Being a studio artist can be pretty lonely. I teach, so I am not lonely (lacking interaction with people), but my creative/critical side is lonely. That is why I seek out other potters/artists online and in books and museums. I read blogs, search Google images, check in with online galleries, buy books, subscribe to magazines. Now, I can even listen to a podcast!
Brian R. Jones is a ceramic artist from Portland, Oregon. He makes functional and sculptural clay work. Last year he began recording conversations with other artists and posting them online via an iTunes podcast. The conversations are not interviews but a discussion about art. Listening to it, complete with airplanes flying overhead and interrupting children, makes me feel as though I am a fly on the wall listening to fellow potter/artists chit chat about what makes them tick. Lucky for me, Mr. Jones was able to attend the American Pottery Festival in Minneapolis last year and got to interview two of my favorite potters: Linda Arbuckle and Simon Levin. Recently he has posted a two-part discussion with Lisa Naples, another of my faves.
Visual influences abound in our current online culture to help me see the unlimited possibilities in pottery, but this can be overwhelming. Sitting in on a conversation, however, seems to pull me in from gawker to participant. It unleashes a more critical thought process to help focus my attention on what I need to consider when taking that next step to better pots.
I encourage all clay peeps, potters or sculptors, novices to professionals, to listen in on the Jonescast to be part of the conversation.
I LOVE THE WESTERN CAROLINA MOUNTAINS!
Folks have lived in these mountains for centuries. Some locals here in Bryson City can trace their families way back – part of this county (Swain) is in the Cherokee nation, which means some folks here trace their family back before America was colonized. With such a long history, there are many stories of people that have lived here. Two wonderful ladies, Doreyl Ammons Cain and Amy Ammons Garza, want to make sure those stories are told and heard. Their podcast, Stories of Mountain Folk, contains short interviews with folks that live in the mountains of Western North Carolina – folks that are traditional mountain folk and new mountain transplants. Everyone that lives in these mountains has a story – and if their story contributes to the art, culture and place of Western North Carolina, Doreyl and Amy are out to catch that spirit – their story. I am proud to have been asked to be one of the Mountain Folk and proud that my husband, Jeff, was also interviewed about his banjo making.
Stop and have a listen to my interview and stories of other mountain folk, including my husband, Jeff Delfield. Each is just 1/2 hour long and pretty enjoyable! Before I come on, here an interview with Jenny Johnson of the Swain Center for the Arts, too. There are plenty of artful and crafty things happening in Swain County, my hometown!
Learn more about Amy and Doreyl’s mission to Catch the Spirit of Appalachia.