Caitlin Andrews | Episode 328
Caitlin Andrews is a part-time, self-taught potter residing in Toronto, Canada. By day, she works for the Government of Ontario as a regional grant advisor serving towns and not-for-profit organizations in the Greater Toronto Area. Her pottery has evolved over the past 6 years as she continues to improve her throwing and glaze development skills.
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When you are looking to find your voice, who do you point to as your inspiration?
Well you will see that I am doing quite a bit of slip work and spraying (?) glazes so obviously that is Steven Hill right? That is his look. I am not trying to copy that at all but it is definitely a source of inspiration. Also, Instagram is such a huge resource for me. It is like a window to the outside world for pottery.
How important is a guild for you for building relationships?
So I haven’t even gone to the first meeting. So far it is really good. So I have been out to the guild four or five times, making glazes, using their spray booth, throwing some pots, and it’s been so nice just to chat with people. They know what they are talking about and they can offer advice or recommendations. It has felt a little bit like an ego boost too because I work on my own and I am always kind of dissatisfied with my work and I go to the guild and there is people who love my work. They are just crazy about it. So it is nice to have some positive feedback.
How important is national identity for you? It seems like the Canadian potters really love being Canadian potters.
Well national identity doesn’t really mean too much to me, in terms of the States and Canada. I am not particularly proud of Canada or proud of its history or government or anything like that. But I think I am regionally proud. The name of the business I’ve created is Northbound Ceramics. It kind of refers to my origins and where I am from and where I would like to go. So I think I am proud of where I am from and the people who live in Northern Ontario.
Outside of pottery what kind of art do you identify with the most?
I don’t know. I don’t even really identify as an artist so I don’t really know. I am not really into art. (laughter)
I think if I would do anything else hands on it would be more in fine craft like woodworking or something like that.
Last question for you: How is someone who works with their hands and creativity, how is their outlook on life different from someone who doesn’t?
I don’t know, Paul. I haven’t been doing this long enough. I think personally for me when I look at my work, I always see room for improvement. So maybe that could translate to other areas of life too. Seeking that improvement and that space to develop.