Sunday, 24 October 2010

Tonnes of clay!!!

Well we didn't end up going to Suffolk on Friday because my poor Mum wasn't very well. Instead we're going to their house tomorrow for a few days - we'll have some trips out when we're there. I'm really looking forward to seeing them.

I'll be taking my Mum a little bunch of grapes from the vine that grows on my workshop, she's starting to feel a bit better I'm pleased to say.

So instead of travelling, I went to work on Saturday with Marky Mark for company. Here he is on the wheel.

I carried on making tiles for my tile order - this bird is trailed in black, on a white ground(which will become amber after glazing), with green and orange details. The orange slip is made from clay which was dug from the field outside the workshop.

This leads me on very nicely to the next, exciting picture which was taken this morning!!

This is Pete the digger driver, digging out a mass of wonderful Hollyford clay from the field outside the workshop.

And here's the clay pile - many, many tonnes, which will last me a good few years to come. I have to get a blunger installed - I've been offered one by the fantastic Mark Griffiths(he has a new site, check it out and see his wonderful pots), so a trip to Shropshire at some stage will be in order.
I'm so excited about this clay - by the time I've processed it, there's no financial benefit, but the magical thing for me, is that it's from the very place that I work - Hollyford pots made from Hollyford clay.

The tradition that I draw my influence from and the makers that I respect so much, were able to develop their trade because of readily available resources of good quality clay, so it's hugely significant to me. I have already made lots of pots from this clay in the past, it's beautiful to throw with and fires a rich, red terracotta, but I've never had this amount to work with - I hope to be in full production with native clay by the summer.

Here's the hole that's left, which will become a pond and a haven for nature, overlooked here in the foreground by Luke's sculpture. An exciting and momentous day, thank you Matt and Pete, very much.
So we're off tomorrow to my parents' place. During the week we're hoping to get to London, where I'm going to visit a pot that was a huge influence on the direction my work took, twenty five years ago when I was a student. It's in the V&A, so I hope to find it in the new ceramics gallery that opened recently. Later in the week I'm going to Cambridge to meet up with my good friends Jon and Jo, for a look at the wonderful slipware collection at the Fitzwilliam Museum.

So I'll be back soon with my holiday snaps. Bye for now


Ron said...

Hi Doug. Good news about the clay digging! Well done. Jealous of your trip to the V & A and esp the Fitzwilliam. Have fun. Hope your mom gets to feeling better.

doug Fitch said...

Hey Ron, yes, it's really exciting having that clay, although it's going to take a while to get it up and running. I'd love to see some pics of your drying set up. Will be great to see the museums, going to the Tate too. My mum's feeling a bit better today thanks, it'll be good to be there tomorrow :)

ang said...

oooh yeh!!! how fantastic all this stuff coming together a lovely new setup in your studio and what a view!! and some lovely clay to keep you busy:)) hi to mum...

Anonymous said...



Hannah said...

ace, clay a plenty! no excuse now.

Ron said...

Doug send me an email when you get ready for your clay racks etc and I'll send pics of my setup. I'll need the reminder.