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June BOC Spotlight on Marsha Hedrick

Marsha Hedrick  is our BOC Spotlight artist for June. Marsha has several registered names. She uses Porcelain Fantasies for her dollhouse miniatures. She uses Amazing Porcelain for beads and jewelry, and for her Native American pieces she uses Natika's Porcelain Art .

Marsha lives in Tonopah, Arizona about  30 miles west of Phoenix.

Marsha has been working with clay pretty much non stop since 1986, but she did some ceramics before that in 1975. Marsha uses many types of clay, although she mostly works in in porcelain and prefers it for its texture, beauty and translucence. She has a beautiful dark red stoneware that she likes and has used both white and terracotta earthenware. Marsha has dabbled in Egyptian paste and most recently she has been digging some of her own clay and refining it. Some of the Native American competitions require that the potter dig their own clay.

Marsha fires mostly in a kiln but she also does some outdoor firing and will probably do more of that for the Native American work. Many of the competitions in addition to requiring that you dig your own clay require that you fire it traditionally which means in a hole or fire on the ground.

Marsha's process depends on the piece.  Some things are slip cast then the seam lines are cleaned off and the piece is fired. Some are hand built then fired.  Some are then glazed and fired again and are at that point done.  Others are not glazed but are either sanded or tumbled to smooth them down more.  Some pieces continue from that point to be china painted and fired several more times. Marsha china paints on both glazed and bisque pieces.  Some pieces are either hand built or cast and then decorated with slip in a slip trailing method and then fired.  Others are decorated with underglaze then fired. Some are glazed, some not, some have china paint or overglazes added, some don't.  So summarizing the steps are:

1. Slip cast or hand build the piece.
2. Clean off seam lines on cast pieces or sand hand built pieces if necessary or hand burnish in some cases.
3. If piece is to be decorated with slip trailing or underglazed -it is done now.
4. Fire to bisque.  (Marsha usually fires porcelain to cone 4 if it is going to be glazed or cone 6 if it isn't )
5. If the piece is to be glazed it is glazed and fired to maturity at this point.  Otherwise it is either sanded or tumbled to smooth it down.
6. If the piece is to be decorated with china paints, it will be painted and fired at a much lower temperature -an average of 3 more times.
7. Gold, mother of pearl or other luster accents and finishes are added as a final firing.

Marsha's favorite glazes include clear, a glaze called sierra gold that I really like but it is
a very picky glaze. Also fire opal, a pink glaze which  Marsha is quite fond.  But for the most part she really like overglazes and china paint techniques much better than glazes which is why clear glaze is her favorite.  There is so much more variety and opportunities with those techniques.

Marsha's favorite themes include fantasy, floral, and animals. Her Inspirations-nature, movies, animals.Marsha says, " It does help to have a warped mind sometimes."

 When asked who she admires -she named Chris Campbell, Curtis Benzle, Wallace Nez, Jr., Dorothy Feibleman, Judith De Vries. Mostly she admires people that do impossible things.

Marsha sells her work on the internet through her various web pages:

http://www.blogger.com/%20%20http://porcelainfantasies.com%20for the miniatures,
http://porcelainfantasies.com%20/for the jewelry and beads,
 http://choctawart.com for the Native American pieces.

She also sells on Etsy: http://porcelainfantasies.com%20/and at various shows including The Best Bead Show in Tucson.

Marsha's advice to newbies is to try to do things that you don't think you will succeed at at least sometimes to push yourself to improve your skills.  Remember you can't please all the people all the time and you should first and foremost please yourself.  If you work at pleasing everyone else to the exclusion of yourself it will become work and lose its fun and interest and your creativity will go away.

Marsha's favorite tool is a small X-acto professional swivel knife..

I thank Marsha for this great interview and lots of information. Joan Tucker


  1. Wonderful post Joan. So much I didn't know about Marsha. She is an incredible and very talented artist. I think she often does the "impossible."
    Thanks so much for telling us about Marsha.

  2. Thank you for featuring Marsha, her work is beautiful and unique. One can see the great detail and the time to make such pretty work. Thank you Joan for getting us to know Marsha a bit more.

  3. very well
    information you write it very clean. I’m very lucky to get this information from you.

  4. Yes indeed, Marsha is multi talented and she are lucky to have her in BOC. Joan T

  5. .. correction and we are lucky to have her in BOC, JT

  6. I love how versatile Marsha is in all her clay art. She's inspiring in every way. I love her miniatures, her beads, her native art, the fact that she digs up and processes her own clays is also very fun. I can't javascript:void(0)wait to see what she does next!

  7. So very nice to know a bit more about Marsha. I'm familiar with some of her work but not the whole picture of what she does. Good work and inspiring to learn more about her. Thank you!

  8. Thanks to everyone for all the kind words. Thank you Joan for doing a great job with all the information. I hope you will all visit my various websites and follow me on facebook. A couple of corrections to the post. The websites were sort of garbled up.
    My Etsy is http://amazingporcelain.etsy.com
    My Beads and Jewelry website is http://amazingporcelain.com
    My Native American Website is http://choctawart.com
    My miniatures website is http://porcelainfantasies.com

  9. Marsha, that first bead, the pink flower needs to be included in a design for the Art Bead Scene Blog Monthly Challenge this month. It's perfect.

  10. The link is not working to her etsy shop!
    Help Please!


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