I was 6 the first time I saw an artist on a potter’s wheel. Our art teacher’s wife was a ceramic artist and we took a field trip to her studio. We watched her throw a lump of mud on her wheel and spin it into a bowl. It looked like magic. Even though I got an Interior Design degree from Iowa State, I spent as much time as possible taking ceramics classes. Even then my work was simple. I wanted to find the right proportion, the perfect curve, and finish it with a simple color. I had many teachers over the years, and I owe the most to Greg Metzen at Ellsworth Community College, but I think the most important teacher any potter has is the clay. I wasn't good when I started. I don't think anybody sits down at a potter's wheel and turns out anything good on their first try. Or their first dozen tries. Good potters get there by going back to the wheel because it's your favorite place to be, despite the results at first.
I finally started taking my pottery seriously in 2015 when a friend convinced me to participate in a pop up craft show before I was really ready. I didn't have much work, and I'd never done a show before. Looking back on that table of pottery, I'm amazed to see how far I've come. Ever since then, I’ve been prioritizing this craft, spending more time in the studio, attending more shows, finding residencies and assistantships, and doing everything I can to turn this love into a way of life. Right now I’m the resident artist at Penn Cove Pottery on beautiful Whidbey Island. Having unlimited access to this beautiful studio on this island that is bursting with other artists has already been such a blessing. I'm able to work more than ever, and I've become a member of a vibrant and friendly community of potters and artists here in the Pacific Northwest. I have high hopes and big plans for the coming years, and this residency will allow me to reach them.