• ragandstone

Update on this dusty bench!


Mostly to fire this tired ass up and hold myself accountable.

And for the deadline that always seems to help me finish what I've started!

It seems my last shop update was, gulp, almost 3 months ago.

It's been too long since I've had solid chunks of time to master some one-of-a-kind work.

Their remnants and sketches and piles are everywhere on the bench.

It's a freaking project GRAVEYARD in there!

I've been cranking away, filling orders and stocking up galleries across the state,

with a small line of production work I'm able to keep in-house and affordable.

The reality though, as the fall progresses, is this:

I've been barely able to keep up.

Between work, travel, family and other super-exciting life endeavors,

(Jesse and I got engaged over the summer!)

the world has been an absolute blur.

Shit-storm. Blur-fest. Rowdy-town. Manic. Epic. Awesome. Ridiculous.

I'll have many more posts to explain myself, as some of those projects and things aren't yet totally solidified at the moment. More to come. I promise.

But besides the blurry summer behind me,

the fall has come earlier than I remember.

Sneaky fall.

Or maybe I was too busy enjoying myself to pay attention to the changes around me.

The peony leaves turned orange long before I was ready,

and their blooming faces are even further along in drying fall fashion.

The birch tree is currently losing most of her leaves,

the blanket of crusty carpet below her gets thicker by the minute.

I can hear the leaves falling from the open door at my studio bench.

Once in awhile, the fawns in the neighborhood go crunching through the yard.

In all this orangey fire,

and all this color of a changing month,

I'm drawn to slowing.

Cooling my jets, so to say.

I'd like to take a lesson from the falling leaf ballet outside,

and just let the wind do her thing.

I'd like to just do MY THING, just like that.

Free-fall gracefully into oblivion.

I'd like to keep up with the things that really fire me up,

but also center my world of creative capacity.

That can be a tricky thing as a full-time studio artist.

Chasing the dollar and the opportunity can sometimes fall short,

and it always comes back to the work itself.

The true work.


It's been a wild wild summer,

ablaze with work and some of the most awesome play out there,

both creative and personal,

traveling to near and far corners of the country,

dipping in a little toe everywhere I could,

sometimes jumping in without looking to the bottom.

I'm talking BIG POOLS. And seemingly unending deep ones, at that.

I've read more books and written more than I ever have in the past 6 months.

I've taken on artist-in-residences, new homes for my work, new outlets.

I've climbed on arctic ice-hunks and seen the mighty mississippi doin' her slow thing.

I've spent magical time in the backcountry with some truly talented souls.

I've done so much deep and intense self-work.

I've spent more time than I can ever remember with my family,

and extensions of it.

I must say,

the fire of life sure is lovely.

This Autumn season is no different, showing off the best of crimsons and golds.

The entire Rocky Mountain West is bringing summers finale upfront and center.

The summer of 2016 will go down in history for me as a total ass-kicking BLAST!

Hard at work and hard at play.

But it's time to wrap up these piles of projects,

these promises made to folks who have the patience of saints.

For the season ahead,

I'm drawn to the cooler tones of agate and jasper.

A stark contrast of this fiery Fall that Montana is currently steeped in.

Blue tones remind me of big pools filled,

calming tones of gray and purple and rich rich burgundy,

colors of peace and calm and clarity.

For the week ahead, and hopefully the rest of the year,

I'm drawn to finishing things I've started.

Aside from the twenty or so stones that have bezels but no backplates,

I'm rounding up ideas.

Rounding out sketches.

Polishing notes and words and perfecting big collaborative projects.

I'm putting the caps on containers and the sharpie marker (my fave)

and I'm even filing away paperwork,

doing the dreaded last pile of laundry,

decommissioning that last perennial flower bed I said I'd finish years ago.

I feel I'm coming full circle from a full growing season.

And like all flowers.

It's time for a little cool.

A little calm.

And a little energy into those roots, baby.

#shopupdate #autumn

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© 2020 All images, photography, and text copyrighted under and property of Erin Hawley and Rag and Stone Studio. Do not copy, cite, or reproduce without written permission of artist. Thank you.