It’s true. Sometimes I make things that just turn out to be butt ugly (not that I’ve ever seen any really ugly butts …), and these pieces kind of hang around until I get around to taking the hammer to them. I have them on my work table by my desk and I walk by them every day, not on purpose, it’s just turned out that way. Thing is, other people walk by them too and they pick them up and tell me they’d be good for this or that, and that they deserve another chance.
This kind of goes to show you that butt ugly is in the eyes of the beholder, but I read a wonderful piece on Leonard Cohen today, talking about the creative process. Apparently he’s got lots of lyrics for songs or poems that don’t see the light of day. If I read them, I’d probably think they were fantastic (and very deep, of course. After all it is Leonard Cohen.). But it’s his critical ear or eye that his work has to appeal to, and that’s the crux of it. His muse may be hiding in the Tower of Song, mine perhaps in a box of clay …
I like to muck about, slap some clay around, or throw it … try out new clays, some new glazes, and oh, brother … can that make a mess! The clean up is not always fun. Sometimes there’s glaze all over newly washed kiln shelves, sometimes there’s a red iron oxide spill (add water and it looks like you’ve murdered someone in the studio), sometimes even the dog can’t watch. I presume it’s because I’m not ‘there’ yet. Have a general idea about where ‘there’ might be … but it’s pretty ellusive!
In the meantime, I’m gathering up all of the rejects today. They’re going into a box and heading out to the back forty. In 3000 years someone will dig them up and wonder what period they were influenced by. Maybe I should leave a note with them (written on a clay tablet of course) … “these humble shards were experiments that led to other things.” It’s easy to make perfect pots. Don’t try anything new.
On another note, my yard seems to be filled with Blue Jays. I thought they didn’t migrate, but if that’s the case the locals have called in all of the relatives. Great fun to watch.
Hope you’re having a great day.
(Just in case you’re staring to think I’m really deep … It’s Hammer Time!