Thursday, 24 December 2009

happy christmas, happy new year, happy everything! god jul, gott nytt år, gott allting!


(en levande julgris means a living christmas pig - in Sweden there's a tradition of eating ham for christmas. i think it's alot better to let the pigs live, and eat other things instead!)

happy christmas, happy new year, happy everything!


(this is a golden car decoration from Pakistan)

Monday, 21 December 2009

a couple of old poems

i found these as i was looking through bits and pieces of paper, from when i was at the art school in Glasgow and did an elective with Donny O'Rourke. i can't say that they are very good, and i'm not exactly sure whether it's a good idea to post them here, but it was fun to find them, so here area couple of them, about cycling, both kindof the same...

Halfway
birdsong wheelsong cobblestones
highlight halflight both shine
i cycle past my destination

with hair and rain
in face and eyes
in halflight halfdark
i cannot see
the birdwings
strangely stream-
lined bodies hover
and glide and fly
fish in water through
oceans of airsky



A freedom
My bicycle makes up for
wingless shoulder-
blades tonight. Birds
swim and float with
moonlight and clouds
Through the ocean
of air above

this carfree road
and silent buildings.

Propelled
faster forwards
pedalling legs
while wind
empties my head

Flight

Unless i turn back
i will never arrive
i do not know
where am i going?


Saturday, 19 December 2009

space

i just tidied up my desk a little bit and noticed how big it is!
hurray. i should do this more often.

i also have packed up some more things that have spend lots of time in boxes and suitcases. for the first time in a long time i have all my stuff (which is quite alot) in one place! so many books! so much wool & yarn! so many pencils and sketchbooks and bits of postcards-newspapercuttings-insiring-images! all in the same place. all of a sudden there are a hundred projects i want to start at once.

Friday, 18 December 2009

more glaze results on the quartzpaste body, mer resultat på kvartzpasta massan

yesterday i fired up the little kiln again with the glazes that worked out best from my tests, and got results that made me happy. i fired alot higher than i did in Glasgow, to 1060 degrees C, which is a wee bit too high for this body i think, but look at the transparency! and the glaze-fit was really good, no cracks or crazes in sight. (so far!)
igår brände jag den lilla ugnen igen med dom glasyrena som såg bäst ut från mina prover, och fick resultat som gjorde mej glad. jag brände högre än jag gjorde i Glasgow, till 1060 grader, vilket är lite för högt för den här massan, men titta på transperansen! o glasyren verkar passa jättebra, inga sprickor eller crackeleringar i sikte (än så länge!)
i made these little birds from a mold that i made when i was in 2nd year in Glasgow! so they're not exactly news. but i still like making them, nevertheless.
jag gjorde dom här små fåglarna från en gips-form som är från när jag gick på andra året i Glasgow! så dom är inte precis en nyhet. men jag tycker trots allt om att göra dom fortfarande.
and here is the tail of a bird, to show how the transparent glaze turned out.
och här är stjärt-fjädrarna av en annan fågel för att visa hur den transparenta glasyren blev.
but everything didn't turn out well: this was a bowl/dish before i fired it, now it's some kind of strange disc cuase it slumped so much in the kiln. so i'll have to work on that one, and fire a little bit lower...
men allting blev inte så jättebra: det här var en skål/fat innan jag brände det, o nu är det nån form av konstig platt grej för det föll ihop så mycket när jag brände det. så jag får jobba vidare på det, o kanske bränna lite lägre också.

Thursday, 17 December 2009

result, resultat


here are the little picture tiles after they've been fired, to approximately 1130 degrees C. they're not glazed, that's the frit in the quartzpaste body coming out. and they're transluscent! i should have taken a picture this morning when the sun was shining...
här är dom små bilderna när dom är brända, till ungefär 1130 grader. dom är inte glaserade, utan det är frittan i kvartzpastan som kommer fram. o dom är transparenta! jag skulle ha tagit bilderna i morse när solen sken...
i decided to make a few more...
jag bestämde mej för att göra några fler...

i fired the little kiln today with some more glaze-tests (on the quartzpaste body), so tomorrow i'll find out how they turned out. (fingers crossed!)
jag brände den lilla ugnen idag med lite fler glasyrprover (på kvarzpasta "leran"), so imorgon får jag se hur dom blev. (håll tummarna!)

