Ian took his first pottery course in 1975 and has been involved with clay ever since. He has taught children, teen and adult classes and workshops in both Alberta and British Colombia and in Mexico. His work consists mainly of functional ware. In addition to throwing on the wheel, he uses a slab roller and an extruder to allow greater flexibility and variety in his work. He has served to promote ceramic arts in several organizations, Parkland Potters Guild in Alberta, Nanaimo Potters Guild, Arrowsmith Potters Guild and the Tozan Cultural Society.
I had never considered myself “artistic”, but I always felt the need to be creative. Over the years I tried many crafts, and although I enjoyed them, nothing really captured and held my interest. When I took my first pottery class, I knew I’d found what I’d been searching for. At the time I was working full time as a shopping centre manager, so it was difficult to find the time for my new hobby. I retired from my job in 2004, and started working on pottery as often as I could. In 2007 I joined Pyromania Pottery, and my life as a full time pottery began!
I love creating functional pieces of pottery….things people will use in their daily lives. I’m inspired by the thought of someone enjoying their morning coffee in one of my handmade mugs because it feels just right in their hand! My work tends to reflect the beautiful nature that surrounds us on Vancouver Island, such as starfish and the Great Blue Heron. I also love teaching classes and sharing my love of pottery with others.
I discovered ceramics as a student at the Emily Carr College of Art and Design in Vancouver, BC. It wasn't until my retirement and empty nest that I found the time to return to this art form. I love ceramics, it offers a unique opportunity to create art that gets used every day, in all the things we do to make a home for ourselves.
Initially, my interest was in form and colour. I focused on wheel thrown pots and experimenting with glaze chemistry in my home based half baked ceramics studio. Recently, I think like many people during the last two years, I found myself wanting to strengthen my connection to nature. Working in my garden, watching things grow and mature, I started drawing and using those images in my pottery. People have always used nature as an inspiration for art, especially in past less technologically advanced times. I like the idea bringing that back into my work. As well, I'm hand building my pots, appreciating the experiences of this new technique.
As of August 13, 2021, the Train Station Pottery Shop online store has closed. Please visit our shop at 600 Alberni Hwy, Parksville, BC Canada V9P 1J9 to browse our selection of locally made pottery.
I began my pottery journey by taking a wheel throwing and then a hand-building class at Arrowsmith Potter's Guild in 2010. I was hooked and since then I have been an active volunteer at the Guild. Raku firing is also a technic that I was able to learn at the guild.
Many of my pieces are incorporated with local drift wood and are available for purchase at the Train Station Pottery Shop.
Visit the Train Station Pottery Shop at 600 Alberni Hwy. to view Brian's creations.
I have been throwing pots for over twenty years. After retiring nine years ago as a music teacher I have had much more time to spend in my pottery studio. And I have had a lot more time to pot these past 14 months with the COVID stay-at-home policies. The pots in my picture show the different techniques that I have been working on during this COVID year as I watched Zoom webinars taught by potters from across North America. From Canada I took Zoom classes from Sarah Pike and Naomi Clement with their unique textures and layered surfaces. From the United States I took Zoom classes with Deb Schwarzkopf on combining thrown and hand built ceramics, Catie Miller with her monoprint colored slip transfers, Lorna Meaden on baskets and lidded jars and Diana Fayt showing her tyvec stencil techniques.
I have been an active member of the Arrowsmith Potters Guild since I joined in 2008. It is nice to be around so many talented potters. I have been on the Board for many of those years and now contribute as the membership coordinator and sell my pottery in the Train Station Pottery Shop.