Although it is universal that anyone who has loved another will experience grief at their death, how and when that journey takes place is done in a myriad of individual ways. For those who are left with cremated remains, ceramic art offers a number of creative expressions that can bring meaning and peace.

It is possible to add such material directly to clay, allowing a loved one to fashion something creative as a remembrance or to allow a potter to make something for the loved ones. Directly participating in such a project can be cathartic for those involved, either speaking of the meaning of the artifact being made or sharing memories of the deceased. As a pastoral counsellor for over 38 years, I have witnessed the potential of significant healing when grief is addressed in art making.

For those reluctant to handle cremated remains, one could either watch the artist make something for them while sharing thoughts of the loved one, or directing the creation of the project and allowing the artist to work on their own until completion, then presenting a finished product to the bereaved.

I have made memorial urns in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors and number that contain the cremated remains but do not have the cremated remains in the clay or glaze. There are those concerned that the object created with the remains in the material might someday break or be spoiled. For such memorial urns I usually seal the lid with epoxy if the remains are contained in the vessel. Sometimes folk enjoy having a handmade vessel to contain the remains that are then dispersed at a special place or in nature. The vessel becomes a keep sake of the moment and the person's last rites.

There are lots of options. I would be honored to work with anyone at any level to assist their grief process with the creation of ceramic art. Fees will be negotiated on an individual basis but usually run about $200 per hour for all costs and material.