Monday, 14 December 2009

from now on... från och med nu...

...i'll be writing both in english and swedish.
...har jag tänkt skriva både på engelska o svenska. hör av dej, om det är någon av dom gamla posterna du skulle vilja att jag översätter!

Saturday, 12 December 2009

choices

my dad says some wise things. for example, the only things that are certain in life, are that that we must die, and we must choose.
this weekends choice was either to go to Copenhagen and demonstrate at the UN Climate Change Conference, or to stay here in Göteborg.
i ended up staying here -my parents have come to visit for the weekend, we went to a Regina Spektor gig, made a gingerbread house and tomorrow the ceramics-studio i'm part of is having an open-day-christmas-sale.
i think quite alot about what's happening already, and what is going to happen in the near/far future with our climate, environment, world -and everyone living here. a little while ago i read a book called Det är vår bestämda uppfattning att om ingenting görs nu kommer det att vara för sent by Andreas Malm (kindof literally translated to It is our definite understanding that if nothing is done now it will be too late). it's really quite amazing that we still carry on as we do. i sometimes wish i was a scientist so i could understand it all better, but the notion that we (humans) have nothing to do with all the environmental problems at hand seems ludicrous to me...
the questions are so big and huge - we need a whole new economic system! all over the world! the way we live and do things needs to change! and since they're so big, it's easy to feel defeated and disheartened and despondent and discouraged (and all those d-words). it's hard to know what to do everyday.
but i guess that's the thing... that there's always millions of small small choices that we all have to make everyday, and all of them together become something big and huge.
(ps, jag rekommenderar boken, jag lärde mej mycket.)

quartzpaste, continued...

last week i fired some little glaze tests for the quartzpaste (fritware) body, and a couple of them look alright! as you see, some of them weren't quite so good... so that is exciting. the blue one is the same glaze i've been using for the earthenware clay, but it seems to be a good fit on the quartzpaste! the other glaze-tests were just varying proportions of borax frit, kaolin and quartz. fired to 1050 degrees C.
förra veckan brände jag några små glasyr-prover till "kvartzpastan" (fritta-leran), och några av dom ser ut att ha blivit bra! en del, som ni ser, mindre bra... så det är roligt. den blåa är samma som jag har använt hittils på lergods, men den verkar passa bra på kvartzpastan utan några krackeleringar. dom andra är bara olika proportioner borax fritta, kaolin och kvartz, brända till 1050 grader.
i also made a little thing that i really enjoyed! i haven't fired it yet, but soon i will. i just made a little thin tile of the quartzpaste body, covered it with black, and scraped away till i had a picture. i'm looking forward to making more...
jag gjorde också en ny liten grej som var jätteroligt. jag har inte bränt den än, men gör det så snart jag kan. det är bara en tunn liten platta av kvartzpastan, täckt med svart, och sen skrapade jag till jag hade en bild. ser fram emot att göra fler...

recommendation

i'd just like to recommend my friend Maria's blog! click on the numbers, she's posting an advents-calender. click here.

Friday, 20 November 2009

Komet

i've joined a bike club here in Gbg, the one my brother is in - Komet Club Rouleur. their motto is: De såg ut som gudar men levde som svin. (They looked like gods, but lived like swine.)

last weekend they organised a bike film festival, and there was even a Roller Race. i didn't participate, cuase i had a big cold/flu, but here are a couple of films from the finals!




Thursday, 12 November 2009

yes, already: Christmas sales begin

the Christmas exhibition at Sintra starts on Saturday already, so i've submitted some things for it as well. as you can see, i've gotten really quite commercial and have made christmas-tree decorations! what next...?

and now it's dark and cold already...

i feel like it's a very long time since i last wrote... since then, some things have happened.
the biggest thing is that my grandad died. he was 90 years old, and had a long and happy life. he passed away in my grandma's arms.
the funeral was lovely, over 200 people came, and i got all sorts of reminders about what is actually important in life... we miss him.
i've moved into a flat with my two lovely sisters, close to both my studio and work. so my legs are not getting as much cycling, but it saves alot of time! and it's great living here. please come visit.
also, before i left the States, i got a little tattoo. it's from a drawing by Ardeshir Mohasses, an Iranian artist/cartoonist. when my grandma saw it, she paused for a while and then said "... well, it's the inside that counts." but i really like it.

