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Monday, 20 July 2009

Does training for a 1/2 marathon and potting mix?

Hmmmn, that would be a big fat NO!!!!
Every morning that I train, I cannot help but be extremely exhausted and useless the remainder of the day! Sadly, with my impending race next weekend, more training sessions means more useless days.
I did have one to two really productive days this past week.
First, I managed to clear 118 test batches of glaze. Yes, you read correctly, 118 batches of 100g glaze pots, built up over 2 years in my endeavour to find that perfect glaze and slip. Can you believe it took over 3 hours to scrape clean into plaster batt (to dry for easy dumping into toxic section of my local recycling/waste centre) and scrub the pots clean. Man, that was a workout in itself! However, what a great feeling it was. Not only did it open up space in my already cramped pottery, but it was a realisation that I had reached the end of my journey of researching, developing and testing.
Once thought of as the unreachable goal, I find myself emerging on the other side of that excrutiating long dark tunnel I have been crawling through for years. I feel like I can finally start enjoying the creative process again, now that I have some decisive conclusions about the clay, additives, slips and glazes I will be using going forward. No more juggling between 22 strains of stain concentrations tested amongst 6 different types of slips which lie under the choice of 15 different glazes, all of which can be applied on top of 11 various white clays. You get the point. The variables have narrowed to a manageable amount.
I have my chosen materials and batches of slip/glaze.
I know how my kiln fires - knowing the hot and cold spots and how best to fire my chosen materials.
I know the forms I want to make and sell.
I have even managed to simplify what it is that I am making - reducing the types of forms on offer, streamlining the making process to a more suitable level of ease.

This leads to the second productive day of my week: I actually started making my new forms and it felt so good just to create, knowing exactly what decoration I was going to apply rather than settling with some undeveloped glaze cover for the sake of finishing the form off. How great did it feel!!! Now I just have to fire and assemble the goods to see how they look!

So, from now on it is time to keep moving with my prototypes and emerge from my long retreat and show everyone what it is that I can offer the world.
A very exciting time! Perhaps all these years of slogging it behind the scenes with scores and scores of okay ideas always seemingly resulting in bad outcomes will actually start paying off!

So, after next weekend's big race, I can only imagine what more energy from reduced running will bring to the potter's wheel! I cannot wait!


  1. Hey Jamie, total respect to the progress! I always knew you would do it.

  2. Thanks so much! Think I need another challenge again, i have been so lazy this week!

  3. Wow! This amazing! I had no idea how scientific this is!