Process, Progress, and the Joy of Making Stuff

11개월 전


All winter a pair of Northern Cardinals flew around my yard and would sit in the tree outside my desk window. I love birds and living among Cardinals is a new experience for me. Sometimes I find myself breathlessly excited as I catch a flash of bright red as the male flies by.


Over time I realized that when I saw this brilliant red stunning male, his more camouflaged mate was often feeding close by. Nature’s design works well - this handsome fellow was very effective in diverting my attention from the female at least initially. Once I noticed her though I became very focused on searching for her each time I saw him.

I fell head over heels in love with the pair of them and particularly the understated beauty of the female. Of course when I feel this way, my natural inclination is to want to make a mosaic since making gives me the change to immerse myself in the beauty of something and get to know it better.

I haven't yet able to catch a photo of her, but used this photo from my much used "Birds of North America" book as a reference along with others on the internet:



I began by sketching and made a drawing of a female Cardinal on a red berry bush with snow since it’s what I often saw. When I create the drawing I also usually do some general thinking about the glaze colors I'll use. I made some glaze tests to help with this process. (shown in the cover photo)

Next I rolled a slab of white earthenware clay:

rolling a slab copy.jpg

I let it firm up overnight and began cutting the next day. I cut for a few hours at a time over 3 days. You can see my cutting sequence by the wet and dry areas - dark is wetter clay.


The mosaic will be about 10" x 8"


Next I loaded the tiles on to kiln shelves and put them in to the kiln for the bisque fire in my mini kiln (SKUTT 614). If you've seen my past posts, you may notice that this kiln is less than half the size of the smallest models I used to use!!


It has the advantage of plugging in to a standard household 115 Volts bathroom or kitchen outlet which is perfect for my new home studio set-up.


And after the firing, the mosaic is ready for glaze:


Next time I'll take you through the glazing process. Have a great weekend and thanks for your support!


Lucy and Me.JPG

aka Ruth Frances Greenberg, I am a ceramic artist who makes mosaics, tile and all things clay from my home studio in rural Connecticut. I’m here on Steemit to offer my support and friendship to creatives, individuals and projects that I value and want to see more of in the world. The decentralized economy and blockchain technology are promising and I am very pleased to be a part of this exciting new revolution.
Your support means the world to me and enables me to pursue my life and creativity with more freedom and opportunity, thank you! You can learn more about me and my work at

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Aaahh this looks like a new and fun ceramic artwork. And it's pretty cute that you are inspired by that handsome red bird that goes around your place. I have to admit that he's indeed one attractive little guy.

Looking forward to see the continuation :).


isn't he a handsome fellow??? he and his wife are quite the lookers :-)
and yes, to tell you the truth, this is the first thing that I'm really having fun making in over a year! I'm loving it.

That looks amazing, love those red Cardinals, first I thought that they are parrots, but seeing closer it is obvious difference. It is nice to see the whole process of your work and looks like you really put your heart into your work. I am excited to see the final result of your work :)


I guess the crest on the top of the head is similar to a parrot, I hadn't thought of that, lol! Thanks for taking supporting my post and work @stef1 and glad you're still here on steemit doing good work.

The joy of your process made me smile almost as much as the sight of your beautiful feathered couple feeding, with his colours distracting us so she can feed in peace. Your workspace is lovely, btw. 😊

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glad to hear it, and thanks for taking a look at my post

Woow! It looks so cool. I really like the place were you work. This technuque is unusual for me and that's why I go on to see your post. Thanks for sharing. Have a nice day. :)

I love birds, too, and only recently have begun to notice cardinals when I'm up in DC. Good for you to honor them and nature, by turning them into art.

Speaking of which, recently, watched a stunning documentary on Netflix, This Strange Rock, that I think you'll enjoy (about the miracle that is life on Earth).

Cheers :)


DC has a special place in my heart since I lived there as a 17 yr old while I did an internship plus so many great museums and so easy to get around, enjoy! Thanks for the documentary recommendation, I'll take a look!

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The cardinals are so great to see against the white snow in the wintertime. The mosaic is so precise it almost looks like it was laser cut. I can't wait to see the final product!

This is truly wonderful @natureofbeing . I'm only seeing this post today, as I've been trying to keep up with family, art, and posting so I'll not make it to everyone as I should, but alas, what can we do? Do know you are in my thoughts, however :)

I hope you are enjoying your new studio space and still happy for your move. Soon, you'll have Spring so you can forget about New England Winters until, well, another arrives :)


Hoping all is well with your family and getting settled back into your life! Was just thinking about you as I'm scheming about a trip to Boston in July to see a Dr of Chinese Medicine I was referred to.

I'm barely keeping up here too, don't worry if you don't catch every post :-))

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