collapsed. Too fast. She hadn’t seriously thought she could save it, but she had quite liked the odd sculptural shape she had created. She mashed the clay up in her hands and threw it back on the wheel.
“You shouldn’t re-use that,” one of her classmates piped up. “It’ll be full of air now. It’ll blow up in the kiln if you re it.” Laura smiled sheepishly. “You really think I’m going to manage to make this into a cup on my second attempt?”
“Your centring is not bad for a rst-timer, you just need to ease o the pedal: slower is better.” Laura smiled inwardly as her critic got back to her work. She went to get some new clay.
The rst couple of days were spent repeatedly throwing clay on the wheel and repeatedly throwing her work in the bucket of clay to be wedged and recycled. She was getting there, as there were now a small number of bowls and cups she thought she may keep lined up on the shelf, but it was a humbling experience. They were very clearly the work of a beginner, their walls thick and with feet that needed trimming. The days were a repetitive cycle, a rhythm that was becoming automatic. By the end of the second day, she felt a migraine coming on from her unblinking concentration. This was too hard. Was she doing well? Did it matter? She’d start again tomorrow with a clear head.
Before she’d even entered the door the next morning, Laura could hear the gentle hum of the motor and smell the damp earthiness. Her pace quickened. She was officially hooked and couldn’t wait to feel the yield of the clay beneath her hands again. Tying her apron as she sat down, she now found comfort in the familiar routine, the sense that this was ‘her’ wheel. While Da Vinci had practised drawing the