Many years ago, after high school, I took my first pottery class. It was called Stoneware Pottery I. I was in the class with about fifteen other people. After a tour of the studio, we were each seated at a pottery wheel. Think about Demi Moore in the movie Ghost. That's what a pottery wheel looks like. The smooth and artistic shapes she made at the wheel are what you're supposed to do with your hands. Folks- it's not that easy! Clay has a mind of its own and the ability to dance all over the place.
My first attempts were comical. I really wanted to learn this and I wanted help from the instructor. She was very kind, but fifteen newbies at the wheels were a lot for her to handle. Some folks took to it like the saying of ducks taking to water. Others, like your truly, struggled. Walking requires extreme coordination for some of us! I kept trying to ask her things and get some help. She finally asked me to step away from the wheel to come with her and get some clay. She told me to take some clay and go sit in another area of the studio. Time out? I wasn't asking any more questions than the others who weren't getting it, but she felt a need to move me. She gave me some clay and told me to familiarize myself with it and make something. At that point she left for a very long time and dealt with the others at the wheel. When she returned she found this:
This is the unicorn after he had been glazed and fired.
close up of his face
The instructor had a surprised look on her face as she said, "Why in the world would you ever want to throw pots when you can do that?" The remainder of the semester, I happily sculpted in clay. Many other creatures, and hand built trays were created.
"Little Brother" unicorn was the next thing I made. I
wasn't very good at glazing, but I think he has a comfortable, "funky" look.
A few years ago, I returned to the same art center and took basic pottery. I was able to do the wheel much better, but it was nasty on my lower back, so I ended up back in my old routine. This time, there wasn't a unicorn in sight. I made lots of fun and functional thing and loved my "me time". After three semester, it became too impractical for me to travel a distance and spend a lot of money on a class. I decided to put that money towards my own equipment. Regretfully, other things took priority, but I hope to one day play in clay again.
Today I'm linking to Katherine's Corner.