Studio, Gallery and Life: 44, Passing The Series 7 and 8 Exams

Good morning.  How was your week and your weekend?  I am a “love the sunshine” girl. It’s a rainy morning here in West Michigan.  Today, I am ok with the weather.  Sundays are my day for reading and family.

Perusing the New York Times this morning, a title caught my eye “How the Pandemic made a tough test even tougher.”  Immediately, I knew the paper was talking about passing the Chartered Financial Analyst test.  It’s a tough one.  You may not know this about me, I was a stockbroker.  I loved it!  I loved getting to know someone with regard to their hopes and dreams for the future. Most dreams involve saving money so that you can do that “thing”.  My job was to help them save wisely.  Along the way, I heard about family and what was important to them.  Passing the Series 7 exam is tough.  It’s long and grueling.  A life lesson for me,  (the gal who almost always got A’s in school.) I didn’t pass it the first time.  You need a 70% to pass it.  I studied but said to myself, “you only need a C.  You can get that without much trouble.” I scored a 69%.  I was mortified.

I returned home and studied this time.  I could retake the test in 30 days.  I passed it with a 96%.  Did I tell you that I loved being a broker?  I did!  Almost as much as I love being a ceramic artist.  What I loved about it?  You always had things to read, learn about, and evaluate.  I loved talking with people. This was a win-win career for me. After several years, I was asked to become a manager.  I had to pass the Series 8 (now the 9/10) Exam.  I didn’t screw around this time.  I got right to work studying for it.  Passed it the first time.  Whew!

But, then, I was re-introduced to clay.  It was an ah-ha moment.  The clay world and all of its challenges has kept my interest for more than 26 years.  There is always the question, “What if I do this to the clay?  What if I add this chemical to a glaze? Can I make this?”

When I started taking pottery wheel classes, it was hard.  It took me forever to learn how to center 2 pounds of clay. In the beginning, I only had time to be in the clay center once a week.  It took me a long time to throw a decent cylinder. Finally, I could do it.  My best friend, told me ten years later, that she thought I would never learn how to make a decent pot on the potter’s wheel.  But, I stuck with it.  Now, it’s like riding a bike.  Muscle memory.

cyndi casemier 1998
cyndi casemier artist at work

Many years later, I opened C2C Gallery in my Lake Michigan beach town.  The gallery made me smile when helping artists offer their art to the public.  Plus, we educated visitors about the paintings, glass, jewelry, and ceramics that they saw in the shop.  We hosted artist talks and paid local musicians to perform monthly.  We did this for 10 years.  Now, we have Covid. I am in the studio more.  I have been looking and reading a lot.  Interesting art being made around the world.  For me the big question is,  what should I wrestle with that I find interesting? More importantly, what would other people find of value? Hmmm. More reading is definitely necessary. Actually, more time with my hands in clay is required.

Freighter coming into port

This week in the gallery, you will find reduced prices on our art photography.  Bob Walma’s photos feature our lakeshore at its best.  The clouds, our shoreline, and interesting lines found in architecture or nature.  Think Holiday gifts or just for you.

Image of Bob Walma looking for a shot

I hope you have a good week.  I am getting on the elliptical machine and into the studio.

Take good care,


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *