Friday 13 May 2011

Dead Birds and Deadlines

I don’t know where the last three weeks went. I have done a fair bit of throwing, and the stock shelves are filling up though I could still do with more time on the wheel making the popular lines such as mugs and jugs. But my mind has been more occupied with the ‘Ancient Mariner'.

I have put in a fair amount of time into this project, at times perhaps rather indulgent, but I was really enjoying myself.

Last Saturday the deadline loomed loud and clear and I had to pull out of a planned hill walk with friends to knuckle down and finish off the glazing. The kiln HAD to be packed that evening. As I listened to some torrential downpours hammering on the roof I decided that maybe glazing in a cosy workshop with some good music was the better option anyway.

I was a bit nervous about opening the kiln this week, sometimes I have a quick peek last thing at night when it is nearly, but not QUITE cool enough. But no, I waited, not wanting to have bad dreams. One of Hannah’s pottery films from her excellent ‘Pottery Porn’ film night last week was about Gwyn Hanssen Pigott. At one point this wonderful elderly lady announces, (with a smile), that - ‘Actually, making pots is quite stressful...GLAZING them is stressful, PACKING the kiln is stressful.....FIRING them is stressful.... and OPENING the kiln is stressful’. Oh how we love making pots really, but I did think of her words on Wednesday.

And thankfully I am pretty pleased this time. I seem to have sorted out the somewhat drab finish of the mark one of the ‘Coleridge candle boats’. Rubbing slips into the faces has lifted them and brought out the expressions just the way I had hoped.

I had a customer today (who bought my snakes and ladders low stool for a ruby wedding present. Happily entwined snakes: ups and downs of married life, all deliciously symbolic.) She was a painter, and most enthusiastic about her work. ‘I am worried that I don’t have enough time left in my life to paint all I want to’, she said. I knew what she meant, I often have that feeling myself.


  1. how cool they all made it.. phew!!! their faces really pop too :))

  2. Your work is so incredibly fabulous! I am so glad to see how wonderfully these pieces have turned out.
    Connie Norman