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Interview with LA ceramic artist Gina Zycher

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    What brought you to ceramics? How long have you been a ceramicist? What do you enjoy the most about the process of making your pieces?

    I took ceramics classes in high school and had fun with it, but I didn’t continue after I left for college.  As soon as I took my first class for throwing​ a few years ago​ (which I hadn't done in high school and was completely new to me) I was completely hooked and in love with the medium in a way that I had never been before. The fact that you can take a wet lump of dirt and turn it into whatever you want – something beautiful, strange, functional, what have you – is incredible and still blows my mind five years after I sat down at the wheel for the first time. I also love how meditative the process can be, especially hand building, which I got back into about a year after learning to use the potter’s wheel. You can really get lost in what you’re doing, which is a huge deal for someone like me who can’t turn her brain off most of the time.

     

    I’m sure as an artist/craftsperson, you draw inspiration from many sources. Can you tell us about what inspires you and where you draw inspiration from to create your pieces?

    I get inspiration from lots of places, and I think this is because I’m pretty obsessed with pottery so I’m always thinking about what my next piece will be while I’m out in the world. We have wild parrots in my neighborhood, and I was looking at them a few days ago and thinking about how I’d love to try to mimic their coloring on one of my pieces – they’re mostly green with a little pop of red on their heads. I’m always seeing the most amazing textures on tree trunks and I even spotted a design on someone’s side gate that I thought could make a really cool looking vase.

     

    How long have you been teaching ceramics? What about teaching ceramics delights you?

    I’ve been teaching ceramics for a little under a year now, and I have to admit that the thought of teaching was really intimidating when my friends Mel and Ana, who started Still Life Ceramics, first suggested it. Being able to teach a new skill to someone requires such a great understanding of the subject and I didn’t know if I was ready. I’m so thankful that Mel and Ana believed in me and gave me a little push, because teaching has been so rewarding. I just love how I can show all of my students the same technique and watch each of them create something unique and completely their own. Learning ceramics was truly life-changing for me, and watching my students discover the medium and get excited about making things like I was (and still am!) is the coolest thing ever.

     

    Gina is wearing the Tallulah off the shoulder tee in Black and the Maude rib turtleneck in Forest.

    Gina's ceramics can be found at www.ginazycher.com. Instagram @glittermountain

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