Monday, September 22, 2014

It's not easy being green

 I'm coming off the past month of having to work 5 days a week at the school, to find that working my 3 days a week there does leave me some time to get back in the studio.

I'm glazing.
We're glazing.

I started off the end of the week, my days at home, by digging through the tiles, pulling them out, waxing and starting the process of laying in the glazes.

This is familiar, I do know how to do this.
Then on Friday we planned, waxed and got ready for the gas kiln.
Glazes were mixed, pots waxed.
Then Sunday it was glaze most of the day.

Then today I got in the car, drove away and went to teach.

This is a strange, interesting and wonderful time for me.
I am conflicted and, yet, satisfied.
I feel as if I am sleep walking, dreaming, I have to ask myself, where is the life you use to lead?

I miss the rhythm of my own studio, marching to my own tune, wandering through my own timeline.
When I am at school my role is different, not unfamiliar, just different.
I set up timelines for the students, load and unload kilns, check glazes, order supplies.

The same but different.

I hope, as we move along, I can give the students that sense of studio time.
It's not all about the wheel, it is about all the other things that can happen in a day.
You load and unload your kilns, order your supplies, mix your glazes, wax, glaze, load.
unload, sand, price, and, if you are lucky, sell.

What happens when you step out of the safety of the classroom?
How do you manage your time,
How will you set up your own rhythm?

Almost daily I see the light bulbs going off in the students. Click, I got this, click, this is working. Click, click, click.
There are days as I walk past each one I see improvements happening, like fireworks lighting up the sky.
Boom! It truly amazes me to be a part of this.

So maybe this time of change has come at a time for me that I can enjoy what is happening, this change in my own work patterns. There was a time that giving up the time would not have been an option for me.
I know that I will always make pots, that is a given. I am just waiting to see what changes this makes to my own work and what I will do next.
I'm waiting for my own light blub moment, Boom!

Or, maybe, like this frog I will just sit quietly watching the world go past me, waiting for the night,waiting to slip off and do what frogs do......boom!

Saturday, September 13, 2014

There should be pictures

I am living through pictures that I have taken last summer of flowers, pottery, butterflies,the studio,and the farm, they all slide past me in an arrangement of space and time.
Oh, yeah where does that time go?

I am still burning the highway between me and the school as I fill the gaps left open by my co-teacher, who sadly, will not be joining me this semester. She is ill, very ill and we can only wait and hope that they find out what is wrong and make her better.

After the past month I turned to fellow potters who I know and asked, what are you doing? Could you find some time to teach a class? I feel very fortunate to have had the first two I asked say yes.
Thank you, thank you, thank you.
This is going to not only help me, but give the students a fresh outlook on what they are doing. Three days is good for me. I could even do another if I had to, but day 5, I am barely there. For the good of all of us, it is better to get the others in place.
I feel good about being part of a team that is going to work at giving the students the best we can.

On the home front as I played MIA in the studio Mark flat out filled a ware cart with pots. There are many of them drying now so we can work through the bisque kiln next and really think about glazing and firing.

It is not easy for him to take both loads while I am gone and the guy has worked like a mad man this past week.

Pitchers, mugs, oil lamps, lamp bases, crocks. He is one busy potter.

Pictures, live in the past with me for now, it's not a bad place to be.

Recent mugs who are looking for homes, except the one in the back middle, it is going to live with someone else soon.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014


I'm here, really I am, as the trolls have taken notice of my absents and splattered spam inside my comments.
The one thing I did not count on when I started this blog was that the trolls that would come as soon as they think you are gone.
I came in yesterday and did some cleaning up and changed my password.
Maybe that will slow things down.
That WWW can be a torturous place.
We love and hate it.

I have been teaching.
I had a call the first week I went back that my co-teacher needed surgery and could I fill in for her? Of, course I could. I did two weeks taking all 5 days, with Friday running a 10 1/2 hour day. When I finished last week I felt run over by a low flying plane.
Maybe I should have started this 10 years ago!

I'm learning the ropes along with the students, clay mixing, ordering supplies, shuffling through the right paper work. It is an endless stream of something. And yet, I go back.
It is fun watching the wheels turn as a student gets it. The light goes on, the brain and hands work together. The clay comes off the wheel as something worth exploring.

I have students who are working on the multiplies of 30's. Mugs, bowls, candlesticks, pitchers, are starting to grow like mushrooms around the room. Taking shape and voice. I ask the students not only for shape but ask them to explore what they want to say as they shape the clay.
Who are you?

I can't say I have hit a wall yet as I watch things unfold.
I can say I wake up bleary eyed and wondering what I have done to myself.....
Then I just pick it up and go.
I still love the morning drive as that time to just think as I travel the back-roads from here to there.
Reflections on them, me and who and what and where...
This clay is a crazy ride.

 I'm looking forward to being in our studio tomorrow to get the cobwebs out of the building.
Spiders also know when you are not around.