Sunday, April 15, 2012

A case of the beautiful blues/ Michele Michael

Left: Photography: Philip Ficks, Right Portrait of Michele

Photography: Jennifer Causey

Photography: Jennifer Causey

Collection for Milk Farm Road Heather Chontos' online store

The vases Michele created for West Elm available online now

More Elephant Ceramics silhouettes available at West Elm 

Photography: Philip Ficks, Left: Bowl in Layers of Blue, Right: Cheeseboard, Platters and Bowls in White

Photography: Philip Ficks, Left: Cheeseboards in Dark Turquoise on Brown Stoneware,
Right: Platters and Serving Bowls in Oatmeal

Photography: Philip Ficks, Left: Vases in white, Right: Platter in Ocean Blue

From LishuTulip Photography: Jennifer Causey

Photography: Philip Ficks

It's very exciting when you see someone change careers, or perhaps in this case side step and realize a different journey of creativity to follow a passion or a dream, it's exactly what Michele Michael did. When I moved to NYC some years ago, Michele at the top of her game worked with me in particular on many stories and covers as a Freelance Prop Stylist for Real Simple, bringing her distinctive stamp to every project we worked on. It was where we were first introduced. However even though high in demand across the board for many clients, Michele decided to change sails. 

When Michele retired from Prop, Interior and Tabletop Styling to open Elephant Props, it was obvious her focus had changed direction, Her prop house seemed like an instant pop up of carefully curated wonderfulness, A place you could go that was edited, clean and thought out, further more when she began to display and rent a fabulous line of her own ceramics through the prop house, It was obvious she was very busy with life after Styling. 

Spending time between Maine and Red Hook, Brooklyn with her partner Patrick, who is also a very talented artist in his own right. Michele used the inspiration of their Maine experience to develop the range of ceramics, with a linen/burlap like texture with beautiful glazes largely in whites, blues and turquoises. The forms have an organic quality and range from vases, platters, bowls, plate’s and serving spoon’s, they photograph beautifully and have been featured in many publications around the globe. I try and use them all the time in my shoots.

Catching the attention of the folks at West Elm, Michele was asked recently to produce in collaboration a range of vases and it's currently in store and online. There are 4 silhouettes finished in her trademark blue. I am sure it will be a relationship that continues in the future, I look forward to seeing the range expand. In the meantime, Michele has her website Elephant Ceramics where if you are quick you can secure a one off design produced by hand in one of her studios.

Philip Ficks is a very talented Photographer that like me in another life had another career as an Art Director, like Michele he has also very bravely taken the leap to another medium and I had the pleasure of working with him the last two weeks for Target, he photographs most of Michele's ceramics, most of these images here are images shot for promotional purposes. Philip, like Michele and I also worked at Real Simple, it so great to see both Michele and Philip embracing new horizons and shaking it up with such vigor and talent. Michele and Philip have been working on a new range of images, stay tuned for those, In the meantime, I hope you enjoy these as much as I do.  


  1. Thank you for this really amazing write-up, Marcus! You are a sweetheart!
    I LOVE your blog. XO

  2. Fun to read how things got started. Michele's work is wonderful. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Congratulations on the 'career side-step' Michele, the trademark blue is looking amazing!

  4. Thank you for "the look" in at Michele. My wife and I know Michele and Patrick from the Maine end of their existence and much enjoy having a look at what's going on with them down in the big city.