The clay sits on the wheel, smooth, round, and perfectly centered. But there is a problem. The lump is solid through and through. There is no opening that will turn the heavy lump of clay into a bowl, a cup, or a vase. At this point in the process, there is too much in the way, and it is of no use at all. So the wheel spins and the potter gets to work, resting his left hand lightly on the outside of the clay, using his right hand to press into the top of the clay. He moves the extra clay aside; he opens up an empty space. As the clay is opened up, new room is made available to hold good things.