“If I Could Fly” Winged Horse Tile

I’ve had this imagery in my head for over 10 years: A winged horse, soaring, twisting and turning in the air, clearly flying for the joy of it. Because it can fly!!

I’ve tried three times to sculpt this. But I always abandon it because a.) Sculpting wings is annoying and tedious!; b.) Engineering it onto a suitable base that would support the in-flight idea was inevitably not satisfying. I hate clear pegs, posts, rods, and pretty much all bases; c.) It is hard to imagine casting it in ceramic and having any pieces survive!

Last month I had the thought to sculpt this concept into a low-relief tile/plaque. I’ve been needing a new item to use as a giftware item from the studio. (As I celebrate my 60th birthday in April, I’m devoting more of my artistic and hobby energy to Giving Back and Paying Forward.)

Here is the result. It’s still not exactly as I can see it in my mind, but it’s close.


I’ve named the piece “If I Could Fly”, and in resin it measures 4” x 12”. A nice BIG canvas for those who love to paint things!!

It’s going to officially debut this July as the overall champion prizes at The Resin Futurity model horse show, a Breyerfest event. You can buy one of 25 resin casts available at that event… and then from me if you bump into me during Breyerfest. Then another 25 will be for sale on my website July 17th.

I also expect to produce these in ceramic, hopefully porcelain. Plus maybe transparent resin and cast glass!!

They will be primarily used for GIFTING, so that’s why the for-sale quantity next summer is limited.

I’ve started painting one in acrylics and oils:


Just think of how many great ways the sky alone could be painted!

Keep following, for more details. Westerly Design is on Facebook, and I’m now on Instagram: @traveldogartpony.




Custom Glazed “Sencillo” at Auction

Here is a newly completed custom glaze project, now up for sale in a website-based online auction. 

AUCTION ENDS:Sunday, October 7, 2018, at 6 pm MST.
UPDATE: AUCTION HAS ENDED with the buy it now option.

This is a very rare china “Sencillo” Mustang sculpted by Jennifer Scott, of Aspen Leaf Studios. (The link sends you to the Sencillo bone china edition page.) There were only 10 OFs made in one colorway, and no update on how many CMG pieces are out there. It was cast in fine English bone china by Animal Artistry, and Jennifer generously made one of the bisques (without the base) available to me as a guest finisher.

This one has been glazed by me to a glossy finish bay roan tobiano. It is a wonderful sculpture and was a pleasure to glaze. 

I’m holding a web-based best offers auction for this guy. Please go to this link for all the details.


Custom Glaze Commission Chosen

I made my decision about which china piece to glaze (from a group of GREAT proposals). The owner of the chosen one has already been contacted privately.

Many, many, thanks to everyone who sent in an idea. I want to let you know that I am keeping ALL of them here in a folder, and I may still contact you at some other time to glaze your chinas.

I decided to not take on more than one this season, because I do have some glazing projects of my own I want very much to complete. My #1 priority for this fall is to finish this new action Arabian sculpture, tentatively named “Ghazir” which means “exultant, rapturous, cheerful, exuberant” in Arabic.


I hope you have a wonderful autumn season. It’s my favorite time of year here in the Colorado High Country. As the Aspens start turning all shades of gold and orange, we are on the lookout for the first signs of snow on the high peaks!

Reminder: CMG commission proposals due Sept 1st

A quick reminder that the deadline to get a proposal in to me for a custom glazing commission is September 1st. A week from today.

I have received many great ideas so far and I might choose two instead of just one! So give it a shot. You may discover it’s not that expensive, since you own the china bisque and I just do the glazing.

Go to the original commission blog post for all details.

Thank you!

An Opening for One China Custom Glazing Commission for Fall/Winter

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA “Sharif” that I custom glazed in 2017. Sculpture by Brigitte Eberl, a bone china bisque produced by Horsing Around.

I just agreed to take on a custom glazing commission, from someone who inquired with what I guess I’d say was… the Right Thing At The Right Time.

I’m also currently in the zone with a new sculpture that I started in late July. I find that it is great to bounce between these two very different work things. When I’m stalled or bored with one I can go to the other and stay fresh and engaged overall.

Since I’ve been telling everyone that I’m closed to glazing commissions indefinitely… I think it’s only fair to offer a slot to everyone else. Just one. I’m usually at my most productive in the studio in fall/winter so it’s a good time. My creative juices always rise like sap in the fall. I wonder why that is?

Rules for sending in a CMG proposal for consideration

Please read everything below before you make a proposal. Write out your answers to the questions and send it in an email to me. I will choose one proposal and send that person a price quote. The commission will be finished by the end of March 2019 or sooner.

