Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Story of My Studio

I didn't always have a cute pottery studio as a place to exercise my creativity.


For the first seven years that I lived in Oregon, I was a potter without a studio, a man without a country, an artist without a muse. I worked at my pottery wheel in a spot behind the furnace in my parent's basement and my kiln sat outside or in the garage getting crumbly and rusty in the Northwest weather. I managed to make a few pots in these conditions but it wasn't easy.






Down the road from my house there was a little building that kind of looked like it had been there a hundred years or so.
And I secretly thought it would make a great little studio. I didn't want to have to cart unfired pots around anymore and I couldn't afford to pay any rent so I knew this building was out of the question. But I still thought about it when I drove by it. I never bothered to talk about the idea and no one knew about these thoughts except God.


Funny how sometimes He gives when we don't even ask.

One fine October day I got a call that the owner of the property where this building sat wanted the building taken off.

For free.
"Do you want it? It might make a good pottery studio."

Um... YES!

So, I turned to my husband, Mr. Dirtywrench, who never turns down something that's free, to figure out how to get that little building to our place to be my studio. He always figures this kind of stuff out and I was confident he could get it here.

So he devised a plan which started with taking the cute western facade and front wall off the building. We kept the door and the arched window. We also removed the four paned windows to keep them intact on the little trip the building needed to take.

Of course the previous occupants of the building had trashed the place and left it for us to deal with. Thanks.


Using jacks and magic wands and secret words muttered under his breath, Mr. D. prepared the building for moving.





He borrowed a flat-bed farm truck and employed the big boys to help with the job.





The building was lifted on jacks.






It got a little piggy-back ride on the truck, just barely skimming the ground.






It was quite a sight moving down the highway for a mile or so.




The building sat on the farm truck for about a month while a permanent site was prepared for it on our property.

This is one reason why I had a passel of boys. They can do things like pour concrete for me.
This job was the worst part of the whole project. Pouring and curing concrete in cold, wet weather is not ideal. Mr. Dirtywrench and our boys proved their love for me and my pottery with this.



In the mean time, winter arrived early.




Finally the concrete was ready to have a building set on it.





Isn't Mr. Dirtywrench brilliant?





The building was finished with a new front wall that included the charming arched window.
The interior walls also had to be replaced and painted.



The windows, which were so much a part of the charm of the building, were repaired and painted.



We've heard from the old-timers around here that this building has had several uses over the years, including a fishing tackle shop where tourist's fishing trips were arranged.

And...it had been a pottery studio.




Now I should have no excuses to not be a prolific pottery producer.
But I'm sure I can come up with some anyway.

1 comment:

  1. Aw, I love this story. How wonderful that you were able to save that little treasure. So, I think I'm going to need to have some more boys in order to convert the back of my barn into a studio.....but first I need to carve out some more time for lessons.....but first I need to save up some money for those lessons.....but, but, but.....this is where I stop and have to daydream about the future for a little bit.

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