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The Handy Dandy Tool Box as a Bridge

Updated: May 9, 2021

For so long, I was used to having just one studio at The Clay Lady Campus in Nashville, where I loved seeing my clay friends, having lunch by the waterfall, catching up, taking a break in the Clay Cafe, and creating. It was a connection to the community--both of artists, and of those interested in the arts, a place where I enjoyed the many ongoing events, and a place where I enjoyed listening to the relaxing music in the Gallery as I meandered, sipping a cup of tea to see what was new. I didn't have to worry about where to buy supplies or equipment, as the store was just in another building...but then the Pandemic hit, and while the CLC remained open, creative and active, I decided to play it safe at home, at least for a while.

I'm standing in front of my friend, Tammy Gentuso's wonderfully detailed "Nashville Clayscape" on The Clay Lady Campus. Hope you can make it to the eventual unveiling scheduled for September 11, 2021. With Tammy's permission, here is a sneak peak of just a bit of it. It's awesome and I hope you'lls top by to see the rest of her work in the Gallery or check her out on Instagram. 

At first during Covid, I started working only from home, working both as a therapist doing Teletherapy in one corner, and as a sculptor in another corner, eventually developing a larger home studio in my bonus room. Since Covid, the up side of having a home studio for me has been that I don't have to wear a mask when I work from home, I don't have to drive 30 minutes on a good traffic day to get to start to work, and I don't have to worry about Covid and its variants. So you may wonder, why do I keep my Clay Lady Campus studio? Aside from all of the reasons I've listed in the first paragraph, who doesn't need another tax deduction, socialization, and a place to display your work?

I continue to practice Teletherapy in the same room from home, because it offers the most privacy of the whole house, and as the clay dust seems to accumulate in my bonus room carpeting, I'm working on convincing my husband that we need different flooring. After all, clay dust isn't good for electronics and it's a real health hazard. I'm slowly learning that a home studio isn't as cheap as you would think, especially after purchasing a kiln, a wedging table, and maybe even an eventual slab roller. But besides the expense, a home studio can be pretty isolating and if I run out of paint or clay, I have to make a significant trip to get it.

For now, at least until we really get past Covid, I've decided to keep both studios but the bad news in having two studios is rather classic. Yes, whatever you need is in the other location. It took me a while to figure out how to solve this dilemma, but tradesmen figured it out a long time ago. Buy two of everything? No, but a handy dandy plastic tool box and some plastic glasses have solved a lot of frustraions for me. I just keep a few of the very basics (like plastic bags) in each place, and tote the tool box back and forth. Easy peasy. I can get things fired in either location, so I don't have to worry about the breakage of pieces during transit. There's a place for pretty much everything in the plastic tool box that l need as a sculptor. I paid three bucks for it at Goodwill and got the plastic glasses at the Dollar Store. Who knew that Goodwill and the Dollar Store would have such good investments? But that may be a topic for another time.

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