Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Trials by fire

You work on your skill and several years go by.  You get to the point that centering the clay on the spinning wheel goes pretty well, most of the time.  You have learned to wedge the clay well to get all the air pockets out before putting it on the wheel.  The wedging practice has actually transferred to better dough wedging and kneading.

As the clay spins, your hands know how to pull up a nice bowl.  Once in a while, you make a mug or a vase or an urn instead, like the urn that sits quietly awaiting your husband's ashes some day way, way far in the future.


It can be so disappointing to create a great piece, place it in the kiln to be heated to 2000+°F, calmly wait and wait some more for the whole batch to cool, carry it downstairs and carefully glaze and carve, re-fire after carefully packing it inside the kiln for a glaze firingFullSizeRender(1).jpg

only to have the little beauty or one of its neighbors inside the kiln explode, crack or fail some other damned way.  All that work!  All that hope!  Shattered!  With care, that sort of mess doesn't happen often and it is a very good thing.

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