Saturday, December 21, 2013

Dreaming About Pottery

What does a person do living in a motor home for seven months? Has it been that long? How time flies and yet how it drags on without clay. We look for a new home, travel, take photos, sight see, but still there's time left over. Time in the evenings, mornings, or afternoons when it's raining or when one more movie just doesn't get it. There's lots of thinking time. I've read a ton of novels, more in the last few months than the last few years. But my brain and my fingers are still itching to make something in clay. I've spent a lot of time dreaming about pottery.

Yesterday we applied for library cards so we can borrow books from the library instead of buying from the used book store to save money. Since I can read a book a night, that ends up being a lot of books over time. I found a number of novels at the library. But before leaving I decided to check out the art section to see if there were any pottery books. Of course I found a couple of books I haven't read before. The first was Pottery Decoration by Thomas Shafer.

Due to their age some books are dated but this book has inspiration to offer for the here and now. There are even some beautiful color pottery photos in the book. The sprigged jug in the first photo is from the book. The sprigs have so much detail; the piece is truly amazing. The slip trail tool illustrations above are also from the book. There's lots descriptions and examples on ways to decorate pottery like carving, texturing, sprigs and so forth.

The other book I found is The Mud-Pie Dilemma, A Master Potter's Struggle to Make Art and Ends Meet by John Nance. This book is the original version; I understand there's an update. I'm sure the original will have some good tips for me. Since it's a rainy day I'm glad we stopped at the library yesterday for a few books to keep us occupied over the weekend. Hope your holiday preparations aren't wearing you down on the shortest day of the year. Thanks for reading and for all your comments.


  1. And soon, very soon I hope, you will be able to 'get your hands dirty' again.

  2. Love the jug in the first photo. May you soon be potting!

  3. I am looking forward to seeing what your first creations will be now that you have had all this time to think about it.....

  4. Look for a bright side of things: you can read many books, it's wonderful ! You have many time for you. And your ideas are growing inside your head... Everything will be OK one day :)

  5. Pottery dreams are brewing all sorts of possibilities for you. A Happy Solstice to you and yours!

  6. May your pottery dreams come true very soon!!
    I also read a book which describes well what Rikyu(the 16th century tea ceremony master) thought about good clay tea bowls. The books you read sound interesting!!

    Warmest wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!

  7. The mud-pie dilemma sounds especially interesting, I'd love to read that one. I was given a book on pottery from the 1960s's interesting to see how approaches to the subject have changed over the years. You can always learn and be inspired no matter how old the text.

    Hope you'll be able to get back to making again soon.

  8. Merry Christmas my dear blogfriend.


  9. The library is the only reason I still in the house where we live. I can walk there and spend hours there....... it allows me to dream and take trips I will never take.

    Good luck with new ideas from old books :)

    Happy Holidays!!

  10. I know that itch and commiserate with you. Some of those old books have great ideas you can use in an updated way in ones own work. Have a lovely time reading them. I'd be much poorer if not for our local library!
    Hope you can scratch that itch soon :)

  11. Hi Elephant's Child, thanks, yes soon, we've got cabin fever, or RV fever. Ha.

    Hi Joanne, thanks, I'd love to rub my finger across that jug, there are vines with acorns and a small bearded man's head near the top, lots of detail.

    Hi Dee, thanks, oh I'll probably have lots of failures and be out of practice and all, I hope not.

    Hi Llona Jo, thanks, I am sure I will look back on this time when I am very busy again and think why did I complain so. Ha.

    Hi Suzi, thanks so much, happy holidays to you as well.

    Hi Sapphire, thanks, I just read a book about the tea ceremony as well. I will post about it; I wonder if we have read the same book.

    Hi Mark, thanks, yes it is interesting how pottery techniques have changed but the old techniques can also inspire.

    Hi Elna, thanks, happy holidays to you and your family.

    Hi Sandy, thanks, yes the library is very inspiring and I know just what you mean about taking trips you can never do in reality but dream about them from the books seeing the photos and reading the pages; great stimuli for the mind.

    Hi Anna, thanks, I am so glad there are still paper books to actually hold and read so much more real than the computer books to me.

  12. John Nance' book should give you lots of things to think about also.

    It's possible that your library has access to all the libraries in the county so you can order books on-line that are not in your branch.

  13. Hi Lori, thanks, I think the libraries are all interconnected, can't wait to take advantage of all they have to offer, so much inspiration in all types of books even fabric and interior decorating. Ha.


I love suggestions, questions, critiques, thanks for your comment