monochrome experiment for pottery
When I first signed up for a pottery class in my town I thought it would be exciting and fun to play with clay. But I quickly got frustrated with being a beginner – pots flew off the wheel, glazes came out looking muddy or pale, and everything I made reminded me of my early creations as an eight year old that were relegated to ashtrays by my chain-smoking step-father. You know the ones – clay blobs with a finger-sized hole in the middle.
I was ready to give up. Throw in the shammy. Stick to what I already know. Stop trying to learn new tricks.
And then my teacher Robert Hessler, in his infinite wisdom, told me to narrow my focus: hone my skills and clarify my aesthetic. As a result I am only making black and white pots. How could he have known that this challenge would sing to my monochromatic soul? Don't misunderstand me, I love color – just in measure. Especially in my own home where too much color feels like clutter. And clutter makes me edgy. Just ask my husband who would love me to stop "pile-shifting." But this is way off topic.
I glazed my first black and white "experiment" on a shallow slab pot. And it looks really great. Which made me realize that limitations are good for me – I have to dig deeper into what is possible with less at hand. Which leads to more discovery. And hopefully to better looking pots.