I became an artist because I loved the clay. I liked throwing on the wheel ,striving for control of the material and perfecting a form. I approached ceramics the same way I did music or gymnastics- practice, practice, practice. The artistic part came later.
I continue to work in clay because it has so many options for expression. I can strive to perfect a form, a glaze, or a person’s expression and features. It’s like music; constant variations of theme and style, and always-practice, practice, practice .
I throw my pots on the wheel or handbuild them from slabs of earthenware clay. After drying to leather-hard I draw and carve on the surface. I My images are from nature, leaves and plant forms that twist and wind their way around my shapes. Everything is organic and flowing. I like to garden and love nature and this is reflected in my work. My pots are finished with layers of underglze color, influenced by my pastel drawings, and then finished with a metallic glaze wash.
I have been on the faculty of the Des Moines Art Center for over 20 years. It is so satisfying to give people the technique and knowledge so that they may become confident in their abilities to make something unique or beautiful. My inspirational message in teaching is “You can do this!”. My message in my work is “Respect the Earth”.
I have been a potter for thirty five years and am now also working with pastels. I garden for a hobby. I guess I like dirt.