Friday, August 20, 2010


Over a number of years I have had the privilege of teaching at a variety of locations as well as giving workshops. One of my maxims of pottery sanity is to never get too attached to any single pot. Work in a series and if one bites the dust, there are others to work with. I have always found this to be sound and profitable advice.

Well, despite my own best advice and my “zen like” approach to clay, there is periodically a pot, the pot, that I am far more invested in than is healthy. It can be a teabowl, covered jar or what have you, it just speaks a bit louder than others in the series. Such was just the case with a bottle vase I was decorating. In using wax to help define the design, it just didn’t come out the way I wanted it to and it just ruined the pot to my eye.

So what to do, for a day and a half I obsessed on the pot and the decoration that ruined it. Should I fire it, should I scrap it, it is just greenware after all. No, not I, I pick door #3. In what can only be described as a herculean effort to salvage the situation and the pot, I scraped, sanded, reslipped, rewaxed and redecorated what would only take 15 minutes to throw and tool all over again. An hour invested in a pot that on a good day will fetch $40. I have saved the pot and what is life without the occasional quixotic pursuit?