Wednesday, March 18, 2009

ceramics class

An art teacher gave his two classes very different assignments. The first class was to make the most perfect, beautiful ceramic vase, while the other was to make as many vases as possible. Quality vs. quantity. At the end of the week, the teacher reviewed everyone's efforts to find a shocking result. The second class, who had made dozens and dozens of vases, had also made the highest quality vases. The first spent the majority of their time carefully planning and preparing each vase and then studying and analyzing the results, but the second class, through trial and error, eventually found the right technique, the best plaster-t0-water ratio and proper baking time as they constructed vase after vase.

What's the lesson? I think there are many lessons in this story; it's one that I use often. Today for me, this story means that sometimes the best thing to do is chuck the vase you're so carefully crafting in the oven, crank a few out, and learn as you go. Failure is not the worst thing in the world. Never trying can be.

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