Monday, April 23, 2012

La Mano Pottery

My search for a new hobby continues. My sister and brother-in-law were really into pottery for a while and they've made some really beautiful pieces. I wondered if the gift could possibly be genetic. I found a pottery studio in Chelsea that offered introductory workshops. Hey, $75 isn't bad if it leads to a critically acclaimed pottery career or, at the very least, a fun evening outside my apartment.

I started with the hand-building class because they told me it was easier than the wheel class. We had 10 people in our group - three friends (including one woman who was 8 months pregnant), two couples, and another pair of friends and me. Everyone was really friendly and it was a fun night. I love having some sort of social interaction outside of work.

The teacher showed us how to make a simple cup with a handle. She admitted that it took years of practice to become good. I wasn't listening. I wanted to create a masterpiece in about 15 minutes. Obviously, it didn't work that way. Everyone else was making vases and mugs with ornate patterns and textures. And I'm just sitting there with a flat piece of clay and some bad designs. I was quickly losing steam and interest. But I kept going and eventually did make a pretty cool cup with a neat, square, tiled texture. I slipped and scored the bottom so it'd stay together. It was, technically, a cup / pencil holder / abstract vase. But it wasn't quite done. I rolled out some more clay and made a matching, textured rim for it. I was actually quite satisfied with the way it turned out. I decided to save it. I'll need to wait for about 3 weeks while they let it dry, fire it and then glaze it.

The teacher explained that it's a skill that can be learned. I'd like to stick with it and get good. Michele and Kasey say that it's a good way to clear your head because you have to focus on what you're doing. The plan is to do the introductory wheel class and see how that goes. If I enjoy it, then I'll consider signing up for an 8-week class. I'm so excited that I may have found a new hobby.

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