Chris Lively | Episode 279
Chris is a ceramic artist living in Virginia He has been a ceramic artist for 14 years Chris is married to his wife, Jordan, who is also an artist and they have a 4 month old baby, Cambrie. He recently publish an article titled “Winter Blues” in Pottery Making Illustrated
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How do you keep inspired?
I am just constantly involved in ceramics, looking at things, going on different gallery web pages, reading Ceramics Monthly or just picking up a book. I am kind of constantly thinking about it, whether I am walking around the mall with my wife, we were in a little tea shop, first we had to check out the tea and then we are looking at the tea pots and discussing, how does this handle work, or what do you think of this knob? These little things get me excited and give me new ideas.
How do you deal with loss in the studio?
With a hammer. ( Paul is laughing) It was kind of hard at first but I think that is one of the things that drew me to ceramics to kind of let go of things, and not to worry about it. It is just part of the process.
What is your absolutely favorite tool?
I guess my brush I use for my slip. It’s a little three-inch chip brush. You get some really nice textures with it.
Do you always apply with a brush or do you ever slop it on with your hand?
The initial slip is with my hand. The pot is put on the wheel and I’m just scooping the slip out of the bucket and slopping it on as the wheel spins. Then I am taking a brush or a rubber rib and scraping it off.
How did you get to the point where you knew what the texture and thickness of your glaze would be?
Just a lot of practice. I still don’t quite have it even though I feel am getting a lot of good feedback on the work. I feel like there is still a lot of room for improvement.
What is your favorite marketing tool?
That’s a tough one. That is probably one of my weak points. Probably Instagram. I have people at art festivals come up to me and say, Hey, I follow you on Instagram. Then they buy a cup and that is awesome.
How do you deal with criticism?
My wife gives me a lot of criticism and she is tough on me, but at the end of the day I know she is right. She makes some good points. I know criticism is not there to hurt me. It is there to help you improve and grow. If someone criticises you or is critical of your work and you are upset about it you need to look at that and know that person is trying to help you improve.
What is one thing that absolutely has to be on your bucket list and why?
That’s probably one of the best questions anyone has ever asked me. To travel to another country. To travel overseas. The furthest south I have been is Florida and the furthest north is Pennsylvania. My wife went to Japan in highschool. I think that would be a good memory.