Impressions from Art featuring Katherine Moes

Why did you choose this medium for expressing your creativity?

My first attempt at creative work was with Science Illustration. I did a certificate at the University of Washington and am a pretty decent illustrator. However, what I quickly realized is that this form of illustration is very left brain. I am constantly thinking of correct proportions, highlights, shadow, matching colors, and textures. My illustrations were nice but the work itself was taxing to me. Not really life giving. A year after doing my science illustration program I felt a really strong desire to work with clay again. I did two years of ceramics in high school but hadn’t touched it since. Once I got my hands in clay again everything felt right. My hands remembered so much of what I had done in high school, it was amazing. And my mind and soul found peace and creative energy within the medium of clay. Clay is very grounding, it brings us present while also tapping into the greater human experience of those who have worked with clay throughout history. Right now I refer to clay as my lover, and I hope it keeps this title for a long long time.

What sort of lasting impression do you hope your work will have on other people?

I feel I am still in the honeymoon stages of my work. I have no idea what lasting impression I would hope for people to have of my work. If I would let myself dream I would hope people could see authenticity in what I make and also a real love relationship between myself and my creations. I picture myself as an old woman with large gnarly pots to match my well-worn hands.

But what I have also come to realize is the impression I have on others, simply by pursuing my passion. I have received love and encouragement from friends, especially other mom friends, who have seen me pursuing my creative dreams while also raising kids. They have told me that my pursuit of my passion has left an impression on them and has reminded them that they too will find their way and their passion after the years of raising young kids has passed. Maybe my “works of art” won’t make a big impact on a great number of people but if I can remind some people to take the time to tap into their passions and find the life-giving energy which comes from that, well, then that is a beautiful thing.

What is your best advice for someone interested in your field?

My best advice would be to relax, let go, and explore. One thing I love about clay is that you can recycle it. This simple fact has allowed me to relax and let go as I’m building. I am more willing to explore and try new shapes because I know if it doesn’t work out I can just recycle it and turn it into something new. We all have hopes and plans for what the finished piece will look like but sometimes it just doesn’t work out as planned. I would encourage those interested in clay to let go a bit of their control/ego, relax, and give things a try. Every new thing you attempt will teach you something about the process that you will remember and learn for next time.



Words & Photographs by Anna Peters | Pottery & Shop by Katherine Moes