Monday 13 April 2015

Back to work in a Changed world

After a prolonged time away I am back in the workshop, rescuing my somewhat mouldy pots. I got the batch of 3D pictures sprayed with coloured slips over weekend and they are now drying slowly under polythene. 

This one is Aesop's Fable 'The Fox and Stork'.

The first version was a plate which was sold at the preview of the Spring Fling exhibition at The McGill Duncan Gallery.

I did like these when they were still in the plain damp terracotta red clay, but once the colours are fired I think/hope they will come back to life.

The last 6 weeks or so have been sad yet special ones. We lost our dear Father after a short illness. He was 89 and had lived a full life. He was really remarkably fit right up until the last year or so. 

He was a regular a visitor to Potfest in the Park, I don't think he ever missed it. The last time he undertook a long drive by himself was to go to Potfest 2014. He loved to come and see the show, meet his pottery friends and see what I had been making for it. Often to my embarrassment he would declare to be my biggest fan! 

He was a GP by profession, but also a fine woodworker.  He always kept his hands busy. It was in his workshop in the cellar, with the freedom to use his tools and under his gentle encouragement, that I owe my love of making. As Len McDermid said in his tribute: 

                                               'He constructed and he invented.
                                                He made things and he mended things. 
                                                He mended people and he made people'. 

Here is Father making a canoe. He made many boats, and taught us all seamanship.

At Potfest 2013

80th Birthday cake

Tapestries kept his hands constantly busy, especially in later years.

89th Birthday at the Halterburn near Yetholm in September.  Many happy family days were spent making dams here.

Life has changed for me, but my Father will live on in everything I make.


  1. The 3D pictures are quite amazing. I met your Dad briefly last year at Potfest and it was very clear then what a sweet gentleman he was, I remember him taking great delight in James Hake's little baby, it was lovely to see. We were really sorry to hear he had passed away and our thoughts have been with you. My Dad too was a practical man(he's in a care home now and not really with us any more), he was also a woodworker. I know that had it not been for that influence, that I wouldn't be doing what I do, we are lucky indeed to be the offspring of makers and as you so rightly say, they live on in everything we make. See you very soon, sending our love

  2. He always will be in your thoughts . . . wonderful

  3. Thank you Doug, I am so glad that you met him albeit briefly. I would like to have met your Dad too, (it sounds as though they would have got on together). We are lucky indeed.