I was delighted to be asked to participate in a blog hop inspired by ‘Calm’; it’s strange how something takes over your thoughts but since Veronica Roth asked me to participate I’ve longed for Friday, so much so I decided the whole weekend would be mine, and devoted to ‘calm’.
I got up early and dealt with emails, parcels, housework etc, then I rushed out to the studio. I had a plan of action, what could be more calming than playing with mud. I have a slab of Jim Robison clay which I’ve never used before, I do drool over Jim’s work, and regret not having taken a course when I lived in Yorkshire, but I have his book, which provides me with inspiration.
Before going any further, let me remind you I’m a porcelain painter, not a potter, I’m just beginning to find my way into the workings of clay, but sometimes naivety is a blessing, or in other words ignorance is bliss. So the clay came out, but I found this heavily grogged clay hard to roll, my dear OH came to the rescue and got it rolled out for me. So at that moment in time calm wasn’t in the foremost of my thoughts.
Time for a lunch break with 10 minutes meditation which I thought would help, but no still mind, all I could think about was what I wanted to make so I abandoned the idea and set to work. Eventually, I got a bowl shape , using a new piece of highly technical equipment, a pounce made from a sock filled with a plastic bag full of sand. Now to make the top part of my vision, I had to take over wedging and rolling the clay and I’m sure I will suffer with my hands but I did finally go to that place where I was totally lost in my creation, and yes, I felt very calm indeed.
I used ‘Ella’s doily’, to add an imprint into the clay, I had to think on my feet how to form the top as I wanted it slightly domed, a large platter and some foam did the trick.
Now it was time to rest and let the clay firm up, while I watched the birds on the feeders, then I rolled some lovely soft clay to make tiles for tomorrows plan.
As I have said I’m just learning clay processes, and basically it’s guesswork, but there is a critical time period to assemble the piece, the clay has to be firmed up enough to hold it’s shape but soft enough to join together, I took a deep breath and turned out the bowl
I did eventually find calm but there was a little storm first of all, that’s how it goes, no Yin without Yang. I’m looking forward to tomorrow and another day of calm , now I’m going to look at everyone’s day of calm over on Veronica’s blog .