What inspires you in your creative ventures? What gives you those ‘aha!’ moments that spur you to push your own boundaries? I’ve had a few interesting ‘Aha!’ moments as I’ve pursued sculpting in clay. Sometimes I didn’t even know I had them until after I was done!
A couple of years ago I made a resting horse with a little girl lying on her tummy with bare feet kicked up, reading a book. A customer in our gallery here at The Village Potters spent quite a bit of time with that piece, and finally spoke. ‘Can I tell you what I’m thinking? I have a photo of my granddaughter sitting on our Golden Retriever, reading a book. Do you think you could sculpt that?’ ‘Absolutely’, I said ‘I’d love to do that for you’. I was a little afraid of the challenge, but more excited by the possibility of creating a piece from a photograph. That conversation resulted in the commissioned piece, and a wonderful working relationship with the customer. The inspiration was hers… the challenge, mine, which in turn became inspiration and took my work to a whole other level!
And just recently, after bisque firing one of my ‘resting horses’ (a horse in a lying down position), I had it turned upside down to glaze some hard to reach areas. I looked at it from across the studio, and there it was… a horse rolling over! ‘Oh my gosh! I need to sculpt THAT!’ I mean, what horse lover isn’t fascinated by those amazing 1,000 pound animals rolling around in a field with the agility of a small puppy! It’s proved to be a challenge for sure, but in the end, one of my best pieces yet.
So, I ask again… what inspires you? If you sculpted in clay, what would you choose to sculpt? Does even the thought feel intimidating? Go for the challenge of it, and find the excitement of conquering something new. And if you’ve never even tried to sculpt, come to The Village Potters and join our beginning sculpture class and find out what inspires you!