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Award-winning Minnesota artist unites playful illustrations and fine porcelain carvings in the historic city of Jingdezhen, China.
52 backers pledged $8,137 to help bring this project to life.
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  About

My name is Blayze Buseth. I am a potter, sculptor, and designer. This year I was selected for a three-month International Artist Residency in Jingdezhen, China, through the Pottery Workshop. 

Jingdezhen has been the center of Chinese porcelain production since the 1400s. The Pottery Workshop program provides housing, modern facilities to work in, hundreds of master artisans to work with in the community and bilingual staff!

While in Jingdezhen I will be creating a new body of work I call The Artifacts. The Artifacts include three vessels inspired by ancient artifacts from around the world. This work includes the Sacred Bowl, Ambient Vase, and Robed Vase which will be created out of the famous Jingdezhen porcelain. 

The entire experience is going to be shared through digital illustrations of Tom’s Adventure. 

Illustration #1 "A Foreign land"
Illustration #1 "A Foreign land"

 Tom, a Balloon Guy, sits before his adventure to a foreign land. Here he will meet the great masters, encounter the artifacts, and experience the secrets of this unknown place.

Each stage of Tom’s journey will be revealed as a story card. The first two story cards are depicted “A Foreign Land” and “The Artifact!” The rest of Tom’s story will be revealed and formed throughout his adventure. 

Illustration #1, #2, and (Locked) Story
Illustration #1, #2, and (Locked) Story

That's where you can come in:  

Become a backer. With your help as a backer, we will create The Artifacts in fine china porcelain and bring Tom's story to life.

Rewards

Rewards include high-quality collectible postcards, original art prints, fine porcelain art and more!

Backing any rewards guarantees you all 10 stages of Tom's Adventure.

 
Post Card Bundle

Receive Tom's whole adventure in 4x6 travel postcards. 

4x6 Travel Postcards
4x6 Travel Postcards

Tom's Adventure T-Shirt!

Tom holding the sacred artifacts. Written in Chinese characters reads "Tom's Adventure".

Men's or Women's T-Shirt
Men's or Women's T-Shirt

Tom Momento

This reward is a small carving of Tom. It will be a symbol of Tom's Adventure. Each piece is finished in a traditional Chinese celadon glaze. These mementos will come signed and numbered!

The Artifacts 

Throughout Tom's Adventure he will discover The Artifacts. These creations are cherished by the balloon guys. They are enchanting vessels that give life energy to guardians of these relics.  

1. (Artifact) Sacred Bowl - China

First Artifact: The precious vessel held by Tom.  This original design is a minimalistic bowl finished in fine china porcelain and a traditional clear glaze. Each piece has my eternal flame logo carved and centered on the bottom. This piece is a spectacular artisan bowl.

 2. (Artifact) Ambient Vase - India

Second Artifact: Tom's Adventure has led him to an enchanting vessel! This is one of the prized artifacts found by Tom. It represents the continued spring of life and is said to emit a wonderful aura.

3. (Artifact) Robed Vase - Greece

Third Artifact: The sacred temple treasure. Through this vessel, Tom has fathomed the secrets of this ancient world.

Tom's Adventure
Tom's Adventure

Why Help Tom? 

Tom is a symbol of the adventurer. He comes from a series, "The Playful World," I created when I was a boy.  In this series, these cartoons run wild and get into all sorts of mischief.  Thanks to tremendous encouragement, I am bringing these characters back to share and assist in this adventure to China.

On August 29, I leave for China and arrive in Shanghai. After three days I will take a train to Jingdezhen. Here I will be studying historic pottery, creating porcelain art, and most importantly creating the story of Tom's Adventure.  Throughout my stay, I will be sharing updates through Kickstarter and revealing Tom's Adventure.

All Pledges go towards the costs of the residency.

  • 90 days as a resident at The Pottery Workshop will cost me about $4500 (This includes room & board, studio access, and meals Monday -Friday)
  • Materials and firings will cost $600
  • I have purchased my plane ticket but additional travel expenses come to about $400 

If I receive extra money from pledges I will use that towards additional materials which will greatly increase my capabilities in China.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions about backing my and Tom's journey. Thank you for your support of myself and my work.

Credit

Photography - Daniel Knight - Shanti Knight

Partner - Desiree Logan 

Project Editors - Julia Lundeen, Gary Mathiesen, Bill Adams.

