NCECA 2023 Part 3 Wrap Up

March 23, 2023

I didn't really know what to expect from NCECA having never been there before. It was an amazing experience and I'm glad I went, but I'm still on the fence as to whether I would go back.

The swag from the resource hall was awesome. I have a whole lot of glazes and clays to try. I actually really hope I don't fall in love with some of the clay becase it would be very expensive to ship.

As someone who has a professional life outside of clay it was interesting walking around the resource hall with all the schools offering masters programs and residencies. I may have some fantasies about working in clay full time, but I don't see it in my near term future. This I think is actually why I'm on the fence on whether I would go again - the conference is definitely geared towards students and educators. It shouldn't be surprising - it's literally in the name. National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts.

This particular conference definitely had stuff for the hobby potter, but it wasn't geared towards the hobby potter. There were a lot of sessions about how to better be inclusive in the classroom - things which just don't apply to me. I was specifically interested in sessions about making. I wanted to learn a lot of new techniques and see how to apply them. There were a few sessions catering to that, but not nearly as many as I would like.

Shayla Marsh gave an excellent presentation on Digital Tools and the Ceramic Surface: Craft Cutters in the studio. I didn't learn a whole lot in this one, but hearing it gave me the confidence that I do actually know what I'm doing with my Cricut and just need to keep exploring more.

YoonJee Kwak demonstrated a hand built perforated vessel that gave me a ton of ideas.

Naomi Clement did an excellent handle pulling demo. I'm definitely going to be looking into her work more.

Sam Chumley did a cool demo on Underglaze Prints and Variations. There was also an excellent awkward moment with half a hot dog print that I will never forget. This actually reminds me of my one big beef with the conference. The people who were in charge of the cameras were not pottery people. They kept trying to focus on the speakers face when all we ever wanted to see was what they were doing with their hands. If I could provide one piece of advice it would be to have someone who actually understands what people want to see in charge of the cameras.

The last session we saw was with Christina Orthwein who demonstrated her Carved Slab Vessels. They were absolutely gorgeous and one of the few sessions I actually took a picture in. NCECA 2023 Part 3 Wrap Up

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