Monday, February 14, 2011

Day away from Limerick Leads to another Potter, and the Sea

So, Mary and I hit the road this morning and headed toward Doolin, a small port town in County Clare where you catch a ferry to the Aran Islands, and where you can also catch some great traditional music.

On our way, we stopped in Corofin to see if we could trace my Irish roots back further than 1729 when apparently Thomas Mahan (McMahon?) came over, but the lady behind the desk at the heritage center in Corofin said records weren't kept that far back.

So, we decided to stop in at a pottery shop directly across the street where Yvonne McEnnis (left) has been making functional pottery for the past 30 years.

Her modest workshop, inside an old thatched cottage she renovated, was filled with mugs, teapots, creamers and bowls simply glazed and decorated. She was getting ready to do some slip-casting of some larger pieces when we walked in.

When she heard I was from Seagrove, NC, she was excited. I asked her if I could throw a pot, and she decided she wanted me to throw a utensil jar. Perfect, I thought, as my son Levi and I had just finished throwing several hundred preserve jars for the Uwharrie Mountain Run before Mary and I came to Ireland.

So, here's pictures of the first pot I threw in Ireland, followed by some more Irish birds and a short film of breaking waves at the base of the cliffs around Doolin in the afternoon sun. It was a perfect day.

Cheers, and Happy Valentine's Day everyone.

Wedging in front of the old fireplace

The clay was some very fine dark clay

I managed to throw the shape even though
her wheel was very different than I'm used to
and I didn't have my usual tools.

I don't know why I'm attracted to the black
birds of Ireland. I'm not sure of the name of these,
but they looked lovely against the blue sky. Maybe
it was the blue sky I was in love with.

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