Sunday, January 31, 2010

The Sanders try their hands at pottery

Friday our friends John and Jeanette helped me fill a dream - to throw a pot on a wheel.

Graham and I drove out to Eggs and Bacon Bay and had a 3 hour private lesson with Ian, a potter who apprenticed with a Japanese master and has been a commercial potter for 30 years. It was brilliant.

As expected Graham was very good at it and to my delight, so was I. The whole experience was terrific on a whole lot of levels. The feel of the clay in my hands, silky yet firm. The strength needed to work the clay - after 3 hours my fingers were tired, the edge of my hand that lent on the potters wheel was tender and my back was achy. The concentration required to do the moves as we were shown was fierce and we were excited when the light bulb went on as we understood what we were doing as we progressed through our lesson. It also came together as we watched Ian make a pot in less than 2 minutes.

Ian was enthusiastic and complimentary about our efforts and Graham and I had a ball. We learned the techniques Ian had been taught and practiced making cylinders which were then cut down the centre and examine and discuss the base and wall thickness and quality. It's way more physical than I had imagined. Ian will be giving classes soon and I'm sure we'll sign up.