In early years I was always drawn towards the arts.
Once finished secondary school I went on to study cookery at Cordon Bleu school, Auckland, then dressmaking and fashion design, working for a period in the Theatre, making costumes at the Royal New Zealand Ballet and Mercury Theatre and made-to-measure garments in the fashion industry.
In 1988 I moved to Dunedin to study for three years at Otago School of Fine Arts, Diploma of Fine Arts majoring in ceramics with Michael Trumic, Neil Grant and Lawrence Ewing as tutors along with many visiting overseas and NZ potters.
In 1991 I established a business, Craftworks Studio, in Cromwell Historic Precinct, Central Otago and continued through to 2002, exhibiting widely in the South Island.
In 2003 moved to Otaki, began teaching at Otaki Pottery club, tutoring night classes, and established Jailhouse Pottery in a new studio at home.
Since 2006 I’ve been tutoring/supervising the Diploma of Ceramic Arts, distance/online from Otago School of Fine Arts, latterly from my home studio.
I continue to exhibit frequently throughout New Zealand, attend workshops and conferences and stay in touch with the local pottery community.
I take inspiration from my past experiences as a seamstress, patternmaker, printmaking, painter, cook and mother, and incorporate it into the work.
I continue to be drawn to clay, although other arts such as painting, pastels, drawing and sewing, diverting me away, but feedback into clay work and glazes. I also take great inspiration from my surroundings, garden, beach, river, native bush and natural beauty of the Kapiti Coast and Central Otago.
As my work is mainly vessel based, I am always aware of the importance of the way a piece functions, not only visually but how it feels in your hands, its weight and the texture of the surface and glaze. Food being central to our lives, I want a vessel to be complimentary and part of our day-to-day life.
I work in a variety of clays and fire with electric and gas kilns. Combining techniques of throwing, altering, slab and hand building.
I am interested in developing interesting surfaces, by using coloured slips, stamps and textures from prints and then layering on the glaze, to bring vibrancy to the finished piece. This plays a large part in terracotta and 1200C work.
Alternatively I enjoy making high fired, clean, simple work from porcelain and then allowing the firing to influence the clay and glaze colour.
Each series of work is very different and allows me to play with ideas and technique which is a challenge and a joy.