For those that have been reading our blog for a while now, you'll know that last year we launched a section of our blog called Creative Encounter where we interview creatives from around the world. We were fortunate to have been able to get to know some talented designers, makers and bloggers including Cassie from The Veda House, Fiona of Craft Hunter, and many others.
It's the part of our blog we're probably most passionate about - sharing creative talent, getting to know fellow small business owners and hopefully broadening the community. We're now hoping to bring you Creative Encounter twice a month and we're back this June with the lovely Anna from Arrow + Sage. Anna resides in Raleigh, NC where she also owns a studio creating beautiful ceramic wares. Her pieces are functional, hand crafted and eclectic.
1. What do you love the most about being a designer and running Arrow + Sage?
Getting to make things all the time. Opening a kiln never gets old! Pottery has its frustrations, but it’s so rewarding to work hard on something and see it through to fruition. Opening a kiln after its final firing and unloading warm ceramics is the best part.
2. Tell us about your journey to starting your business.
It just sort of happened. Art and creativity has always been part of my life. My mom’s an artist and potter, and my brothers and I were always creating growing up. I left my 9-5 in August of 2013 but I didn’t have the intention of starting a business. Once I wasn’t sitting at a desk for 8 hours a day, my mind had room to breathe and my art starting happening again. I wasn’t working with clay until December of 2013. In early 2014 people started showing an interest in purchasing my work and I transitioned an Etsy shop I’d created to focus on my ceramic work. I was actually working out of my mom’s studio during that time. I was enjoying it so much that I was commuting over an hour 3-4 days a week to get to her studio and work. Late this past fall she sold me one of her kilns for super cheap. I moved my studio to Raleigh and set up a space out of our home. Then things really got going!
3. What inspires you and your work?
Art, color, forms, patterns, and shapes I see. Once I’ve created something I love, I tend to have multiple other ideas that stem from the original concept. I don’t have time for them all! I write them down and hope I can get to them one day. Hah!
4. What does a typical day look like?
Wake up, coffee/quiet time/email, but sometimes just coffee. Walk my dog, studio, lunch, studio, sometimes make dinner but my husband and I have eaten a lot of sandwiches lately… and sometimes studio again after dinner if I’m super swamped. I’ve been trying to balance things better lately. It’s tough! I have a very supportive husband!
5. When I'm not designing I am...
In the garden, on a walk with my dog, having coffee or wine on a friend's patio, or on a trip.
6. Describe your creative space.
It’s tiny! Luckily we have hardwoods throughout our entire home, so we converted a closed off room to use as my studio. Sometimes I feel like I’m busting at the seams. But, I do my best to keep it neat and tidy which helps. It gets messy fast.
8. Right now I am most excited about…
Getting mugs back in my webshop! And summer. And this coffee I’m drinking right now. And firing the work made by the super awesome creatives that participated my first workshop. I can’t wait to see how all of their pieces turn out! They’re beautiful.
Photography by Arrow + Sage