Monday, July 7, 2008

Grim business

So I fired some tests yesterday. I haven't had a chance to swing by the studio and peek at the results yet. I am hopeful though. I always am.

A few months ago a woman who I share studio space with asked me to make her an urn. She told me she wanted the urn to have feminine lines. I agreed, it seemed like a good challenge. I immediately thought of Nick Joerling. Something whimsical yet conveying feminine qualities. Then she told me the urn was for her daughter's ashes.

I really like this woman. She's super cool. She always shows up to studio events and brings the best treats for us all. She's supportive of everyone else, cleans up her mess (you'd be surprised how many people don't) and to top it off she makes truly wonderful work. I felt a sudden weight. How could I possibly do justice to an urn for such a huge task, being part of a remembrance for someone this woman had loved dearly? I honestly felt there was no way I could do it. It was too much. I had made a dozen or so urns and it's one of my favorite shapes to mess around with (I don't do many because they tend to take a lot of time and I am a hobbyist).

I threw a porcelain urn. Wide at the foot, with a waist and the shoulder came back out to the width of the foot. Smooth lines. Feminine. I threw a lid that while fitting the urn was round-ish. I turned the urn over to my studio mate. She does wonderful glaze paintings and wanted to do the glaze herself. As she should. I haven't seen the pot nor her since. I truly hope it's what she wanted.

This leads me to today. My fiance has been telling me I should make and sell urns. She works at a vet. She ses animals day nearly everyday. Animals that are loved as members of the family. Many are cremated. Today she called me with a request to make an urn for the ashes of a 7lb cat. I agreed. Upon telling a co-working of my grim new comission that co-worker asked me to make an urn for her boyfriend's dog's ashes... he has them in a plastic bag inside a plain wooden box.

So ... urns... grim but maybe a needed side job. Maybe a little comfort to those who have lost someone dear.

As I get close to completing these urns I'll post photos.

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