I love the limitless possibilities of clay and the way it can take many forms. I make most of my pottery by hand building, rather than working on a wheel.
Maybe it’s working with such an earthy medium that I feel a connection to all the potters who've gone before me. I feel it stretch back to the long dead potters whose potsherds I dug up when on archaeological digs (there is no thrill quite as great as finding an ancient fingerprint when you brush away the earth!) and to those whose work, from the medieval to the modern, I’ve seen in museums and galleries. I realise now I soaked up such a lot through looking which now comes out in my making.
It took me quite a while to get back to making ceramics after the initial experience in the school art room. In the meantime, I never stopped making things; knitting, stitching, drawing, but never considered myself an artist. Then one day, around six years ago, I thought “if not now, then when?!” This realisation coincided with that year’s local Artweeks, I found a brilliant pottery teacher via her exhibition and I’ve been going to classes ever since. I can’t imagine a life without clay now! I’ve learned a huge amount in the past few years - I love my involvement in a craft which is so wide ranging and exciting with ever more to learn.
When I’m not at my day job I work from my “studio” - which is actually my commandeered dining room. Last year we installed my kiln (it has its own little silver shed outside) which means I can now fire my work at home too. My dining room studio is a small space, but being able to make pieces at home is brilliant, I have a view of our tree surrounded garden and it’s often an inspiration to me.
Ceramics making allows me to express my creativity in a way that suits me - I work in an organic way, with very sketchy sketches and minimal plans. I’ll have an idea in mind, and go with the flow and see what appears – this can lead to some great pieces (and also, I admit, some which go straight into the clay reclaim bin!). I didn’t ever think I’d be where I am now as a maker, and look forward to growing as a potter over the years to come. I hope my love for the craft comes through in my ceramics.
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