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Head, Hands, Heart

For me, the process of making pottery involves my head, my hands, and my heart.

First, I decide what shape I will create; in my head I usually have an image of what the pot will look like finished. And because I am a production potter, I like to create series of pots--families. It's very gratifying to look at a ware board full of pots that look alike but when you look closely, you see they are slightly different from each other, like siblings.

Next, I let my fingers shape the pots. After all these years of making pottery, my fingers have muscle memory, they know what to do, and I trust them to create the pots my head imagines--I let them do what they know how to do.

Finally, my heart knows when the pots are finished, when the pots are what I have envisioned, and when they are as good as I want them to be, that I have the control to make them the best that I can and that that best keeps getting better.

The wonder of the making process comes from knowing what I want my hands and my heart to do. When I look at what I have created, I am in awe that these forms came from my hands, my heart, and my head. If I think about the forming as I work, the wonder of the process disappears.

I have learned to be patient, to work to my own rhythm of making, and to be grateful for being able to create.


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