I haven't done @sharing_saturday since before NCECA due to non stop travel. This Saturday I'm getting back into it, but in a bit of a different way. If you've ever been to a ceramic conference please share your experiences in the comments for others to read!!!*
I was reading an article by Dick Lehman in Clay Times, which I got from NCECA, and it really resonated with me. It talked about the importance of collecting pots. Not just because they're beautiful, or well made, but because every time we touch a pot we learn from it, including our own. He also talked about how important it is to collect the best of one of your own pots from each firing to build a reference library. Some potters say that they never keep their own work and I can completely appreciate that line of thinking because they would rather fill their home with other's pots. Some keep a piece, like myself, if it just really shines and is a pivotal transition in their work. *
The point of saying any of this is not to say if one way or another is wrong, because it's really a personal decision, but to make a comment about how important spending time with a pot is. For example, I was very much inspired by the beautiful work of Jennifer Allen, @jenallenceramics , but I had never actually held a piece of her work until a year after being inspired by her forms. One of her mugs was the very first piece that I bought at my first NCECA in Providence. It held a wealth of knowledge that I continue to learn from today. To be able to touch each little detail and feel the thickness of the handle helped me to truly comprehend what it meant to use a well made handle. *
Each year at NCECA I go in with a list of pots that I want to acquire to study and enjoy. Conferences like NCECA offer many opportunities to learn from lectures and demos, but you never stop being able to engage with a well made pot even years down the road. One of the many great things about NCECA is the accessibility to so many well made pots.*
If you can make it to a conference, even the smaller ones it will help to make you a better creator for years to come. *
I look forward to interviewing and sharing the artist that I have lined up.