Birth of a Potter

When I was little I wanted to go live with my father.  I would ride by the housing area on the bus where I thought he lived and look at each of the houses trying to figure out which one might be his.  I checked every mailbox for the last name "Potter".  I looked and looked for my name, but I was never able to find it.

When I was nine or ten a new toy was released that I wanted so desperately.  The commercial was amazing.  These little kids were sitting at a table making pots!  I found this similar commercial online.  I wanted to be a potter...  HEY wait a minute, I was a POTTER!  I decided that very day I wanted to work with clay.

Gilbert Pottery Craft Potter's Wheel - Front of Box

I ended up getting my potter's wheel for Christmas and much like the other "as seen on TV" gifts it was crap. I failed miserably and it ended up in the trash.

The years rolled by and I often watched TV shows about making things with clay but never really thought about doing it again.  After all I had failed at age ten.

About 2 years ago I started doing some hand building with clay.  I worked up to making statues and masks. One day, I was chatting with hubby and said, I wish I could use a pottery wheel.  I told him my story of the motorized wheel I got for Christmas.  He reminded me how I didn't have any happy childhood stories.  We laughed and he said, so get one.  I thought for a second and then was like ... well  I suppose I could.

Last month we picked up two kilns for a steal and this month we purchased my ClayBoss Potter's Wheel. Today I went outside for my fourth attempt at working on the wheel.  My arms are a little sore as I'm getting used to centering and pulling the clay.  My back is sore as I'm using different muscles than I'm used to, hunching over to mold it.

I have to say, I love it.  I've not made anything to keep for firing yet.  In fact, I'm not entirely sure I'll be at a point to fire anything until next year.  But I am loving it.

I've had a few successes:

Photo Credit - Renee Olson

Photo Credit - Renee Olson

Photo Credit - Renee Olson

And a failure or two:

Photo Credit - Renee Olson

A lot has changed since I was riding that bus, searching for a mail box with "Potter" on it.  I'm no longer searching for a place where I will be accepted and loved.  I'm no longer trying to make and mold something out of nothing.  I now have the strength within myself to mold and shape the world into a place where I want to be and with that in my tool kit, I can claim the title of  Potter.

Looking forward to what new things I can make.


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