I’ve just been digging into that excellent article in the Studio Potter that I referenced the other day. As I don’t believe Michael’s importance to the field of American Studio Pottery can be overstated – i’ll quote him at legnth:
So I made the decision that it was crucial to like the pots I was making. I just had to step back and make them, even though they didn’t fit into the way I thought I should work, which was with a potter’s economy, like Warren and I imagine, the Korean folk potters had worked: your experience and your confidence and your directness make the surface and the shape dynamic, and you have the pot right there. It’s kind of built in, joined together; it’s beautiful.
I just determined that I was going to make them look the way I wanted them to look before they went in the kiln. I wasn’t going to fire things that I didn’t believe in. I just had to have a bottom line, some place that I could work toward; I had to make that a real thing for myself. It meant that I had to spend more time on the pots.
~pg 69 the Studio Potter June 2oo6 Volume 34 #2
This sense of commitment to finding ones own voice in the material so wonderfully expresses the challenge I am working thru right now in my own studio. While many of my teachers voices continue to wisper in my ear as I work – I am finding, more and more, that the voice that leads me to make my decisions is coming from someplace deep within – right or wrong.
I’ve just been prepping some bisque and giving myself the entirety of the weekend to glaze (while finalizing a grad school app:(). It’s nice to find more clay in my pots these days – and more clay in the right places. The insides of the pots are beginning to speak with more clarity and self possession. Still working inside my elemental glaze palette – I’m pretty excited about the ideas moving forward w/ process and the slip underpaintings that my glazes will get to work atop. I also treated myself to some supurb Japanese incense which makes blogging that much more enjoyable.