Thursday, March 31, 2011

With apologies to my friends back east, Spring has arrived here in Las Vegas

When you grow up in Los Angeles, grade school kids learn about the California Missions. At least they did when I was in school there. It's funny, because when I eventually moved to Ohio, I'd never heard of the Amish at all. It is interesting what we deem is important for our kids to learn in school. There really is a regional subjectivity to it all, isn't there?

The missions were a series of religious (and sometimes military) enclaves, mostly built by Spanish Franciscans or Catholics. These small settlements were built across the southern part of the state. If I remember my studies, I think there was a total of about 20 missions. ( I just checked and there are 21.)

Basically, it was one group of people (the settlers) trying to convert another group (the natives) to their religion - wait, that crap is still happening today!

The reason I mention this is because I have many memories of field trips and class projects, where we would study this ancient southwest history. Pretty interesting stuff. The architecture was fascinating, like these stone carvings at Mission Santa Barbara.

The stonework is amazing.

Yes, this line of thought is going somewhere - today I was drying some clay in the sun. It made me think of the missions, with all their adobe and terra cotta work.

Here are some of my tile drying in the sun.

I usually wait until they're well past a leatherhard state, so that they won't dry too fast. Drying clay too quickly makes it warp, which - for tile, is not a good thing at all.

Of course, you know what Stella had on her mind.

Did I just find a piece of gold in the yard?

Here is a potsticker platter, awaiting the kiln.

Work is starting to build up in my studio, and it's nearly time to get the hammer out and start weeding out the good from the bad.

I've been trying to get the wood school set up so I can start offering some ceramic classes - what a chore! But the good news is - I am getting closer every day. The sink with a clay trap has been installed, and hopefully, I'll be ordering a new kiln and slab roller soon.

I'm working on some new designs - Spring has sprung! To my friends and family back east - hang in - warmer weather has to be coming soon.

1 comment:

tulle said...

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