When asked when and where a person fell in love with pottery, many potters point back to a class in high school. So I thought it would be fun to go back to the roots and interview some potters that were still in that early stage of life and clay. I gathered together a couple high school students to talk about their love of clay.
Lindsey Reardon is a recent high school graduate that loves clay. Her dream is to become a doctor and keep her love as clay as a lifelong hobby.
Austen Sewell is a recent high school graduate that loves clay. His plan is to go to college and major in art and clay.
What Keeps You Inspired?
Lindsey: That’s kind of a tough question because it’s not much. When I was in high school, I got my ideas from other people. I would see their projects, see what they’ve done with it, and take their techniques and try to manipulate them and make them my own. I would prosper off of other people’s ideas. I always thought that (my classmates) had such good ideas. Then also Instagram as well.
Austen: It’s all about trying to push yourself to your limits. I was in a classroom full of other talented artists that were all experimenting with new techniques. We all just feed off each other’s energy and build off each other’s concepts. I try to get inspired by my own work and try to expand as far as I can. I’ve kind of developed my own style with surface embellishments, carving, glazing experiments.
What is a go-to tool for you?
Lindsey: My sponges is my saving grace. I love my sponges. I also like my needle tools. Those are the two tools I use the most. Because I make mostly functional work, I don’t need a lot of carving tools, or detailing tools.
Austen: I try to experiment with as many tools as I can, anything I can find. Like Lindsey said, sponges are pretty ideal when it comes to throwing. My friend Nick bought one of those sets of bent hacksaw blades for chattered trimming from Hsin, and I’ve been really getting into those. I like using rib tools to get a
nice clean surface.
Advice for the potter.
Austen: The advice my teacher gives me is look at what people around you are doing, don’t try to rush what you are doing. You need to fail to get better at things. Try to keep as much work as you can. You may not like your work before glazing, but stick with it because the glazing can turn it around. I’d say just try to stick with it. Don’t rush what you’re doing. Be really slow with clay. Take your
time when you are throwing. The slower you work, the easier it is to fix a mistake.
Lindsey: Just do what makes you happy. There’s nothing else that really matters than your happiness when you’re making something. If you aren’t happy with how you throw, or you aren’t happy with the pieces that you make, then you should start over and do what makes you happy.
Lindsey Reardon: Instagram Lindseyrae5683
Austen Sewell: Instagram DailyCeramics