Monday, April 30, 2012

Learning Curves

It's been almost exactly a year since my last post... It's been quite a year and there's been a lot of loss. Some of the best friends I've had both human and canine passed away. It's helped me reflect on the life I'm living... the way I spend "my time".

This quote by Helen Keller was timely: "Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security does not exist in nature..." Sometimes this life as an artisan, artist, crafter (take your pick because I personally feel weightless and unbound to these terms and enjoy playing within each of these "realms") seems very insecure. Well let's face it, it IS insecure... but then I'm reminded that life is insecure. None of us have been given any guarantees, even if/when we "play by the rules".

But I'm jumping ahead, because part of my learning curve in the past year has been trying to figure even what the rules are. To that end, I've been testing glazes and practicing making pots (still well below the 10,000 hour mark).

test tiles for glazes...
Test tiles done!

And I've been pretty happy with some of the results I've had. 

But probably the most successful thing I've done all year is to abandon my expectations and try something   I've never done before... sawdust firing... I was hopeful that I would like the results, but with ceramics, like in life, there are NO guarantees. It is my constant lesson to embrace this and appreciate what is available to me in each moment.

Enter Duncan. 

I was pretty sure that I would wait for at least a year before getting a new dog. But then, suddenly a friend who has a wonderful farm and even more wonderful philosophy of farming has a lovely dog with four puppies and my heart broke and exploded simultaneously... so much for best laid plans. 

Duncan (~ 6 weeks) meeting a bull calf.   (Photo credit Brooke Oland)
And while I'm throwing out my rule about no new dog, I'm abandoning glaze recipes for the unpredictable results of firing pots in garbage cans with sawdust and organic material and I'm really liking the result... It's starting out to be an exciting year!

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