Friday, January 16, 2009

Winter Time and the Livin's Easy (What?!?)

So, once again the post holidays have been spent at home and out of the studio. It seems like every year for the past little bit, I have the hardest time making it back into the work cycle. Although, it has been nice catching up on some household projects (finished assembling and installing some bathroom drawers that were a Valentines' Day treat...2008) and hanging out with my little boy Nolan, pups Sambuka and Neaka, and honey Kara. And being in the studio isn't everything, right? Regardless, I have a pretty good line up of shows starting in March, so I'd best get busy.

I did start back teaching a couple of weeks ago. I have a Cups class and a Narrative Vessels class at Claymakers in Durham, NC and a much anticipated cone 6 Soda Firing class (it filled in a manner of hours of registration opening!) at the Artscenter in Carrboro, NC. The Cups class is full, and I have a great deal of enthusiasm for this class because I love making cups, I've submitted a Cups class proposal for a couple of years now with no takers and I feel like they are taken for granted and given a Beginner's project rep. Cups can be very sophisticated functional and aesthetic objects and its nice to have 12 students focusing their attention on such humble forms. We are starting off with mugs and steins (handled) and are moving into tumblers and "unomis" (handleless), followed by goblets (assembled) and teacups and saucers (sets) if time allows.

The Narrative Vessels class is on Saturday mornings, which usually prove to be more laid back classes. Basically, the class is a flurry of surface techniques, including sgraffito, uber-sgraffito, slip inlay, pushing out and pushing in forms, brushing, terra sig, glaze layering and resists, etc. My work almost always involves some aspect of a story or tell a tale beyond simply being pottery, but I am a little nervous about the developing narrative aspect of the class, because I usually find my way through my stories as I work on a piece. Sorry students! Hope you're okay with the hide and watch approach to storytelling.

So, I have been in ceramics studios for the last little bit, just not my own. The classes are good and it is good to be back in teaching mode. We'll see how my enthusiasm waxes or wanes when I'm at full steam in my own studio.


  1. Hey Ronan, the classes sound great. I should come and take that Narrative class. What's uber-sgraffito?

    Been meaning to write you back and let you know that last glaze you sent was the exact one that Amy has used a lot. So it's what we went with. Thanks for your help!

  2. Here, Here to making cups! I love to make cups! That class sounds great. I wish I could generate some interest in that as well here at Clayworks. Maybe I'll put in a request to try something like that!