MY HAND-CRAFTING PROCESS
All my creations begin with a vision of a particular piece. Sometime I see a snapshot of an unfolding event, story, sometimes I see shapes and colors in response to an ocean-related experience. I canít tell you how those inspirations from personal experiences get transformed into colors and shapes of these visions; perhaps, a subconscious kinship with the oceans and beaches unleash those primal, creative forces in my brain.
I always make sketches of my visions. Wherever I go I keep a sketch pad and pencil near me in case a vision comes to me unexpectedly. During the days and weeks after the original sketch I keep making new and modified versions of the original in an attempt to fine tune the design. At the end of this designing process I have several sketches to guide me to make prototypes. Itís only after making several prototypes of a piece when I can decide which versions of a piece would best communicate the story at hand.
To make my pieces I hand-build all shapes. I donít use any machinery; even for rolling out a sheet of clay I use a rolling pin. This way itís always the touch of my hands that embeds the vision, the story into each piece. I donít have assistants or helpers at any stage of my work. As a consequence, each piece is handled by me several times from the clay stage to the final glazed product. I have full control of the creative process, and I can always take 100% credit (or 100% of the blame) for the final product
Once the original shapes are formed from wet clay, I let the clay dry, while making adjustments to the piece if needed. The bone-dry clay piece may be sanded, smoothed before firing. This bisque firing is followed by adding color to the piece by dripping and brushing commercial or home-mixed glazes. The glaze firing adds the shine to the pieces. For some pieces additional glaze layers, or glass items are added followed by several subsequent firings.
The final piece is always an intersection of my original inspiring experience, my vision, technical innovations, and the artistic effort. While crafting my pieces I disconnect from the distractions of the present time, and connect deeply with my memories and visions.