July 18, 2011 § 2 Comments
Last week, I had the opportunity to visit the V & A’s ceramics collection again. It is obviously a totally different experience going round now that I know a small amount about throwing. This exquisite cup, below, with walls thrown so thin that they are translucent, was made during the Tang Dynasty in China (600-700). It is so fine, so delicate and so tiny that I find it hard to believe that it has survived for over 1000 years.
While in the V & A, I made the decision to buy the wheel for the workshop in my cellar. This was Thursday: I rang CTM Potters Supplies in Doncaster, ordered the wheel (which happened to be in their Exeter branch) and it was delivered by Friday lunchtime. My friend, Mike, helped me manoeuver it into the cellar.
Piece by piece the pottery adventure is coming together. I do need a kiln but, as for the moment I am concentrating on increasing my skill level rather than focussing on the end product, I can wait a while and spend a little time getting the right one. And I have built my ware shelves, which will function perfectly well. I built them with the intention of having eight shelves (6′ x 18″) but as I was constructing them I realised that three of them would take some filling, so I left it at that for the time being.
I sat down at the wheel for the first time on Sunday and threw for a couple of hours. It felt like I was in seventh heaven, pure joy. And I threw all day today.
I hadn’t thrown for something like three weeks and so I was all over the place, but that’s fine. I will be throwing all of tomorrow and Wednesday, too; I can’t wait to see what happens over those days and how the form progresses (I plan to concentrate on the beaker shape above). This is what is so exciting, the anticipation of hours and hours spent at the wheel over the coming weeks and months, and watching how my skill level develops.
This is where the hard work begins.