Parnter

Having a Partner

Posted by on Jun 22, 2014 in Parnter | 0 comments

Which pots are yours?  How does having a partner work?  Who made this pot? These are some of the questions that we are frequently asked.  I am not sure why it seems so out of the ordinary to work collaboratively in clay.  After all, there are a number of successful collaborations in many media: Rogers and Hammerstein, Simon and Garfunkel, Ira and George Gershwin, Hall and Oats. And, those are just off the top of my head.  The reality is, most creative work is collaborative.  No movie is made by one person – the ten minutes of credits are testimony to the host of people involved. Julie and I met while working at a community studio.  We were both ‘clay crazy’ so when Julie was approached about purchasing a booth in a local craft fair, she invited me to split it with her.  After, a while, we began working collaboratively. Every partnership is unique.  Although Julie and I are different, we are compatible in essential areas.  We share a similar work ethic and susceptibility to guilt.   This means we each worry that we aren’t carrying our own weight which results us making a lot of pots.  We also have a similar aesthetic.  This is valuable  because otherwise our body of work would not have a unified feel.  Julie and I also share a respect for well-thrown and balanced pottery.  This causes us to be open to one another’s critiques because when all is said and done, we want to make better pots. Here is an overview of how we work.  When we throw together, we work at Julie’s studio where I have a wheel.  We get the clay ready (sometimes she has this done before I get there) and throw whatever pots are on our agenda.  Then we work on finishing them.  This means that one or both of us will trim or add attachments regardless of who threw the pot body.   Sometimes we work independently; this is mostly due to our schedules.  We each have a list of things that we make monthly; but we still glaze the pots together.  When we glaze, one of us waxes as the other preps glaze or starts the glazing.  As the pots are finished, Julie loads them in the kiln (her super-power is packing).  While we throw or glaze pots, we have an on-going discussion of ideas of things to implement and change.  This is when we come up with new designs or ways to improve our existing work. Having a partner is great because it divides the administrative and non-pot making tasks.  I handle most of the book-keeping, show applications, photography, and glaze-mixing.  Julie handles most of the ordering and purchasing (supplies/glazes/business cards/lunch, etc.); she also does most of the kiln loading/unloading and recycles most of the clay. I know that I would not have accomplished as much as I have without having worked with Julie; and, for that, I celebrate my friend today.  Happy Birthday!...

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Photo shoot

Posted by on Sep 8, 2012 in About Me, Parnter | 0 comments

As I have developed into a potter, I have learned a lot of things – how to make pots, mix glazes, load kilns, recycle clay…  But what I didn’t think I would have to learn is how to have my picture taken. I am not particularly comfortable with having my photo taken (I thought I would have been over that by this point in my life but it seems that isn’t the case).  The thing is, when people purchase a handmade items, they want to know about artists which includes seeing a photo. So once again, A-La-Mode Photography, came to our rescue.  Speight and Nassim came by the studio and shot several photos of us, our work, and the Sous-potters.  They have amazing talent and generous...

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Our symbol

Posted by on Jun 22, 2012 in Parnter | 0 comments

How a potter marks her pots is a big decision.  At first, I wrote my name on the bottoms; but, when I saw a co-worker using one of the mugs I made with my name on it, it felt out of place.  So, I began using my initials. But, when Julie and I began to work together, our pots became more collaborative so we decided to use a joint signature.  It was a funny coincidence when we both suggested the Japanese symbol for friend. And, on this day, I celebrate my friend.  Happy...

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Having a Partner

Posted by on Jun 22, 2011 in A Bit Off Center, About Me, Parnter, Teaching | 2 comments

Julie and I met at a community art center while taking pottery classes; and, in 2008, we started working together.  Working with a partner has been great because I have made more pottery, tried more glazes, attended a lot of workshops, and started selling in stores and shows.  By partnering with Julie, I have gone further in ceramics in a shorter time because she pushes me more than I would push myself – if left to my own devices I would lie on the couch for a large portion of my life. Julie is kind, direct, honest, hard working, high energy, driven, and generous.  She is also brave – she will try a lot of things that I wouldn’t give a second thought.  She began teaching adult pottery classes before I did; in fact, she encouraged me to teach before I felt confident.  Julie isn’t intimidated by colors the way I am – she is bold and will try combinations on pots rather than testing them first and she has a great natural sense of aesthetics. She is fun but focused.  I think I am slack but she says she is the slacker.  I guess since we both have that perspective, it works out.  She handles a lot of things that I am not good at – marketing, PR, interfacing with clients.  And, she humors me as I handle the administrative tasks – things she could do but doesn’t enjoy. Our pots are collaborative which means that there is a lot of discussion and compromising.  Having a partner forces me to articulate what I want to do or why I am doing it – which makes my ideas tangible.  Often, this process helps me understand my ideas better and develop new ones. There may come a time when we need to have some space to develop our individual aesthetics but that isn’t now.  For the moment, we have common goals and rely on each other to accomplish those goals.  I have a partner but I also have a friend – and I am very thankful that the Lord brought her into my life.  So today I will eat cake in her honor – Happy Birthday,...

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