The #1 agricultural export from British Columbia is weed. They also have a stash of mighty fine J’s in the pottery world out there on the Wet Coast and they just happen to be friends of mine. I’m off next week for a month in the Paradise of beautiful BC and I’m going to be visiting four smokin’ j’s ( Judi, Janet, Jan, and Jefferson Cathi. First of all, I’m going to see Judi Dyelle who has been smokin’ since she graduated from Ontario College of Art and then as a young 20-year-old went off for a couple of years to study in Japan with Shimaoka. Judi has walked the walk her entire life. There is porcelain piled high all over her resume.
Same goes for long time friend Jan Phelan also a grad of Ontario College of Art. Jan really entered the scene with a big splash in 1984 when she was awarded the commission to make dinnerware for Canada’s Governor General and she has made superb work ever since. Judi and Jan have always made art for a living. Tenacity, courage, stubbornness with a heaping helping of creativity.
Cathi J was a career nurse but as long as I can remember she has smoked up the soda kiln and been a fine maker and sought after workshop presenter. I am going to wind up the trip at Cathi’s making some pots and enjoying living on the gorgeous Cowichan River.
Janet Zadra and I have met in Italy, and here at Pinecroft. She has the fever but not severe----yet!. She is an engineer that is taking a 6-month sabbatical to try to learn to inhale pottery. If the smoke takes effect I will try to talk some sense into her and tell her to keep her real job. If she quits her real job then she has what it takes- tenacity, courage and stubbornness. I too have these qualities with the added bonus of a strong back and a weak mind.
What excites me about these smokin’ J’s is their dedication, commitment, and yes their stubbornness. We have a lot in common and I can’t wait to see them all. I am one lucky bugger!
Come to think of it there is my friend Jen Drysdale and my grand daughter Julia. What is it with creativity and smokin’ J’s?