beauty through heat

porcelain leaves

Last week at church camp I got to play with porcelain and leaves. A class was offered on making porcelain pieces using found natural objects. It was a lot of fun, and the picture above is of the pieces I made, a necklace and another leaf that I’m not quite sure what I want to do with yet.

It was a fascinating process because we all started out with a bunch of leaves and some liquid porcelain, and ended up with these gorgeous creations. In between, I was doubtful that the strange-looking, rough, plain white leafy-looking things that we all had would turn out to be anything close to the beautiful creations our instructor/mentor Linda had as samples. Painting-on grey-looking glaze that was supposed to turn into beautiful colours felt like an act of faith, since the glaze didn’t really look very exciting.

And then everything got fired, in a kiln, at extreme temperatures.

And it was all transformed.

Out of the kiln came these spectacular, lustrous, brightly coloured, variously beautiful pieces of art, with dark veins and glossy ridges and spectrums of colours. For me, these leaves became a metaphor for the community we created during our week at camp.

We all arrived looking fairly plain and ordinary, like those white, rough, unfinished leaves, but with some hard work together, the glaze of community life together and then the fiery heat of Divine Love, we became beautiful, shiny, new creations, each spectacular, each unique, each transformed.