Wednesday, October 14, 2009

A day with Lana

Last week I attended a one day workshop with Lana Wilson at Saddleback College in South Orange County. I was looking forward to this day since I read about it in her website... May or June I think. I emailed the instructor at the college and did not hear anything for 3-4 months, I thought that I was not going to be so lucky to get in. But I did! and it was great to attend.

Lana is a very lively and energetic lady. Her life is full of experiences from the many years being a potter, her many travels, her children, a life well lived.
She incorporates times in her life as she is describing her clay work, how a technique happened to be created when she was doing something totally different from clay, or how the night before she was thinking while lying in bed of how to improve a technique that she would show us that day. She is truly fun to watch and listen to. I wish her several days workshops were near by, I'd go in a hearbeat.

While she showed us a lot of stuff in the one day workshop, I will talk about a few things that stuck. She is working with colored slips right now in creating functional pottery, something that was not done by her years ago. She adds the slip to a wet slab by brushing coats of different colored slips. And then proceeds to alter the clay in many ways by carving, stretching, throwing it on the table, stamping and so much more. She created several pieces in the day and I manage to get some pictures of a cup, vase and a couple plates.

Lana is very giving with sharing a lot of her techniques of doing clay. I see her as a kind person who probably saw in us the eagerness to learn and to create something new, beautiful and fun with our own hands. She gave us that sense that it was okay to do whatever we wanted with what she taught us and if in the process we learned something new, or a way to improve (hard to believe) to take on it and just do it.

Thank you to Richard White at Saddleback for letting me in, and to Lana for being a great teacher and an inspiring me to take clay to a new level.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

How could I

Well, here I am again with another apology post. I am so bad in keeping this blog current, I don't know what it is?? Well, I do know a couple reasons why... but there is more than a couple, but I will not get into the couple ones I'm talking about. I am finally walking much better than the last couple months after surgery in July. I can say that walking as my exercise is great, so that has me a little happy that I can walk with my neighbors again.

Also, I am missing the girl now that she is gone to College, so that is taking some time to adjust. Sadly to top it off I had to put my sweet kitty down a few weeks ago, not having her has been very hard. Every time I think of her I start crying.
She had been sick since the beginning of the year and we were trying to figure out what was wrong with her. In the end it was just too much to put her thru more tests. She lost a lot of weight in the meantime and gain some back and ultimately lost some more. Sassy was a cat who LOVED to be petted, she was the neighborhood's cat and paraded herself everywhere. Many of my neighbors are sad to hear she is not here anymore. She was quite a character always demanding of my attention, she also outlived many cats around us that were lost to coyotes. She was a smart and loving kitty that will be missed greatly.

I will post in the next couple days about a clay workshop that I took a few days ago with a very fun and wonderful clay artist from the San Diego area. I have admired her work for several years and felt very lucky to attend the one day demonstration she gave at the local college.

So without making anymore promises of keeping this always current, I'll just say, hasta luego.