Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The 327th good thing about Lagos: a nice guy making good ceramics

Charles is a potter who is enjoyed and supported by many of the expatriate women in Lagos.  He's from Ghana and got a leg up on his business by the American Women's Club and by some expat women individually.  I don't know if they still do, but I know women who have shipped in materials for his glazes when he couldn't get what he needed here.  He's a nice guy who really appreciates and recognizes the help and his business has grown into quite a good enterprise.  I stopped by his place of business one day to pick up some pots that I had asked him to make for me and he gave me and my driver a demonstration of his work.  He's also started doing classes for people to come and try their own hand at making a pot. 
I've always been amazed at how easy potters make it seem to build a smooth pot on a wheel.  I've tried it and it really isn't very easy.
He also has someone now who is making glass beads for jewelry and the decorative strands they have here.  It was interesting to see how these are made, because I certainly have been an regular customer of glass beads here.

 Here's his little shop.  He makes pots large and small and lamps and dishes -- decorative as well as functional items.  He really does quality work.  He makes dishes with green glaze or a beautiful dark blue glaze.  When I'm buying for myself, I get the green glaze. 

Here's some examples of things I've bought from him.  I asked him to make the berry bowl for me, as I saw one in the States and I thought it was nice, to have a bowl with holes so berries could breathe and not get moldy.  I don't have fresh berries much here, but I thought it would be useful back in the States.  The little shallow bowl is a nice size for a dessert dish.  Some of his dishes are glazed on the outside and some are left unglazed, but decorated with designs.  If any of my US friends are interested in getting some of Charles' pottery, let me know what you want and I will bring it back for you when I come at Christmas.  His ceramics are quite reasonably priced, and I'd love to give him more business.


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