Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Carpo Diem

...starting from tomorrow!

I can't believe it's such a long time since my last post. Time has whizzed by.  As I sit and question what on earth I've been doing these last 3 months, I'm aware this is the last day of 2013, the last day of what has been a Huge and Unforgettable year for me. Wow!

Chawan at Embassy of Japan, London
I had a nice little surprise in October when I was invited to take part in an exhibition at the Embassy of Japan in London. It was called Chawan : Insight into Beauty. All participants submitted a few chawan tea bowls : they had to be functional which meant I adapted my choice of slips and glazes which gives them a calm and contemplative quality I feel.

Here are a couple of examples. I was delighted to take part in the exhibition, and very pleased with the results too. More to follow in 2014!

Making has now stopped for a few weeks.  I deliberately stop making at this time of the year. To be honest,  I've run out of steam, or clay, or both. The idea is that when I start again, I'll have a new release of energy and will be chomping at the bit to get cracking. I now have chance to catch up, reflect, and try to get organized. Very virtuous.

For a while now, I've been collating thoughts and pictures from my residency in Australia to put together in some kind of document, although I haven't quite decided yet what form it will take. It's taking hours and hours and hours - some of it constructive, some of it just daydreaming. I'm sure I'll have more news on this in my next post.

For those of you who have trouble daydreaming, listen to this lovely little song I'm A Dreamer by Josephine Foster, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NfdBZUFWHFs.(WARNING: not advisable if you are already prone to daydreaming. I first listened to this song in September, and look where we are now - it's December 31st!!)

Bark vessel
I've also put together a leaflet on my residency too. You can download your copy from this link:

Robin Welch bowl

The RWFC (Robin Welch Fan Club) and I went to see Robin's work at the Sainsbury's Centre, Norwich.  If you're looking for a day out, it's a fascinating exhibition called Materpieces: Art & East Anglia ( http://www.scva.ac.uk/exhibitions/current/?exhibition=113).
Here's a picture of a very handsome Robin Welch bowl which was bought by the Attenborough's in the 60's. It was in good company alongside Elizabeth Fritsch, Lucie Rie and Hans Coper pieces.
Stunning setting at SCVA  with Mrs Welch and Mr McInnes.

Tuesday class at Rufford Craft Centre

My classes at Rufford Craft Centre wrapped up nicely with a festive fuddle. I'm lucky to have a great bunch of enthusiastic students. A big thank you to all of them for their good humour, application, and support. They make pretty good pots too and make Tuesdays a highlight of the week. Thank you everyone!

 A blog post wouldn't be complete without a few pictures of The Outside (and they also count towards one of your 5-a day). Here are a few I took around Hathersage/Stanedge Edge, Derbyshire, on Boxing Day this Christmas.



In my first blog back in January (There's No Other Place Like Home? http://rachelwood-ceramics.blogspot.co.uk/2013_01_01_archive.html), I mentioned eating frogs. Time to clarify - I was referring to a great motivational book I'd read by Brian Tracy, Eat that Frog, 21 ways to stop procrastinating. The Frog in question at that time had been applying for my residency at Sturt. And look what happened. Watch this for a taste: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0W7GB5Fh2XM

And thinking about the question There's No Other Place Like Home?, I think the answer for me is yes, definitely, as I found out this year during my residency. It's also made me aware that home isn't necessarily related to a physical place. It's more about the knowledge that  if you know where you heart lies, then that's when you've found home.

To end the post with a little sunshine, peace and a relaxing moment, I've included this short video I took whilst having sandwiches at Reef Bay, Sydney. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mMR_PCVnlc
Thanks so much to the Bush and my bush walking buddies.

I wish you all the very best for 2014. Thank you so much for reading my blog and I look forward to another exciting year to tell you about. Happy New Year.