I love the medium of ceramics. There's something about it that is so free-flowing that allows you to create anything. Ceramics can be durable enough for everyday use which allows you to take the beauty of Art and use it everyday. Pottery is special in that it interacts with not only your eyes but your hands, your fingertips and your lips. It's such an intimate thing to make a mug for someone. Their fingers wrap around the handle that you have pulled off the side of the pot with your fingers. Their lips rest on the rim of a pot that you have worked with your fingers to create a soft spot for their lips. Your eyes explore the curves of the pot as well as the design and textures that you give to pot. It's in this way that pottery creeps into your life. I don't even notice it around my house half the time. I have so much of it in the cabinets, on the counters, in the bathrooms, bedrooms, even the dog bowls. It's used everywhere and I want to share that with others. I want to share the beauty of the things that influenced me; nature and the outdoors and the beauty of the colors and textures that are there. I bring the colors and textures of the environments that I experience. As a girl I visited the coast of Florida often and you will see the movement of water and fish from fishing as a child with my grandfather. You may see the rocky Coastline of Maine in some of my pottery as well as the beauty of the southwestern desert. I've been living in Arizona for 10 years now so my pots are finally showing the desert landscape. The richness of the colors, the rocky and sandy landscapes. Cactus have so many beautiful colors in them in the different tones of greens and grays and yellows as well as the bright, vibrant flowers.
I am a bit old school in my pottery process. I am influenced by classical potters as well as native potters. I follow potter's that are utilitarian and being a utilitarian potter myself I really want my work to be used and to be used often. I test out everything I make so that it may hold up to use in a busy kitchen and household. I often put my dishes in the dishwasher, microwave, and even in the oven. I do recommend preheating ovens when using the pottery in them to avoid shocking the clay and have it break. I use a gritty stoneware for my pots. This allows me a couple of things. It is sturdier for use having multiple size clay and sand grains holding it together. The gritty clay allows forgiveness in the making process by binding more easily to itself for attachments. Currently my clay choice allows me to use my studio mates pug mill. The use of a pug mill allows me to reclaim any scrap materials before it's fired and create more pieces with it since a pug mill mixes and removes air pockets in the clay. I like glazes that feel good on your hands. I tend to use very smooth, silky glazes for mugs and cups. Where a bowl allows for a rougher surface since it is not held as much and your lips do not (usually) touch it. I use a food safe liner on the inside of the dishes that I put a more matt, crystalline glazes on the outside so food doesn't stick to the glaze. I fire my pottery to one of the highest temperatures you can fire it too in a gas kiln. The gas kiln allows for an oxygen reduced environment causing the gas to find oxygen in the ceramics changing the color of the clay and glazes. It provides a richness that is very hard to duplicate in a lower temperature or electric kiln.