remove hands slowly, good posture, no judgment

Welcome to my new little space on the supernet. Here I will be posting about my adventures, learnings and development in the world of ceramics.

I recently moved from Melbourne, Australia to the heart of Spain. Here I have been stumbling my way though the Spanish language (of which my partner is a native speaker), frolicking around the kingdom and attending a full time pottery course. Which is marvellous! I miss the clay when I am at home and the weekends are ever so long without the wheel. So here I am to share with you the development of my hopefully long relationship with this wondrous world!

For years I had wanted to do a short course in pottery, on the wheel of course, as I was (and still am) drawn in by the magic of the material, fluidly transforming from a lump of earth into beautiful forms.

When I discovered that a fellow spanish learner Jane Sawyer was a potter when she was at home I felt a huge rush of energy. What! You can actually be a crafts person these days!? This was and still is a wonderful encouragement… to know someone who actually works hands on in the craft, not just a hobby on the side, but fully immersed. She assured me is was a lot of hard work, but I was too inspired to worry.

After numerous hours of research, months of paperwork, and x amount of dollars I had a student visa for Spain. Many thanks to all those who supported me throughout the process! We got it…the day before the flight! phew

The same day my visa arrived I was ever so lucky to attended a studio workshop At Jane Sawyer’s new studio in Collingwood: Slow Clay Centre! What a delight! It was a porcelain workshop by Prue Venables. A name I was familiar with from some of the large shiny books I frequented at the start library, so it was very exciting! Although the course meant for potters with a bit of experience (which I didn’t have), they welcomed me and I felt very comfortable and privileged to be there.

On that day I sat at a potters wheel for the very first time and persuaded a delicious lump of creamy white porcelain into some sort of vessel. It was great fun! I was quite happy with my first ever wheel thrown piece: unconventionally chunky for porcelain. But the second, which I squeezed into the last 10 minutes of the workshop left something to be desired, so i decided to cut it up and made some modifications with my families kitchen utensils (thanks mum ;)). Almost as much fun as being on the wheel itself!

Numerous times Prue reminded us, “no judgment.” This was most important advice I received that day. It has stuck with me.

My firsts on their bats at Slow Clay Centre, Collingwood

My firsts on their bats at Slow Clay Centre, Collingwood.

Glamour shot of my first ever chunky porcelain gem, thrown with the kind direction of Prue Venables.

Glamour shot of my first ever chunky porcelain gem, thrown with the kind direction of Prue Venables.

Modified bits and bobs. Created from the base, and mouth of the above vessel seen in the studio! (can you guess which one?) ;)

Modified bits & bobs. Created from the base & mouth of the above vessel seen in the studio! (can you guess which?)

Modified basin. Carved out of the second piece thrown in the workshop. (see above, if you wish)

Modified basin. Carved out of the second piece thrown in the workshop. (see above, if you wish)

Pinched forms. Hand built prior to the workshop.

Pinched forms. Hand built prior to the workshop.

Details

Details

8 thoughts on “remove hands slowly, good posture, no judgment

  1. Simon Parker

    I know there is “no judgement” but great start
    It’s great to know you have found your passion. Just saying to your mum “any pots today” and she said ” it’s the weekend” I am really enjoying the updates and seeing wonderful development in your work. I like the “no judgement” rule!
    Much love Simo xxxxx

    Reply
  2. Louise Quinn

    Very impressive start and Nan and I are both so happy you have discovered something you are passionate about. Looking forward to following your journey. Love from us both Louise

    Reply
  3. Jenna Tellefson

    Sophie, beautiful pots and commentary! Lovely to hear you getting so into pottery and to speak again with such gusto! I am reading this blog (from my cleverphone) before sleep tonight on a dairy farm in northern Victoria (cohuna). Its so nice to think of you and your spain life as I am here in cohuna joining in this family’s life. off to sleep now – milking in the early morning before a day of ‘farming’ and evening lawn bowls! much love sop xxx

    Reply
    1. Sophie Parker Post author

      😀 My dear Jen! Glad to hear you are out of the office and into the fields! You must be rather knowledgeable about the industry now! Can’t wait to hear more as we giggle over ice mochas in Jan! Not long now! x

      Reply
  4. James

    HI Sophie, I love your blog, your writing is inspiring. I feel like I am reading a real life pottery version of Julia and Juliet the cooking movie. I agree that pottery wheels are fascinating. Your great uncle al from Perth got involved in pottery and became quite skilled at building kilns for the ceramic artists in Perth he was a man of many trade skills and kiln building combined many of his skills. Potting, creativity, amazing woman, writing and photography seem to be drawing your skills neatly together. I am looking forward to next installments with love James xx

    Reply
    1. Sophie Parker Post author

      James!😀 I’m so glad you enjoyed the post, exactly what I’m after — being able to share with you guys back at home! And I had no idea pottery ran in my blood! Ha! Wonderful! Looking forward to catching up in January! Jane arrives tomorrow! Joy!🙂

      Reply
  5. Laura

    Hey Soph,
    Its great to see some of the things you have been working on🙂
    I am looking forward to seeing the finished products!
    Merry Xmas to you and Jaimie🙂

    Reply

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