Music - https://icons8.com/license

Risks and challenges

Risks and Challenges
• In 2013 I studied with West Virginia University in China. I have been guided through the creating process, shipping, customs, and general welfare.
• I will have the assistance of bilingual staff to help me through the language barrier.
• I will post updates detailing my experience in China on a blog on my website.
• If order quantities become more than anticipated I have developed a plan to expand.
•Backer rewards will be shipped out after I return home from China.
•Pottery vessels will be shipped back to the USA before I ship them to my backers.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Digital Postcard Bundle!

    Receive all 10 of Tom's Illustrations through a digital format. This gives you access to all of Tom's updates!

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    4 backers
    $

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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    Post Card Bundle Pack!

    Receive Tom's Story in standard 4x6 postcards! Keep them for yourself or send them to friends!

    Includes:
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    4 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Tom T Shirt!

    Tom dancing with the Artifacts. This special edition shirt reads "Tom's Adventure in Chinese.

    Includes:
    • Post Card Bundle Pack!
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    6 backers
    $

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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Tom Starter Pack!

    A small carving of Tom on Fine China. Each memento is hand-signed and numbered! Includes a Tom t-shirt and postcard bundle pack.

    Includes:
    • Tom Memento
    • Tom T-Shirt!
    • Post Card Bundle Pack!
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 7 backers
    $

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    The Adventurer

    First artifact. A fine handmade bowl found by Tom! This original design is a simple minimalistic bowl finished in fine China porcelain and a traditional clear glaze.

    *** All pottery designed by Blayze Buseth

    It also includes Tom Memento, Tom T-shirt, and a postcard bundle.

    You will also receive a shoutout after the Kickstarter Campaign!

    Includes:
    • (Artifact1) Sacred Bowl
    • Tom Memento
    • Tom T-Shirt!
    • Post Card Bundle Pack!
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 7 backers
    $

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    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    18x24 Signed Giclee Print!

    High-quality print of "A Foreign Land" The Opening photo for Tom's Adventure. Each comes numbered and signed by the artist. Printed on a Giclee canvas This is ready for your art collection!

    Includes:
    • Tom Memento
    • Post Card Bundle Pack!
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 3 backers
    $

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Cosmic Discovery

    Second Artifact. Tom's adventure has led him to an enchanting vessel! This is one of the prized artifacts found by Tom. It represents the continued spring of life and is said to emit a wonderful aura.

    ***All pottery designed by Blayze Buseth

    Includes Tom Memento, Tom t-shirt, and postcard bundle!

    You also receive a shoutout after the campaign and throughout the adventure!

    Includes:
    • (Artifact2) Ambient Vase
    • Tom Memento
    • Tom T-Shirt!
    • Post Card Bundle Pack!
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    $

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    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $900 or more About $900

    Temple Treasure

    Tom Discovered the 3rd Artifact and now it's yours. This skillfully crafted vase features hand-carved drapery and handles inspired from the golden spiral or Fibonacci Sequence. It is designed and crafted in fine China porcelain. Each vase comes hand-signed.

    ***All pottery designed by Blayze Buseth

    Includes Tom Memento, Tom t-shirt, and postcard bundle.

    You will also receive a shoutout after the campaign!

    Includes:
    • (Artifact3) Robed Vase
    • Tom Memento
    • Tom T-Shirt!
    • Post Card Bundle Pack!
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 1 backer
    $

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    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    VIP

    Collectors and Believers of "A Playful World"

    Includes:
    • (Artifact3) Robed Vase
    • (Artifact2) Ambient Vase
    • (Artifact1) Sacred Bowl
    • 18x24 Signed Print of "A Foreign land"
    • Tom Memento
    • Tom T-Shirt!
    • Post Card Bundle Pack!
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 1 backer
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  10. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    Early Bird: Tom T-Shirt!

    Includes:
    • Post Card Bundle Pack!
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 4 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.
  11. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $85 or more About $85

    Early Bird: Tom Starter Pack!

    A small carving of Tom on Fine China. It will be a symbol of Tom's Adventure. This special memento will be finished in the famous Celadon Glaze. Each memento is hand-signed and numbered!

    Includes:
    • Tom Memento
    • Tom T-Shirt!
    • Post Card Bundle Pack!
    • "The Artifact!" - 4x6 Postcard
    • 8 Additional Story Postcards!
    • "A Foreign Land" - 4x6 Postcard
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 2 backers
    $

    By pledging you agree to Kickstarter's Terms of Use, Privacy Policy, and Cookie Policy.

    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

    Learn more about accountability.

Funding period

- (29 days)