A Shot of Hope

A Shot of Hope

Happy New Year. This is often the time when me make resolutions and commitments to new goals.  Before jumping ahead to hopes and aspirations for 2021 the PinchPals and I want to take a step back. The plans we had in place for 2020, like many of your plans, were altered dramatically by the pan-dam-demic.

First and foremost we Thank You. To all of you who continue on the journey with us, your purchase and gifting of products, watching and liking videos, and giving me your honest feedback is sincerely appreciated. Every time I receive an encouraging note from one of you it propels me to another idea, another burst of energy. Every time you challenge me I am motivated to look at things fresh, consider a new approach, re-imagine, re-work.

The PinchPals first order of pan-dam-demic business was to create another animated video. Being deeply moved by and appreciative of the front line medical workers, the PinchPals “Covid Safety Tips” public service announcement is sensible information: wash your hands, stay home, wear a mask. In my wildest dreams I could not have imagined the video, produced and posted in April, is just as relevant all these months later! Please share, it’s a reminder of what we need to do to get through this!

A second video focused on connection, “Staying in Touch While Keeping Your Distance”, brings a little humor to the reality that we all crave connection, and the PinchPals can help us with that.

Technical Challenges

So much more screen time has been imposed on us. All ages are Zoom learning, it’s the new buzz word. And with screen time comes screen crashes, and website disconnects. The PinchPals were not spared and we spent a significant amount of time re-working the website and social media platforms. Take a look, we have a very new look and very high level of functionality, I also have an incredible webmaster and graphic designer who help manage this. I know the limits of my skill sets, and thank them for their support.

The PinchPals are characters “pinched” from clay, and the Kiln Doctor had to pay a visit as our clay studio had its share of technical difficulties as well.

The PinchPals have been on an unexpected journey, like most small businesses they were hit hard by Covid. Staff could not help in the clay studio because of social distancing requirements. Resources were stretched and we could no longer afford the help of our wonderful animator. I was raised to be resourceful, and know that for me “work”, finding ways to stay connected with the creative side of my brain, sustains me. And to that, 3 new PinchPals art works emerged.

Creative Solutions

“Stay Safe” art work reinforces the fact that at our core we are all the same. Everybody, no matter your race, the country you live in, your religion, all of us were asked to live “safe”, to social distance, to wear masks. No one anywhere has been spared the realities and inconveniences of Covid-19.


“Plan Your Vote” came to me after the widespread racial conflicts over the summer. The PinchPals stay out of politics, but they stand up for what is right. I just could not stop myself from making this piece. It is our responsibility to vote for our beliefs and to put in power leaders who share our beliefs. I do not understand why it took the death of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and so many others to spark the Black Lives Matter movement….all lives matter. During this time a fantastic Blog entry was written by guest Blogger, Emma Springer, who beautifully articulated the importance of “movements”.

Also, during this time I realized the PinchPals can speak to a larger audience if they represented many skin colors. Although the PinchPals had always been “pinched” from red clay it was time they were “pinched” from a variety of clay bodies. I believe at our core we are all the same, however the color of our skin does impact our life’s experience.

This Moment in Time

With the remarkable, fast paced creation of a Covid vaccine there is real hope to beat this disease. My final art work of 2020 was conceived to preserve this moment in time. “A Shot of Hope” will forever remind me of living through a pan-dam-demic.

The covid germ is actually a very sculpturally attractive image, beautiful colors and textures. And the PinchPals patiently wait for their “shot of hope”.

Wishing you and yours a hope-filled, healthy and happy new year as we begin to find our new normal.   Thank you for reading this to the end!



  • Cara Holly Noland
    Posted at 19:06h, 03 January Reply

    Your beautiful artwork will be a reminder for the ages the major issues that faced us in 2020. Thank you for graphically journaling this time, and making something creative and meaningful to help us get through it! You are an inspiration!

  • Charlene Christi Sloan
    Posted at 20:01h, 03 January Reply

    I love how the Pinch Pals are documenting the events of 2020! They are a beautiful and creative reminder of the challenges, and the brights spots of the last 10 months. Thank you for your amazing work and positive outlook; you’re very inspiring!

  • Shona
    Posted at 09:21h, 05 January Reply

    Beautiful art that instigates deep thought into the events of 2020, one of the most memorable years in history. Thanks for your message of kindness.

  • Bonnie
    Posted at 22:05h, 27 January Reply

    Just love the idea of this! Going to charge on!

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