Amy and I have told Joe that we like a deep dish pie plate with a 7" base, so he's measuring that with his hands. She asked for a little more depth and then for a flat edge to crimp her crust on. He's already heard this from me.
Joe had already done a teapot that Lexie directed and asked me if there was something else we'd like to see in demonstration. I am a huge fan of what he calls a flounder vase so he's throwing one here.
I am always amazed at how the cone of clay takes form. The pile of clay for Amy's pie plate started in the same form at the pile of clay for his flounder vase. The cylinder now becomes a vase.
Joe put a fan on the green piece for about ten minutes to partially dry it and then set it on this stand so he can form it into the shape he wants.
Joe's wife, Shiho, is also a potter who works in the hand-built tradtion. All these surface designs on his flounder vases are hers, as well as the wonderful little boxes and wall vases below.
Joe is brilliant with the children, all cousins. I've been here during adult classes and can tell you that he's a born teacher. He gives the kids some clay and direction and you can see how they take to it.
Some cousins were still working on their creations using extra water to keep the clay alive. They ended up with clay up to their armpits and had to be hosed down. Notice the Jenga game stacked and ready in the background. After clay, these munchkins turned those Jenga pieces into dominoes and laid out track, after track, after track before the pieces were finally reclaimed by the adults. Petie commented on a morning walk that the kids were totally entertained by wood and mud.
DS Matt, Julia and Alexia are looking at the recently-out-of-the-kiln stuff. I feel fortunate to have a potter right next door. Years ago we visited a pottery studio in Oregon and I commented that I didn't know why I was buying pottery when had a perfectly good potter right next door. The guy asked me who I was referring to, and exuberantly said - Whoa. I know Joe Winter. He works big. Joe works big.
Our grandson Noah and Joe's daughter Hiroka have visited enough to have a tentative friendship and now Noah going back to San Francisco - a poignant moment for four-year-olds.