Monday, 22 April 2013

Happy Hands.

MissM’s been learning pottery as an after school activity for two terms now. She loves the teacher, she loves working with her hands, and she’s creating lovely pieces.

Wooly sheep

Lounge with pillows

Sea Turtle

Pretty obvious what this is

She loves the tactile work. She also enjoys designing and creating something tangible and useful. She often says the feel of the pottery when it’s glazed reminds her of the plates we ate off in Japan when we ate teppenyaki or yakitori – and she’s right.

Japanese crockery is earthen. Some crockery is smooth while others are rippled and rough. You simply can’t use it for Western meals when a knife and fork is needed as the noise of the cutlery across the pottery is akin to nails being scratched down a blackboard (that’s probably a noise of the past these days with electronic white boards in most classrooms)

Some of the Ikebana containers I use in class are traditional pottery. They are rough and tactile, adding another element of nature to the designs. Sensei has bought most of her containers in Japan, or has had then commissioned. There’s several I would love to own, but how many can I own?

I asked MissM’s pottery teacher if she did commission work, thinking she could make a couple for me. She said she did, but why didn’t I come along to class and make them myself.


Today was my first lesson and I loved it!

This simple container caught my attention from Thai Van Man’s work. I love the fact that it’s small and compact for one flower. I asked if this might be a good one to start with and MsA agreed.

I started by rolling out the clay between two guides. Then cut out the desired shape – base and 4 sides.

The cross hatched the sides, and stuck ‘goo’ (wet gluggy clay) along the very edge like cement, and sat the sides on top, blending the joins til they disappeared.

My container is complete.

MsA will fire it this week and next Monday I get to paint and glaze it.

This is my next piece

I’m inspired to see what else I can create tho keeping in mind, when we move we are limited to a set shipment amount. We were just under when we left Japan, and that was due to the very clever and careful packing. Each time we bring something into the house I am very aware that come the time to move onto our next adventure, something might have to be left behind so my choices are always very specific.

Having done decoupage for several years, and realizing that at some point you have enough in your home that in order to keep creating pieces you need to give them away, there's only so much pottery. Bowls and jugs and platters don't do it for me (just yet) so maybe my new hobby will have a use-by date, maybe not .......... 

Here’s to a few new personally created Ikebana containers and new friends,

With friendship

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