Ceramics is a fulfilling hobby. There are endless components that test one’s skills.
Starting with wedging, the process of making the clay supple, there are unlimited techniques to learn. Whether you like hand building or use the wheel, it’s a challenge that takes practice.
Until this fall, my preference was building all sorts of items on the wheel. The tactile sensation of working the clay on the wheel and the visual affirmation when your product is complete is an amazing feeling. Bowls, mugs, colanders to serve berries, plates, even made a lemon squeezer...the projects are infinite.
Then there is glazing, a science in itself. Choosing a color and combining two glazes takes skill and lots of patience. With luck it turns out as good as you hoped, occasionally better. Then you have a product for all your effort. It is almost a surprise to hear from family and friends that they still use the pieces I gave them.
This spring we had to relocate our studio on the third level of the J. All the equipment we had was destroyed by flood waters. A huge disappointment, but the J knew how important it was for us to have a place to continue ceramics. We did hand building, used coils and pinch pot technique, made boxes with lids, bowls for the Empty Bowl Project and other creative projects. It was a challenge to adjust, but at the end of the sessions there was a feeling of satisfaction from having learned new skills.
But in our ceramic studio, it is not only All About Clay. It’s also joining a diverse group of people, ages, careers and backgrounds. Meeting at least once a week and learning to work as team: helping, complimenting, appreciating, laughing all the while we are each engrossed in our own projects.
This summer we’ll be back in our old studio space in the lower level of the J, home again. Thanks to the J for recreating our “home.” We all look forward to returning.
Personally, I cannot wait.
Interested in trying ceramics or other art class? Learn more.