Thursday, December 17, 2015

vases are people too

Photographing a group of new pieces is always interesting—getting to know who they are and seeing how they fit together. I had placed 18 porcelain vases on my dining room table ready to take their pictures; after a couple of days of hanging out with them I felt like I was trying to organise the guests in a wedding party… All those colours and heights and styles—lining up, fitting in, and settling the kids down in front. And then there are all the other shots - like the small family group caught in a candid moment, the teenager poignantly standing apart from their parents.

Vases have a very special place in my affections and my need to make (more on this below). Thanks to the Citizen’s of Craft web-site for helping to get the word out that “Vases are people too”. I knew I wasn’t alone :)

The vases are available from the excellent Bluerock Gallery in Black Diamond, Alberta.
The Family Photo 2015 - Probably Unrepeatable.
Porcelain vases, tallest is 11 inches. Christine Pedersen. 2015.

The Teenager, With Mum & Dad.
Porcelain vases, translucent glaze inside, unglazed exteriors. Christine Pedersen. 2015.

Vases and me: I love my garden, and I love to walk outside on a fresh morning to cut flowers and arrange them in a vase that I have made. But that’s only part of the story because for most of the year there are no flowers to cut. For most of their lives vases will stand empty.

I find that vases have a habit of moving into a spot and expressing themselves. Light falls around them, they cast shadows, their outline changes the dynamic of a space. I place them based on their size and feeling: a smallish narrow-necked vase on the shelf in front of me near the sink (one of the ‘kids’), it only takes a few stems or a handful of herbs to occupy my gaze. A large dignified full-bellied form rests over in a corner, with tall reeds and berried stalks framed by the window behind. An unglazed porcelain vase (like ‘The Teenager’) all pure white, seems to burn in the sunlight or to hold onto the dusk in its deeply textured surface.

Some vases will wait to be discovered—they are quiet and thoughtful, deep rivers; and then there are those that yell “hello!” the moment my eye greets them. I have family and friends like that too.

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