Deadline to submit a commission proposal: September 1, 2018.  Email Karen

Depending upon whether we’ve worked together before, I may ask for a good-faith deposit upfront. You’ll be expected to pay in full by the time the piece is finished and ready to ship. I will keep you updated regularly on progress so that you’ll know when payment will be due. There are no time payment plans accepted, but you’ll basically have until end of next March to gather the funds.

If I finish the glazing and you can’t pay… remember I’ve got your china piece and will be keeping it until you do. And possibly there will be other consequences for extreme non-payment, like putting the piece up for sale. I will respect and protect the valuable china you send me. My time and skills are valuable too; please respect and honor that.

Overglazing is super great for predictability of color, outcomes, and consistency. I have over 15 years experience doing this and a lot of confidence. But glazing a china piece has some risks involved. Unexpected things happen in the kiln. Possibly minor changes in the color or markings you specify might need to be made if something didn’t fire the right way. Fortunately this is rare and a lot of goofs/flaws can be easily fixed or painted over. So don’t worry too much!

If I make a mistake in the process of glazing, please be assured that you will be compensated in full for the value of the unglazed china. But think twice about proposing a rare china that can’t be replaced.

Any china piece I agree to glaze must be undamaged and unrestored. I will first test-fire in the kiln any piece I receive to glaze. If it falls apart in the kiln due to hidden restorations or other flaws (which has happened to me!!!) I will not be held liable for that test-fire damage to a piece you that thought was mint. Some porcelain restorations are very very good!

Writing your proposal

1. What china horse do you want glazed?

Name and describe the bisque or glazed china that you want to have glazed. I can glaze almost any kind of white ceramic… earthenware, bone china, porcelain, etc.

I can also overglaze an existing colored china, like a Hagen-Renaker current re-issue piece. (I cannot remove the existing color of the china to make the piece bisque or white again.) Keep in mind for these, that I can most often only go darker, so a light color on the original is best.

2. What color do you want?

Tell me which kind of commission this is; what kind of commission-er you are! I will consider proposals where:
— I choose the color entirely.
— You say “bay” and I choose the white markings.
— You are hyper-specific down to the last detail.

Reference photos are highly recommended/helpful. Complexity of the color will dictate price and amount of time needed to do the work.

3. What final finish do you want?

It can be glossy, matte or satin. I can put gloss and matte areas on the same piece, too.

4. One complete proposal per email only!

You can send in more than one proposal; as many as you like. I have no idea what submission of piece or color will catch my fancy. But each proposal must be sent in SEPARATE EMAILS.

Want to see examples of my past glazing work? Go to my website and have a look around! There’s lots to see.

Thanks for your interest and here’s my email link again, for submission(s): Email Karen

2018 BreyerFest goodies… and existential digressions

At the beginning of this year I was all excited about a new sculpture being completed in the spring. In anticipation of showing it off, I decided to take a table at the Artisan’s Gallery during the 3-day BreyerFest extravaganza in July. Well, best laid plains have a habit of going astray for me and this spring was no exception. The sculpture is completely not happening, I’ve lost my sculpture mojo, again.

Because I was committed to the AG exhibit space, after getting back to the studio from two months of travel, I decided to glaze some chinas. I need to get more of the significant whiteware pieces in my archive glazed and out in the world.

This feels like a more urgent mission recently, because among other sucky things in my life the past couple years, I was diagnosed with a disease in my right hand, where eventually the middle and ring fingers of my hand will contract tightly down towards my palm. Hopefully not for decades, but it’s progressing. (I’m turning 60 next year and getting old is a ton of craaaap!!) Anyway, I can’t guarantee that I’ll even be able to use my right hand for painting or sculpting within 10 years. The few options for this disease including surgery are not very impressive, and they can’t do anything to arrest the progression; they only do surgery etc. when the fingers actually start to contract! Like I said, sucky! Oh and on top of that I’m getting arthritis in both hands, starting with the thumbs. YAY!

I did get a few things glazed in the month of June, but because I am SLOW, not as much as I would have liked. Here are three pieces that are going to be for sale at my BF AG table at the Clarion hotel in Lexington.

The AG opens Thursday July 12th at 5:30pm, and then is open from 7:30pm on Friday and Saturday nights. I will sell to the first person that can pay in full, in person, either PayPal or cash. No pre-holds or time payments.

