Clay spoke to me rather late in life. For most of my career I worked in the voluntary sector, running services for homeless people and prisoners.
In 2015, prompted by a love of Japanese ceramics, I started taking pottery classes at Morley College. The following year I took a short course in experimental ceramics at City Lit, which is where I was introduced to paper clay.
Paper clay is an amazing material. In its raw state it can be worked like wood, paper or plasticine, but it fires to a normal ceramic finish. From the moment I first encountered it, I was thrilled by the possibilities. I spent the entire course (which was mostly about slip casting) hand building chickens. At the end of the week, one of my classmates said ‘you could sell those’. It was surprisingly easy to decide to quit my job and do just that.
Pottery classes aside, my artistic training had ended in a foundation course a quarter of a century earlier. So, I set aside 2017 and 2018 to experiment, take courses in sculpture, and develop my technical skills. As my research and development period comes to an end, people are starting to buy my work online and through private commissions. The first opportunity to see my work in public will be at Roy’s People Art fair in London in November. Please do come along and say hello.