Saturday, August 22, 2009

Sweet Saturday: Endless Whimsy Feature!

I am sorry for my absence yesterday and the accompanying absence of the "Fabulous Friday Feature" I normally do each week. Brennan had an appointment at a hospital in the city (nothing serious, don't worry), but it was at 7:50AM, which meant we had to be up at 5:30 and out the door by 6:30 AM (insert collective shudder here). By the time we got back I was so sore I couldn't do much more than sleep.
However, today is a new day and without further adieu, I present the belated Friday Feature, on Saturday.
Endless Whimsy is a fantastic artist whom I found when I joined the Etsy for Animals Street Team last year. Renovia makes beautiful sculptures and when my cat Gandalf died in November, I knew that her tribute sculptures would be perfect to honor and memorialize my special little guy. Sure enough, they turned out fabulously well (I got one for my mom too). When my parents' cat,Sheeeba, went over the rainbow bridge a week or so ago, I knew that I should call upon Renovia once more to make us some tribute sculptures in memory of her. Read on to find out more about this great artist.
1. How you got started doing your art:
A couple of years ago at the school where I teach the administration was on a 'wellness' kick. So the teachers got roped into taking classes taught by other teachers in the district. I signed up for a clay class with one of the art teachers. I was so incredibly excited about it - I took notes at night before bed about what I wanted to use my precious class time for. I knew I wanted to make a cat sculpture that was modern. So after a couple of sketches, I came up with a pose, the stretch pose. After class I went out and got some polymer clay because I just kept thinking about poses. I made about 20 cats in a couple different poses and loved all of them. Then I just figured the next step was to see if anyone else would like them. The polymer sculptures really took off and after a while I decided to make the jump into porcelain.
Porcelain offers detail that you just can't get in polymer. Sure you can get detail in polymer, but the way I pull the sculptures into shape, it eventually distorts some of the details. Plus I love having different price ranges and different mediums because everyone likes different things.

2. Your inspirations:
My inspirations are my cats; Stoli (a Russian Blue) and Luxor (an Egyptian Mau). They both have crazy personalities and antics - and photographing them was just not enough. So when I see a new sleeping position or a playful pounce, I try to capture it in clay.

3. Your favorite pieces:
If we're talking about my favorite pieces I make, I have a love/hate relationship with tributes. Next to solid black cats, they are the most popular thing I make. It's difficult to begin because I knowsome one's heart is hurting from the loss of a pet and it makes me sad every time I have to make one of these sculptures. But I love doing it because I know that this special sculpture is going to mean so much to someone and hopefully it will make them smile and bring back many good memories.

4. Are you involved with any animal or other charitable organizations and, if so, how that came about:
My husband and I volunteer for the Homeless Animal Rescue Team in Cumberland, Maine, a no-kill feline shelter. We decided one day after we gotStoli and Luxor that because we had not taken in shelter cats (and we were limited by our living conditions to only 2 cats) we would do what we could to help cats still living in shelters.

I feel very thankful that I have been able to pursue my passion for cats and art in a way that is satisfying and rewarding to more than just myself.

Thank you so much Renovia, your art is simply sublime! Please do visit her shop to see some of her fabulous works.

Also, don't forget about my contest, see HERE for details.

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