I grab clay, I press it softly between my hands, I close my eyes and keep pressing. There comes a time when I have a crispy reaction, like electricity running thought my skin, from my chest to my hands and then the hands start moving a bit faster and without me even noticing it I get a tool, put the clay on a plaster and my hands keep moving, now using the tool with my eyes not even looking, all my body pulls towards the table and I breath slowly and deeply.
It’s after few minutes of that process going on that I first get the image in my head of what I will do, but never before I have sensed it though my entire body, and sometimes I feel my muscles posing and twisting emulating the pose that the image is showing in my mind.
I don’t know if that is normal to happen to all, but it is the only way I can start to work, whether it is on clay or another medium or even when I groom a dog, or bake a cake! If I feel this process going through my body then a special link grows between me and my work, it is the only way that my work can be *me/mine*, is not mine if it is not me first.
Last Friday it was the first time that I was delivering my work by post this year. I was biting my nails until I heard that they arrived safe, not only because I cared that they were in one piece and kept their aesthetic, but mainly because of the connection I feel with the pieces, each of them is special. They are a part of me that I am giving away, is not just a piece of raw material that was processed during weeks and baked and colored and baked again, and so on and on. All that process, all that long time involves me, my attention, my energy. Everyday that I go to the studio I check my work, I see how it is doing, how it is evolving, if it is drying good, if it’s not being stressed by external conditions (too dry or hot air, too cold or too wet).
I happen to think back that they were nothing until I pulled the clay together to be what they are, and more specially because they are dogs, and dogs are what attach me to life, and now that I have no dog I can only create them from clay. I work on my clay with the same care as I would do with my real life dogs.
When I look at my pieces, even thou they do not intend to be realistic on their look, I want them to express, to transmit as much feelings as possible. That is how they become unique, that is how they get life, that is how they are alive in their very own way.
I put in them all I have, and all I have is life.
Now that I know that the 3 pieces that I posted some days ago arrived safe to their destination I can write this, I can relax my anxiety and stop worrying about their trip. But I know that every time that I will have to put some work into a cardboard box I will go through the same feelings.