Akemi has been hinting about it for years now – on the heels of straight out asking me on several occasions.  I considered making the commitment but, inevitably, always changed my mind, anxious at the very thought of saying yes and the foreboding hurdles of going through with it.  Then, sometime late last year, she stopped hinting.  I assume she must have given up hope.  Which made me feel a little sad.  And a little guilty.  So when Valentine’s Day rolled around this year, I decided to take the plunge.

Yes.  I told my mother last night.  And now, you are all the first to know.  Yes, congratulations are in order.  Yesterday,  Akemi and I…

Attended a pottery class.

She’s been dying to do it since what feels like forever and, while I’m happy to make sacrifices for love, the thought of two 3 hour craft sessions never failed to trigger a deep-seeded panic in me.  But I bit the bullet and signed us up and yesterday, we did it.  We learned how to manipulate wet clay on that spinning table.  And make cups and bowl like kids trying Play-Doh for the first time.  I had my heart set on an ashtray or birdhouse, but I suppose I have to start small.  Yes, smaller than an ashtray.

Akemi was, admittedly, better at it.  Also, much, much, MUCH more interested.  I worked that wheel until my back ached and the sides of my hands burned, finally producing a quasi matcha bowl that, in retrospect, probably could pass for an ashtray.  I set it aside at the front of the room, proudly signed by name, then glanced up at the clock, assuming I had time to clean up, take a few photos, and call it a day.  3:45!!!!  Only an hour and fifteen minutes had passed!  I still had another two hours to go!

My pottery class pictorial –

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Akemi, rarin’ to go!

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Yours truly, less rarin’.

P.S. The denim apron wasn’t mine.  But the clay-spattered jeans and sweater are!

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Akemi making a good first impression.

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Please.  Eyes on your own pottery wheel.  No copying!

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Two of Akemi’s ten creations.  She apparently felt sorry for me on account of my overall ineptness and slowed down.

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The Master at work!

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Her bowl work.

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And my masterpiece: “Alphonse the Bugbear”.

And we get to do it all over again next Sunday!

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Gforce
Gforce

Haha, you’re such a tease. My first thought on seeing the title was, “Dark Matter season 4!!” But when I read the text I figured it couldn’t be, you know, the “M” word, but was amazed to see you got to try pottery! I’ve actually always wanted to try that. Once. But we need to see more of your creations! Akemi appears to be a natural at it.

Mark
Mark

Akemi’s work is beautiful – any chance she,or you, could fashion a Raza ?.

Thogar

Remember when we used to play in the mud for free?

Jon Hrubesch

Ha ha. Nice! You had me going there. Nice work on the pottery wheel too. You both are doing great for only one session. Love Alphonso. smile

DP
DP

At least there’s lots of stuff to look at on the walls so your eyes don’t get tired looking at your phone.

John
John

You do remember that pottery scene in Ghost, don’t you? Think of that next Sunday!

TheOtherOne
TheOtherOne

Ooooow Joe!!! Had palpitations twice there!!!

BTW I think your ‘Alphonse the Bugbear’ kitchen measuring spoons will be a hit!

Tammy Dixon
Tammy Dixon

You big tease smile . Thanks for the smile today. The class looks fun and Akemi looks so beautiful.

nantokanaru77

LOL. Funny. Nice work though. Bugbear!

Margaret Clayton

Alphonse is dashing, I like his attitude. Once upon a time in high school, I had a pottery class. As a transfer student, I had a lot of artsy electives because I didn’t have the prerequisites or teacher recommendations for anything interesting or advanced. (Ask me someday about my circuteous educational route). I absolutely could not use the wheel, so yes, you can fail ceramics. I made a lot of weird little creatures, and a sad ashtray. Turns out Mom kept them all. The ashtray now sits on my kitchen counter and holds my keys and random pocket crap.

You didn’t have me fooled for a moment. Well, there’s always Vegas, baby. Does Canada have a go to destination for impulsive life decisions? Montreal, maybe?

Also, isn’t it deep seated?

Sylvia
Sylvia

Akema loooooooks absolutely radiant and happy!

Car
Car

I love the dish Akemi made. Reminiscent of Hokusai. She has a talent. You, sorry, not so much sad

Renee Sands Author
Renee Sands Author

That is awesome. A couple that clays together, stays together. lol

Ponytail
Ponytail

Wow, Akemi is very impressive for her first pottery class! I love “Her Bowl Work” piece. Did she stamp that design in there? It is beautiful. I had pottery class in art school one summer. My, rather small, pieces are laying all over my house. I was better at hand manipulating the clay than working the wheel. I hope next class you get to glaze all your pieces? Akemi’s fancy bowl should be awesome after glazing and firing. Be sure to show us the finished products. Please.

(PS: You didn’t fool me one bit. You are nothing but a big tease!)

newmoon410

grin I knew where you weren’t going with that … but it was a fun read anyway. I’ll bet you had a better time while throwing clay than you hinted at. Akemi’s smiles are great! smile I love her bowl and other work. ‘Alphonse the Bugbear’ shows artistic talent, IMHO. (Really!)

Colleen S
Colleen S

You naughty man. You really had me going. Akemi’s talent is evident and you gave it the old school try. Kudos.

Rebecca
Rebecca

I wish I could get my husband to take a pottery class with me. I’m glad you bit the bullet and did it. I’m sure Akemi appreciated it. Cue; “Unchained Melody.”

Nicolas Bannister

Very cool! Kudos for the Valentine gift. Great idea.

Playing with clay is awesome, it’s very organic. Takes time to figure out how that works, can be a bit frustrating. The only thing I ever did was in artschool, building human and animal faces. That was a bit baptism by fire… >__< grin The turntable's very fun, gotta know when to stop, though, before it goes all flubby. ^^
Will you enamel them? You could make some raku. razz
You'll see, drinkng tea or eating in a bowl/plate that you made yourself, it's amazing. Very satisfying.

Sylvia
Sylvia

My apologies to Akemi….I fat fingered typing her name.

Akemi did and does look so very radiant and happy!

jimfromjersey

I see what you did there!

Akemi, well done on the pottery! Joe, nice blog entry. =)

shinyhula
shinyhula

You sir are clearly not maximizing your pottery potential. Where’s your Infinity Gauntlet? The Darth Mug? The Bat Symbol coasters? Lulu and Suji are waiting for their custom water bowls complete with Versailles-inspired dancing fountains.

PBMom

My book club buddies wanted us to do a painting craft at one of our meetings (it was book-theme tangent) and there was a book there to give us some inspiration. Mine sucked horribly. I decided to do an abstract but even with that, it was TERRIBLE. However, I did much better when we had our book club down at the beach in October and using pottery already made so painting was the only thing required. I went on Pinterest for inspiration and chose the easiest possible pattern to replicate and it came out pretty good. I was proud of it considering these things aren’t in my wheelhouse.