Saturday, September 12, 2009

Two Degrees of Separation

Things are beginning to get rolling in the fabrication shop/studio. The two forty volt outlet got hooked up and the kiln is on line.
It's been three years since I've done any serious work and some ideas have started to percolate to the surface.
It's not like I haven't had any time, it's just that eBay, the internet, and USA network are evil.
Speaking of evil, Evil Hoku comes over to start things off. He hasn't touched clay since his BFA (Bachelors of Fine Arts) graduation show which was a year before mine.
I break out the Jeff Eisler Wheel (Jeff, I hope you are getting tasty barrels wherever you are), and Evil Hoku begins to work about three or four pounds of clay.

He's doing well. Working on the potters wheel is like riding a bike; you never really forget how, and it's all about making something spin in a circle.

Now what? Evil Hoku asks. This is how I felt like last year when I first started riding again. Okay, I can ride around without falling down, now what?
Evil Hoku goes with the old standby: the Winnie the Pooh Honey Jar.

Most beginners, when working on the potters wheel find early that it's not good to overwork the clay: there is a definite time to stop.
Evil Hoku is not a beginner. He decides to stop.

Well done! For a photography major.
Evil Hoku and I both hold BFA degrees. His just happens to be in a flat and lifeless medium called photography. I graduated with the three dimensional, avant-garde artists in the sculpture department. I originally hoped to take my degree in ceramics, but switched over to the sculpture department for reasons I will not get into.
Your turn, Evil Hoku says.
Being older than Evil Hoku makes me wiser. I haven't worked on the wheel in so long, I am afraid he's shown me up! I respectfully defer to another day.
Little does Evil Hoku know, but his stuff will be the test pieces for when I fire up the kiln. I mean, I wasn't going to use my stuff in the first firing!
Not that anything could go wrong don't you know.
The sad thing about art students is that only a few get to continue on after graduation. The realities of life take precedent and soon one finds there simply is not enough time to devote to one's passions. You must make choices.
In my case it was not about time, it was about the process. Ceramics is done in stages, and you need the equipment to complete it.
After all this time off, I hope this is the start of a new journey.
I thought it ironic that Evil Hoku was the one working the clay and I was the one taking pictures.
While we hold degrees in different mediums, there's not that much separation in what we do.

No comments: