ON BEING A POTTER…After 30 years
I have been working with clay over a time span of 30 years. Clay is of the earth, as am I. It is as magnanimous in its gifts as it is tortuous in its lessons. The love of both brings me continuous joy. It’s a journey you take by yourself. You travel alone, but you are never lonely. Every journey requires some decisions along the way.
For better or worse we are where we are.
You must travel with desire. Work with passion towards the new experience opening up in front of you. When you pick up a new piece of clay and start the wheel, the world disappears. You first focus on centering yourself…then the clay. Every morsel of your energy is expended in finding the form in your mind, then transposing that through your hands to the clay beneath. The fingertips being the heart and soul of the Potter.
It is a sort of meditative state where you are making subtle decisions along the way as your creation takes form. Your mind is taken to a place of bliss, and time is irrelevant. And time stands still.
If I know nothing else, I know that creating is an act of love.
If you do not love what you are creating, it will show. I know it. Do not start if you are not going to give it 100% of your very being. If it is right, your soul will tell you so. Not your mind, Not your best friend. Not some “critic”.
Clay is what drives me, excites me and motivates me. A challenge greets me every time I sit on the wheel, and I revel in it. When throwing I am transported in my head to a place of peace and contentment, from there I am guided.
My relationship with clay is a lifelong one…..until death do us part. Together we have faced disappointment, failure, and loss but also a sense of wellbeing and completion, and indeed great satisfaction as we strive towards that illusive “bowl without ego”.