“My medium as an artist ranges from ceramics to painting to photography. With my clay business, Clay Table, all of those mediums sort of combine into one.
With ceramics, I approach my work more utilitarian. I keep it simple, keep it clean, so people who may not know much about ceramics can still approach the work. It doesn’t seem too convoluted or highfalutin for them to go up and approach it and try to use that work. I look at the surface as a painter. The photography style kind of comes in, too, in how I shoot my products for selling online and social media and that sort of thing.
The style of my work is utilitarian – trying to make functional ware that has an artful feel to it. I approach the surface trying to come up with different unique glazes, bright colors, a lot of versatile surfaces. Every form that I make, I hand carve the foot to kind of give it my signature finish.
I’m an art teacher at Wawasee High School. I teach most of the subjects, anything from intro to art to painting, drawing, ceramics, and photography. I love teaching. This is my 9 to 5, and then I do my clay business on the side.
I was always interested in clay as a hobby. I always really loved ceramics, but I was definitely more of a photographer and painter. I thought that clay was just more fun, sort of recreational art. Then I joined my friend Luke Wright at MudLOVE Pottery down in Warsaw. I was actually his first employee around 2011. That kind of fueled my love for clay. Building that company from sort of the ground up – it was just two dudes in a dusty garage around a table when it started – to upwards of 40 to 50 employees in a matter of three years, that was a massive, life-altering experience. It pointed me in the direction of clay and the power of clay and how it can connect with people.
Goshen is a city that celebrates its artists and seems to be open to continuing to develop its creativity. There are constantly people who are fighting to keep creativity and art education and art opportunities in the city, which I think is amazing. Commerce follows art – you see all these great businesses popping up. I’ve definitely been inspired by Goshen.”