Monday, 9 June 2014

Art- A Balancing Act

I am writing a blog entry….a bit of a shock isn't it?

Well, life is very full at present. 
 Even a simple blog entry is difficult to fit in.

I spent from mid April until mid May at the wheel
working and researching for my uni work.
I was trying to improve my skill in making two forms,
a bottle form and a spherical shape that could be used 
for a tea pot, blossom jar or a lidded pot.

The following photos give some idea of my process. 
Pots were made and grown into full forms.
Some collapsed, were saved and rebuilt. 
Others discarded and recycled 
and some were OK and completed.
It has been quite a learning curve, looking 
at how to create a balanced work in structure and composition.

My main aim was to have time with my hands in clay. 
There is nothing that helps more in understanding 
and developing a skill than to practice.

So that is what I have been doing.



                                                 I have only had bisque firings on these at this stage
                                                 as I am still busy making in the hope of doing
                                                some raku and a pit firing while the weather is cool.

                                                My mind keeps thinking about how,when
                                                where ,what and if I can build a wood kiln here.
                                                My heart is yearning to make reduction ware
                                                and to use fire in my making.

                                                 I was disappointed to not be able to make it to
                                                 the wood firing convention, this May at Mystery Bay,
                                                 but there is only so far that one person can spread herself.

                                               In mid May I started Sandy Lockwoods
                                                        Jars and Bottles workshop
                                               it will soon be finished and I will
                                            miss having time with this lovely group of women.

                                            I have had several revelations in my throwing
                                            technique while doing this workshop.
                                            I can't say how great it has been for me to go to
                                            several different teachers over the last few years
                                            (as well as in my youth).
                                             Each teacher has been brilliant and I have learned
                                            something important from each of them and
                                              I am slowly putting it all together into
                                             my own way of making.

                                           I have been busy following on with my
                                             bottle forms in Sandy's workshop.

and enjoying the sunset as a drive home.

But life is not just about ceramics for me.

It is a two hour drive to Sandy Lockwood's Pottery 
in the Southern Highlands,
 so I leave early and can practice my singing on the way.
That gives me four hours of singing practice, 
(if I am feeling strong) 
otherwise I indulge in glorious and inspiring music.

                                             Then there is the garden which is needing attention.
                                                 I managed to pick up lots of cheap horse manure 
                                        on my trek south last week and I will spend some time 
                                                    setting the garden in order this week.

                                              I have also been working on some sets of cards
                                              which I have collaged, printed and stitched.

Inspiration is always important. 
A wonderful demonstration and presentation 
from Euan Craig who was visiting from Japan 
was a delightful element to squeeze into my June.

                                                    One technique Euan uses to decorate
                                                  his work is a traditional Japanese technique
                                                  of rolling these beautiful hand made ropes
                                                  over the surface of his pots.
                                                                       Just delightful.

I brought home one of his pots.
This one is decorated with chattering 
rather than the rope.

I love the black glaze detail on the foot.

Then we come to the most important part of my life….
My family.

Those specials are my inspiration
and my deepest love in life.

So, making art with my grandchildren, 

and hearing about what my children and my stepson 
are thinking about and doing fills me with cheer.


                                                     You see, it is all a balancing act.
                                                     I  practice my life juggling….
                                                     a bit of this and a bit of that…...
                                                     and I hope that happiness and beauty
                                                     will win in the end and if not
                                                     that I will learn things along the road
                                                     to help me deal any unforeseen difficulty.