My journey with clay began twenty years ago when I was first exposed to the medium through an elective in high school. My connection to the clay was immediate. My early ceramic work was sculpting, pertaining heavily to female form. I did not begin my love affair with the wheel until 2000 while attending Chemeketa Community College.
I continued my education and focus in ceramics at Western Oregon University where I received my Bachelor of Science in Studio Art in 2005. My Professor Don Hoskinson’s wife Cindy, also a potter was a stay at home mom/ ceramic artist—I immediately realized that someday I wanted that lifestyle for myself. I wanted to be able to continue my craft and be at home with my babies. So in the years since graduation I have moved to the coast, started a family, and with great support from my husband I have continued my work with clay.
In the beginning it was about female form—and now as I work primarily with wheel thrown vessels it continues to be largely about form. I find myself on a constant quest to achieve beauty in terms of proportion. Bottles, vases and vessel forms seem to encompass endless possibilities and I find myself constantly wanting to explore and re-explore how proportion affects the feel of a pot.
My pottery has also developed a reputation for being light weight. Many times people will comment that the pieces weigh much less than they expected. It is intentional. Pottery is a three dimensional art form that is often picked up. I find it very important to recognize that the feel of a piece is inherent to its proportion or how the viewer interprets the piece through touch. This is a consideration that many other art forms need not take into account and is an element of pottery that I try to be conscience of in my work.
This particular body of work was a study of how form and the raku process affect one another. I have loved raku firing from my first exposure. Being able to witness the chemical reactions that take place to the glaze as it is being raku fired adds a thrilling element to the process that is absent when a kiln is turned on, shut and opened when the process is over.
In raku no two pieces come out the same. There is always an element of wonder and surprise as the end product is revealed. I enjoy taking forms that have been duplicated for thousands of years and adding a finish that will forever be unique to that piece. The endless possibilities always inspire more curiosity.
The actualization of all the parts of my being communicating and physically transforming a thought into an object is a precious gift from God. Clay is my passion, when I am actively working I wake up early and go to bed late with fantasies of clay on my mind. When pieces come successfully out of the kiln I get a smile on my face that just won’t go away, when I throw, I lose track of time and feel mesmerized, it just makes me happy! This happiness has always been something I have wanted to share with other people.