If you can’t get to BreyerFest this year, don’t despair because I plan to keep on glazing ceramics. It will be a priority because I have a lot of beautiful pieces that need to get glazed. I was feeling panicky about getting one more sculpture done NOW in case I can’t do it anymore someday soon, which probably is a big reason why the horse didn’t come out right at all. I can’t work on things like that unhappy or under pressure. So now I’m not sure if I even want to try for a new work. I probably need to work through some issues regarding what being an artist means to me for the latter part of my life! But I did always think that even if I was in a wheel chair and couldn’t snowboard or hike or walk or whatever, I could still use my hands to draw or paint or make stuff! Life is full of surprises.

Believe it or not even after the previous depressing paragraphs I am NOT depressed. I am generally a think-positive person and I am just going forward to whatever’s next with clear eyes and optimism to make lemonade out of lemons.

BUT I DIGRESS! On to the BF goodies, such as they are.

Oh… and here’s a peek at the Hagen-Renaker 9″ Zara (re-issue) that I did NOT get finished, but which I will be painting this summer. I own so many other nice chinas to glaze so stay tuned to this space!

Hagen-Renaker 6″ “Zara” Arabian Mare

This (was) a San Dimas era H-R Zara in light grey, satin finish, with no breaks, but a minor chip in two hoof edges. I have custom overglazed her to a dapple grey, 3 socks, blaze. Much added detailing to mane, tail, and forelock, completely repainted the eyes, and finished off with a light coat of gloss glaze. A decal has been fired onto the belly that states “Painted by Karen Gerhardt, 2018”, which will identify this piece as CMG.
Asking $1100.00

“Roundabout” Heavyweight British Show Cob

This is my 2011 sculpture, cast in earthenware china. There have only been 16 pieces made so far of this work. Roundabout is hard to cast from his molds, so I’m not sure how many more I will be making. This one has been customized at the greenware clay stage to be a mare, rather than a gelding. She has been glazed to a lovely shaded chestnut tobiano with one blue eye. Reference photos for the color pattern will come with the horse, which was on a Gypsy Cob.
Asking $650.00

Hagen-Renaker “Ferseyn” Arabian Stallion

This is a fun piece for H-R fans. A recent re-issue from Hagen-Renaker, it was originally a glossy white with light grey points. It was a good candidate for overglazing, because the gloss glaze was very heavily applied, and not all that carefully. (Note: The finish does have a few tiny pinholes.) It was not that great of an OF piece for collectors. I gave him a gorgeous deeply shaded airbrushed silver bay color. The mane and tail have hand-painted detail enhancements. His eyes have been repainted, there’s a star and one sock. A decal has been fired onto the belly that states “Painted by Karen Gerhardt, 2018”, which will identify this piece as CMG.
Asking $450.00

“Okie Clay” Blue Art Glaze

I’ve had this piece in my collection for awhile, and I decided to bring him along. This is an “Okie Clay” earthenware china foal sculpted by Carol Williams and produced by Pour Horse. The left hind leg had broken, but I was able to make a kiln-repair (where I fix the break using gloss glaze over the break and fire in the kiln). It came out well enough (you can still feel a crease in the leg if you’re looking for it) that I gave it a fun and interesting art-glaze blue, with black points.
Asking $150.00

Two Free Drawings

Followers of my Facebook page will remember this guy:


This “Heart of Darkness” earthenware came out of the kiln with a slightly bent leg. So I used him to test some art glazes, with this crazy result! Rather than keep him around as reference for the glazes (or at least as studio mascot), I’m giving him away in a free drawing at the AG.

I am also giving away a bone china “Boreas” Percheron head, in glossy unpainted white. It has a hole in the back for hanging on a plaque etc. This is one of only two of these that I have left.

You can put your name in for these for a free drawing at my table, one chance per person. I’ll be drawing for each item at 9:00pm on Friday night July 14th. Must be present to win!

I hope to see you in two weeks!


Custom Glazed “Boreas” Percheron for sale

Click on any image to bring up a full sized version.

UPDATE: This piece is sold.

This is a just-completed bone china version of my “Boreas” Percheron sculpture. It is part of a group of pieces I’m glazing right now to bring to BreyerFest in July to sell. I decided to offer this one online customers as a pre-sale. You can either pick him up from me at BreyerFest, or I will ship him to you.

This is a nearly-black horse, just starting to grey. He has more greying bits in his hips and very very subtle areas on the legs, but I just can’t get it to photograph. (New photography lighting setup coming soon!) I only own ONE more unglazed Boreas in bone china. There will be no more made. Though I do own the molds so more pieces in earthenware china will be made. Nothing beats the slightly translucent quality of bone china for beautiful glazing and finish!

I’m asking $850.00 for him if you pick him up in Kentucky at BreyerFest next month. $900.00 if I am to ship him to you, shipping via Fedex paid. Payment in full via PayPal is the only option a this time.

If you would like to buy,  Email Karen