Sunday, 25 October 2009

thanks to my very generous friend...

... i have been able to make some progress with the frit-ware tests! Isabelle, at the Owl & Lion gallery in Edinburgh, gave me a little test-kiln and a whole load of other useful stuff this summer when we were visiting Scotland!!! it works really well, and has been brilliant for testing different recipes. it was harder before, since no-one else in my studio fires to the same temperatures, and i didn't want to fire a whole big kiln with only 5 little tests in it.
so a million thank you's again to her.
now i just have to get a good glaze that doesn't chip etc, and then i'll get back to making turquoise birds and bowls again :-).

result

i was a little bit disappointed when i opened up the kiln a few days ago. i had been in a bit of a rush when i was glazing and packing, so the glaze on some of the bowls was way too thick and (of course) stuck to the shelf. i can save the small ones thanks to J's dremmel machine, but the big one will the hares will probly have to go to the place where all the other unsuccessful pots go: we have a special bin and hammer in our studio, where (with some satisfaction) we crush and break and destroy things that haven't turned out so well. so next time i'll try not to be in a hurry...
but a few of the other things turned out alright. i'll take some proper pictures of them before putting them out for sale.
soon it's time for Christmas sales, both at Sintra and our studio, so i have some ideas for that...

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

waiting, waiting, waiting...

i've got a kiln-load firing this very minute...
i can't wait till it's ready and i can open it up!
i'll let you know how it goes tomorrow.

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

hot air

last week i went and bought myself a hot-air-gun. the best thing i've done in a while, i think!
it means i can speed some things up (e.g. lifting a shallow bowl off the wheel-head) and also: i can put on slip with a brush instead of pouring! i.e. no drips, it uses much less slip, it's alot quicker, and generally neater and bettter.
so that's pretty good.
Johan Svanbom, who works in the same studio as me, gave me some coloured earthenware slips earlier this year -dark blue, yellow, green & pink- which i rehydrated and am now trying out. tack, Johan! can't wait to see how they turn out when they're fired...

and it's ready!

my website is now ready:
www.estersvensson.com

thank you to Andy and Marcus (round of applause: )!

Monday, 21 September 2009

soon...(ish)

yesterday i registered a domain for my website, that i'm working on (thanks to Andy and Marcus for your help)! it'll have pretty much the same things that you've already seen here, but in an easier format.
i'll let you know when it's finished.
i'll keep this blog going as well, but it'll turn more into a news-inspiration-work&thoughts-in-progress thing than it is now.

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

new machine

i did something i've thought about doing for a long time: i bought one of those printer-scanner-copier machines! it was a really cheap one, but so far seems to be doing a good job. so you might be seeing a few more drawings in the future...

Sintra window exhibition

i've got a little exhibition of little bowls up for the next three weeks, at Sintra, a shop/gallery here in Göteborg. i've also been accepted as a member there for the next year, so i'll have other work there too from 1st October.

here's what it looks like:

Monday, 31 August 2009

cycling

last Friday was Critical Mass Friday! we luckily happened upon it, and it was alot bigger (of course) than any other place i've been to CM ride. it was fun, and included for example sitting on a hill and driving down a dead-end street. the drivers of Austin were pretty freindly -even the ones that didn't seem to like what we were doing, for example one man who sat stranded in his car, surrounded by a sea of bicycles, who kept saying "Thankyou for obeying the law! Thankyou for obeying the law!"

Saturday morning, together with a friend of A's, we cycled to Hamilton Pool, which was so beautiful! and swimming felt really amazing after cycling in the sun.

we camped in a park about 20miles from the pool, and heard strange noises in the night, maybe coyotes?

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Big Bend National Park

we rented a little car and drove down to Big Bend State Park. well worth a visit! it was really beautiful. here is a little selection of the millions of photos we took:
A's very special birthday meal:
the light reminded me of Afghanistan... the same cloud-shadows.

i don't have good pictures of them, but we also saw a big hairy tarantula and a rattlesnake and another little snake, lots of different birds (e.g. different kinds of hummingbirds) and butterflies, a little mouse, and squirrels, and 2 kinds of rabbits, 2 kinds of deer. and lots of beautiful colourful insects. we didn't see any javelina's, black bears, or mountain lions. we'll just have to go back.

Mexico