December 28, 2008

Before the Year Ends

One fear I have is that I may not have anything relevant to say, much less write a blog about, but "fools rush in" as the songs says.

After a few days of R and R with family for the holidays, I have managed to distance myself from the woes of studio completion, or rather, lack thereof. I have been sequestered from worries and concerns and I must say it is very refreshing. I've realized that it's a very stressful thing to a) not have a studio that one can make things in, b) stretch your skills and do things that require a lot of experience to do right and do well. Meanwhile...

I have been enjoying two books that I got from Santa this week. Both recommended to Santa by my buddy, Tom Turner. One is ironically titled, "Talking with the Turners" by Charles R. Mack. [No, it's not about Tom's family.] It's a collection of "conversations with southern folk potters" and includes a CD with recordings made by Mr. Mack in 1981. I really like what I've read so far especially since there are obviously a lot of stories about the ways that pottery was made back in the old days. I am hoping to hear from Mr. Mack to get permission to quote excerpts from the book so that you might want to add this book to your pottery library as well. With permission I hope to put a few of the audio tracks here for your enjoyment. More later I hope.

The other book has been on my wish list since it was published in 2006, Alabama Folk Pottery, by Joey Brackner. This is a big coffee table kind of book that isn't always easy to hold while reading in bed, but that's OK because it's really a marvelous object to look at and I'm sure it will be on your bookshelf soon if not already if you're a lover of old pots, especially old southern pots. In the short time that I've been reading it, I've realized that wonderful pots were being made all across the south, not just NC and GA, but it took an insightful and well researched book to spread the word about the Alabama pottery tradition. Hopefully books about the Mississippi and Texas pottery traditions are in the works, too! Of course as the nation grew it needed pottery, and as this book clearly shows the potters were pioneers as well. Maybe after I have read the whole book, I will be able to write a review.

I would hope though, that you set aside a few dollars here and there to get these great books. Times are tight but you shouldn't neglect your library. My library has suffered greatly since budget cuts shortly after our first daughter, Evelyn, was born, but I won't hold that against her. ;)
It's only because I don't have a realistic budget in the first place. God knows I could at least buy one worthy book each year with money saved from certain revenues collected from certain ads from certain said blog. [But I'm not supposed to mention that.]

I am so thankful to my family who gave these books to me for Christmas! They are my most wonderful supporters!

As far as the new shop is concerned, you can rest assured that I will continue to plug away at the punch list and keep you informed of anything exciting that happens, like electricity!!! I'm getting really close to getting the wheels in there and building a few counter tops and such.
As always, thanks so much for reading.