I have been spending some time trying to develop the carved theme into new shapes. After the last one cracked as it dried, I thought I could use it as a maquette (a sort of preliminary model) before it got recycled. I looked at it and noticed that if I cut through the top, following the shape of the ribs, then I would get a bowl shaped vase. The maquette showed the shape had potential, so I threw a vase and got carving. To be honest, it was a bit of a struggle! For some reason, the carving process was harder than the long necked shapes - even though you can feel the inside and so judge better the depth of the piece. I still don't know why - it might be just practice - or maybe I was just low on confidence and clumsy. Anyway, had you been a fly on the wall, you would have heard quite a lot of teeth grinding and the occasional wtf. The louder voice in my head kept saying "its rubbish and you might as well give up and save a day's work". I am glad I didn't listen. Since a long time ago, I learned the loud voice is unreliable. Quite often, its just venting like an angry teenager, so its best to act the parent and regard it as just that. All the way along with this piece, the quieter voice (the one that feels like "instinct") told me very plainly to keep going. So here is the piece - not quite finished, but nearly. Its definitely a beginning rather than an ending but I am suddenly excited because this piece is a sign post. It shows me that the idea has possibilities beyond "parsnips" and can be adapted to branch out into other forms. The holes offer a whole new load of possibilities. How about a coiled parsnip which looks as if the neck is unravelling? I am going to give it a go. Watch this space. .