston, MA and making things has always been a part of who I am. I have a background in graphic design for the audience of kids and families. For ten years, I worked alongside a creative team designing logos, websites, product design and toy packaging. Translating an object from 2D to 3D is a challenge I enjoy very much. I started hand sewing little creatures as a hobby in the early 2000s, bought my first sewing machine in 2008, and left my full-time design job six months after that to start Zooguu.

image2
image1

Zooguu’s original product offering was handmade toys, but in the last few years the focus has moved onto home decor. The faux taxidermy pieces appeal to a wide range of ages and I sell to people decorating kids’ rooms, students outfitting their college dorms, and adults sprucing up their offices with a bit of humor. I love doing craft shows, and meeting all of the people who will be taking our work home. We spend all week sewing, cutting, painting and stuffing, so it’s always a treat to see people react to the work. We get a lot of smiles and laughter in our booth, and it’s a great feeling.

image7

The Zooguu studio is located in Nahant, MA, in a historic schoolhouse on an island just north of Boston. I have to say, working every day on a beautiful island isn’t so bad. I used to have a studio at home, but as the business grew, it became important to separate work and home life. I now have a couple of wonderful studio assistants that come and help with various stages of production work, but I still have my hands on every piece. Hiring help has allowed me to get better sleep, meet the growing demand for the work, and have time to dream up new designs.

image4 image3

I am inspired by animals, textures in nature, street fashion, pop culture, and the wonderfully supportive community of creative small business owners I have been lucky enough to know over the years. One of the best things about owning a tiny business has been meeting others that are doing the same thing and sharing knowledge and support.

————————————————————————————————————
Find Zooguu at our upcoming November 19th and 20th Art Star Craft Bazaar or at http://zooguu.com/

Posted in artist spotlight, ascb | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Meet The Maker: Hilary Hertzler

hh1
My work is colorful, textured, and sometimes very large. I am very attracted to contrast. I like to push the balance of what people expect in jewelry. I like making things that are a riot of color and texture and unexpected material combinations.

Ironically, I’ve never really been someone who wears a lot of jewelry. This is not to say that I didn’t like jewelry. I just never felt the urge to wear it on a regular basis – to find those ‘go to’ pieces that I could wear every day. The jewelry I did buy for myself tended to be one-off, handmade pieces – items that made me feel like I was expressing a part of myself that wasn’t so apparent to most people. A little wink to who I wished to be.

hh2

I get a lot of visceral reactions to my jewelry. People want to touch it, which makes me very happy. Touch is such a personal kind of connection – and I want my jewelry to feel personal. Even still, people often ruminate on my work saying, ‘It is beautiful. It would really look good on so and so. I wish I could pull it off.’ I can identify with this line of thought, but I try not to subscribe to it. I believe that, at our best, our choices in art, jewelry, clothing are expressions of who we are, aspirations of who we’d like to be.

hh3

What I hope when a customer buys a piece of mine is that it makes you feel strong and happy in your own skin. That it makes you smile and brings you a bit of joy when you wear it. That it helps you to express a part of yourself that isn’t so apparent to others or easy to express. That the rules you’ve created for yourself fall away a little when you wear it.

Creating something handmade is so personal. I like to think that I am passing along a certain energy to those who wear my jewelry. In turn, you will shape it into something for yourself, for your life. It’s a lofty goal for a small item, perhaps – but a vital one, one that affirms what makes us human: the power to recreate ourselves.

hh4

A few months ago I had a request from a customer for repair services. She was looking for someone to repair a necklace that her grandmother recently gifted her. It was a beautiful, intricately beaded piece that her grandmother bought for herself when she was a 16 year old girl in South Africa. When I received the package in the mail, I opened it up only to be hit by a warm, sweet smell. The beads were handmade, unfinished clay, rough and warm – impregnated with the perfume of her grandmother. It was a perfect, full circle moment for me and a reminder of why I feel very lucky to do what I do – to create, to connect, and pass it along.

—————————————————————————————————————-
Find Hilary’s intricately woven jewelry at our upcoming Art Star Craft Bazaar or visit her website at http://www.hilaryhertzler.com/

Posted in artist spotlight | Leave a comment

Meet The Maker: Mariko Iwata of Miks Letterpress

Hello and welcome to our Meet the Maker blog series! Twice a week we will be profiling one of our talented vendors who will be participating in our Holiday Art Star Craft Bazaar on November 19th and 20th at the Simeone Foundation Automotive Museum. This is a great way to get to know each of our artists better. Learn more about their process, get a glimpse into their studio, and meet the person behind the beautiful products they create! We will be posting these every Tuesday and Thursday until the show. Join our Facebook Event so you are notified as soon as a new post is up. Enjoy!
—————————————————————————————————————-

Hi I’m Mariko and I design and print modern and funny letterpress greeting cards as well as minimal wedding invitations.

I am all about the hand written note. Nothing says “you’re worth it” than someone who gets out a pen, thinks of something to write, licks the envelope and rifles through their drawer for stamps. Oh, yeah and then remembers to send the letter.

The sentiments printed on my cards are modern and funny as well as gushingly sentimental. I try to think of something unique that people today want to say like “i wait to watch tv shows with you” to express love. Most cards also have a blind impression that you can only see if you’re up close, like a secret message.

I love printing. I have a heidelberg windmill letterpress machine in my studio in Mt. Rainier, MD. It’s heavy and large and quite awesome when it comes to letterpress printing. I got it two years ago when I decided I’d pour my heart into designing and printing stationery and wedding invitations.

There are a number of steps involved in printing, starting from the design and concept, getting plates made, inking up your machine, setting up a design on the machine to then finally print. Here is a video that I did with Below the Park that shows the multiple steps.

Miks Letterpress – Clones from Below The Park on Vimeo.

This year I’ve been focusing more on my modern wedding invitation line. The wedding line is minimal, simple and great for the couple who wants their wedding invitation suite to be unique and different. I use gold foil, letterpress and watercolor in my work.

I’m so excited to be at the Art Star Craft Bazaar this year. I’ll have a number of new items that I don’t have yet online and will be debuting at the show. I’m super excited to be in Philly this year with other super talented makers.

—————————————————————————————————————–j
Mariko Iwata is the creative force behind Miks Letterpress +. When she is not printing and being a boss lady she is hanging out with her husband (the inspiration for many of her cards) and 8 month old son (who frequents craft fairs with her and will be at Art Star). Follow Miks Letterpress + on instagram (@mikspress) and check out her site mikspress.com

Photos by Jon Moses Photography & Rachel Lynn Photography
Video by Below the Park

Posted in artist spotlight | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Upcoming Exhibition with Julianna Swaney

AS Show postcard copy
Ever wonder who the talented artist behind all of our adorable Art Star Craft Bazaar Posters is? Well, it is none other than Portland based illustrator Julianna Swaney. We are so pleased to announce that we are hosting a solo exhibition with this beloved Art Star artist. This will be our first show with Julianna and we are bursting with excitement. This is an amazing opportunity to snag an original illustration! If you are interested in receiving a collector’s preview of the work, please email me at info@artstarphilly.com.

We will be hosting an opening reception on Saturday, September 17th from 5-7. Complimentary refreshments provided.

Posted in Exhibitions | Leave a comment