Here’s our full interview with Colleen Conlin in her own words:
Originally Published 06/01/2023
How did you get started creating your pieces?
I began developing my style and creating a line of work while studying ceramics at the University of Arizona. Once the pottery started piling up I decided it was time to try and sell them.
What’s the favorite part of your work/what you make?
Wheel throwing — It is my happy place. It’s rhythmic, physical, and messy.
How do you express your creativity through your work?
By creating new products and experimenting with new methods and glazing techniques. I really flex my creative muscles when customers request custom pieces. I enjoy creating unique limited run and one-off pieces.
What brings you joy?
Opening the door to my studio, putting Tom Waits on the stereo, and throwing pots.
What challenge(s) have you overcome?
Creating a business for my art. I had to expand my skillset to include accounting, social media, sales, shipping and all the other miscellaneous parts of running a business.
Anything exciting in the works/coming up for you?
In addition to my pottery I create custom mosaic art with my studio partner Gail Roberts. Our next big project is at a non-profit in Tucson. We are creating a large scale donor mural that will consist of metal, clay mosaic artwork and clay donor plaques.
What do you wish for the world?For us to be kinder to it and to each other. I would love to see the world come together to end this pandemic. I hope soon so we can go back to interacting with one another safely and sharing our lives.
Artist Update 04/02/2023
At the beginning of my ceramic career I worked out of whatever space I had available. It’s amazing what you can create with just a storage closet and a front porch!
After many years of hard work in small spaces my partner and I bought a house and built out an attached studio, where finally I have a sizable space that is customized to my needs as a ceramic artist. Our new house is closer to the Tucson mountains, so often I peer out my window and see javelinas and bobcats trapping through the yard. The wildlife inspires my desert themed artwork — though I could do without the rattlesnakes in my kiln shed.
In this new space I continue to create wheel thrown pottery and mosaics. Recently, I have been working on larger scale donor murals. My most recent project is for the Reid Park Zoo. I love these larger projects because they stretch my skills as a ceramic artist, designer, and sculptor.
We here at Made couldn't be more thrilled for Colleen! Check out all the new goodies from Crooked Tree Ceramics. You help make the dreams of our artists come true!