Friday, March 13, 2009

Guest Blogger of the Week - Rachel Bates

One of my fellow Stuck in the 60's guildmembers is Rachel Bates of tilesmile. Rachel makes wonderful tiles and other clay items, and ... well, I'm going to let her tell you about herself and her work!

I'm a full time studio potter living in North Texas. It seems that words have evolved into the work I do - when I think back I've always been interested in language and in the impact of words, whether spoken or written. I began my love for red clay many years ago after taking a workshop with Ron Meyers at Arrowmont School and have never turned back.


I think making tiles satisfies my architectural roots being raised by an architect and an artist. The words that go on them come from a desire to make people feel something and connect with each other in a warm and wonderful way. A tilesmile is sort of like a greeting card that people don't throw away. I've got plenty of paper cards that I have recieved - they are in a filing cabinet because I can't throw them out. But a tilesmile is different. It conveys a message that can be put on a desk or installed in a kitchen - a daily endearment, a funny word, or an inspirational statement. I've even done songs for people to install in their shower, so they can sing while they scrub.I'm also a painter - watercolor mostly, but love painting in encaustics too.

In clay I also make custom sinks and backsplashes, stove backsplashes, and lots of bowls of abundance. All of these items can be viewed at my website http://www.shadybranch.net/. Say it with a SMILE and a handmade TILE!
Thanks, Rachel! And don't forget you can buy her beautiful work at her ArtFire shop tilesmile!
Next week, my guest blogger will be a very talented Mosaic artist... stop by Friday, March 20th, and you can read about her fabulous work!

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