a hard frost this morning, rapidly being dispelled by the sun; I may have just lost my peaches, as the tiny peach tree has been in full blossom for over a week – time will tell. next year I will be prepared with fleece.

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it’s looking okay at this point, the frost, if any, had melted and there were just drops of moisture on it. the sun just about to catch it.

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the hellebores in the shade with frost edging their leaves

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the cowslips looking unhappy, but they are tough natives and the sun will warm them up and uncurl them.

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the two blackthorns are in full blossom, and there looks to be a lot on the damsons this year; they and the plum tree will soon be in flower.

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on Saturday I went to the launch of my friend Nic Collins’ exhibition at the Goldmark Gallery – so many beautiful pots. the catalogue essay by David Whiting exactly described why I love Nic’s work – “kindness” – “a softness of execution” “qualities of relaxed precision” “prominent shell and wadding scars ¬†become important components of form”.

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just as the aged crackle and the scars become components of the form of this ancient Korean piece from the sixteenth century; it has the same tenderness as Nic’s work.

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the running ashmelt too enhances the softly thrown jars with their strong throwing marks.

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I threw restraint to the winds and indulged in a very small piece, this guinomi thrown off the hump in Meeth clay, which is a red Devon clay and fires black in Nic’s kiln. I am taking part in his woodfiring workshop¬†this August; the remaining two huge (for me) flagons will go into his hogback nicely, they are small pieces by comparison to some of Nic’s;

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this huge platter made partly in an earth mould and taking four people to get it into the kiln is inspirational – not just for its size, but for its technique and Nic’s attitude in making something so huge and difficult. I love risky work.

now I am back in my workshop for three weeks; lots of work to make which can be fired when I get back from Spain in May – and the memory of Nic’s work to inspire me – softer and looser is the way to go …