Ceramics and me
If you know what I’m studying at OCAD, you’ll naturally ask: But what has ceramics to do with what you’re studying?
The obvious answer, of course, is absolutely nothing.
Which nevertheless can be disputed: If what I’m studying is a philosophy to design, and if ceramics involves design — and it does — , then there ought to be some connection between the two. Indeed, while in class we were merely talking about usability and ergonomics, in the studio we were making things with usability and ergonomics in mind and being critiqued for usability and ergonomics.
Merging ceramics and my thesis — or rather my “MRP” (major research project) as it’s technically known in my program — was never a direction I planned to take. It was in the middle of what was supposed to be my second-last semester, when I was still drifting around not knowing what to do, that Lester first made this suggestion.
This was supposed to be just a very small project, but for some reason it seems to be much more involved than anyone has expected. Documenting the process has at one point become a problem because plaster is so prone to contaminating anything it touches that I started avoiding touching anything — pen, paper, computer, and camera. Although that stage is now past, I am still living with its unwanted legacy — photographs never shot, work left unnumbered, photographs without notes, notes too sketchy to be useful, and notes never jotted down.
One other thing I regretted was passing on doing a proper respirator fit test when I was offered one during orientation because I never expected to ever need one. If you are going to art school, don’t make the same mistake as I did: Even if you think you are just going to do some digital thing, do a proper fit test anyway if one is offered to you — you never know if you’re going to need it.
It is now already past what was supposed to be my last semester, and I am still working on this project. I hope this project would inform my future practice in ceramics — yes, which means I hope I will be able to stay in the field.