Tuesday, October 02, 2007

meant to be

Hello, how cute are these plates? These are a special order for somebody, 12 in all. I always make extras of special orders, and in this case I made an extra 3 plates. Three cracked during the bisque, so every plate left was precious if I wanted the 12 for the order. All three plates cracked in the exact same place in relation to the position of the birds. Hmmm. Another plate got whacked on the edge of something and had a small chip on the underside, which I sanded down so you couldn’t tell. Sara suggested an experiment: why don’t we fill in the crack with this stuff called Magic Mender and see if the crack would still show up through the glaze? This glaze is very thick and it wasn’t impossible that her idea would work.

Now this is the funny thing; I’ve learned over and over that when a piece is going wrong—cracks, chips, warps, etc.—that piece is just not meant to be. It’s like trying to fix up a cake that already fell in the oven. But I try anyway. We filled in the crack with Magic Mender and a half hour later as Sara was glazing it, it went flying out of her hands and shattered on the floor. Sara was devastated, but I knew right away it was the cracked plate. It just committed suicide right in front of us. When the glaze firing came out two days later, one of the birds had migrated across the plate. Again, I knew it had to be the chipped plate, and it was. I glued a dogwood flower to the plate where the bird should be and gave it to my friend. Then I made FOUR more bird plates.


  1. I had no idea, your work can be so emotional! I don`t know how I could deal with it......
    And I agree about those things, when something is not meant to be.... Sometimes an idea is good on paper or in your mind, but it just does n`t work on real thing. So I usually leave it at the moment I don´t have good feeling about it. I just put it away. I don`t like fix "mistakes", because I can always see these, even if no one else can.
    The plates are gorgeous, as everything else what comes from your hands!

  2. Anonymous5:58 AM

    Much as I like your work, I have to say the reference to miscarriage in this post just doesn't sit well with me. For someone who has endured the terrible pain of miscarriage, reading it in relation to cracked pottery just hits a raw nerve.

  3. Hitting raw nerves is not what I intend to do here. After re-reading my post, I agree my choice of metaphor was not the best, though it expressed exactly what I was trying to convey. I gave it some more thought and came up with a different descriptive that I'm sure will sit with everyone just fine and get my point across as well. And my apologies for causing you pain.