Friday, February 20, 2009
Enough hockey, MORE POTTERY!
Let's talk about feet.
Last night I was helping teach a class on trimming. It really made me much more aware of how much effort (and time) I put into trimming feet. I was explaining that designing feet for pots was sort of like designing shoes to compliment an outfit. Part of the process is purely functional, but part of it is definitely style. Some of my best friends mock my choice in footware... I wear Crocs. BUT they feel great. I wouldn't be caught dead in them at a wedding though. So, the outfit determines the shoes. I think if I could find/afford them, I would wear Keens more often. I just destroy shoes in the studio.
So... looking at feet on pots....
The things I try to see:
How does the foot relate to the floor of the pot?
How does the radius of the foot relate to the lip of the pot?
What functional constraints are we dealing with?
Does this pot even need a foot?
What would the WRONG foot be?
How do I want someone to feel when they turn this pot over?
I think as potters go from being beginners to starting to develop a style, there is this assumption that one foot will suit all their work. Sure. It just looks like wearing the same shoes to every venue. Sneakers look funny in the snow or at a formal dance. Pots are the same way. Some pots DEMAND certain foot treatment.
One of the things I have been trying to work through in my mind (haven't even come close to putting thoughts to clay yet)...is the idea of altering the foot during the trimming/throwing process. I have done precious few thrown feet. I think I may be at that point where I need to branch away from the strictly trimmed foot. New dance to learn!