Photo by Quino Al on Unsplash
My father came into my room demanding to know what I was doing.
I was sitting on my bed reading.
It was a Sunday afternoon, and he had other ideas as to what a teenage boy should be doing.
He confiscated the book and told me to get outside and get my hands dirty doing some ‘real work’.
I wasn’t a practical work with your hands sort of kid, and so I avoided it whenever I could. There were some things I didn’t mind, like chopping firewood and mowing the lawn. They were tasks which had an obvious outcome.
High school opened my eyes to art in all its forms.
I was fascinated by pottery. The notion of a lump of featureless clay being shaped into an object people would find aesthetically pleasing was something I latched onto as a feasible expression of what I thought art could be.
I knew it was not as easy as it looked and I did watch the film “Ghost” which made it look all so romantic.
My first efforts were as expected not memorable. But I persevered and with the help of my teacher and later an old neighbour who had a wheel in his shed I slowly learned to feel my may in the clay and make it, and my hands work together.
I have learned to never take it for granted. I have to concentrate on what I am doing and a little like writing at times allow the muse inside of you to dictate where and what might come next.
It’s a gift I have, and I know if my father were alive today he would see me getting my hands dirty and in doing so I am making a good living as my work is in demand.