The theme for this year is #BalanceforBetter. While we understand this is to encourage a world which is gender-balanced, something we are 100% behind, we thought we’d approach the theme from a slightly different angle. So, we’re going to talk about all the lovely women who work here, and the ways in which they balance working at The Painting Pottery Cafe with life outside of work. A balanced life, emotionally, physically, and socially is enhanced through the creative process. This balance enables a more confident empowered engagement with the world we live in. A work in progress!
Fern is a super talented illustrator both in and out of the cafe. Her style is wonderfully distinctive, and can instantly be recognised on all of our marketing, as well as some great pieces such as her Frida bowl and giant biscuit barrel, both of which can be found if you scroll to the bottom of our shop. If you want to check out more of her work, we recommend her Instagram!
Got any questions about throwing, pinching, slab building, glazing, or firing? Look no further than our resident Queen of Clay, Holly! Outside of work, Holly is developing her skills even more as she undertakes an MA in Craft. The winner of the Potclays Graduate Award 2017, she also was part of Fresh at the British Ceramics Bieannual 2017, and you can see her gorgeous pottery on her Instagram! As our resident foodie, Holly is the best person to ask about local eateries.
Katie is a fantastic illustrator, who has nearly finished her MA in Children’s Book Illustration. She loves painting woodland animals with adorable jumpers or hats on, and has a healthy obsession with dogs - if you need a paw print done, she’s your gal! Make sure to have a peek at her Instagram for some truly adorable creatures! Katie is our resident yoga queen, and is just training to run a 10k this summer.
If you visited our gallery in January, you will have seen our walls adorned with wonderful water colours by our lovely Alex. As a freelance designer, Alex has created patterns for Topman, Asos, and New Look. Every Wednesday she posts a new phone wallpaper to her Instagram so you can have the funkiest phone screensaver around. As a true Brightonian, she enjoys long walks on the beach!
Jules is undertaking an MA in Classics, with a focus on ancient crafting. She is fascinated by the pottery techniques we still use, which were perfected by potters thousands of years ago. When she’s not nosing around museums looking at ancient pots, you’ll find her on the beach with a book, come cloud or shine.
Lydia is also an avid reader, and excels at languages. After becoming fluent in French, she decided to tackle Italian, too - useful for all the Language School groups we have visit us over the summer months! She’s currently taking part in an internship, but in her free time enjoys writing, cycling and yoga.
Maya is our kiln queen - chances are your pottery was carefully glazed and loaded into the kilns by her! She’s super creative outside of work with her fabulous lino-printing work, which you can have a look at on her Instagram. When she’s not creating, she’s riding into the sunset on her gorgeous horse Finn.
Olive is the newest member of our team, and full of excitement about the potentials of pottery! She’s currently studying for her Anthropology BA at the University of Sussex, and is fascinated by the ways we engage with getting creative. She’s only been with us a few months but we’ve already had her on the potters’ wheel throwing some lovely little pots!
Sydney is currently studying a BA in 3D Design and Craft at Brighton. Sydney has been throwing pottery since she was 13 years old - nearly 10 years! It shows, as she’s a brilliant thrower and loves teaching customers how to tackle the wheel. Follow her pottery adventures over on her Instagram - recently she’s been making watering cans!
Gill has been the proud owner of The Painting Pottery Cafe for over 20 years. During this time, she has employed and encouraged many wonderful women, each with their own diverse interests and creative talents. She herself is a keen painter and as she might say - evolving feminist. You can glimpse her work from time to time in our shop window. And perhaps, more importantly, the shop instagram reflects her mission to encourage a greater engagement with the creative process for all ages and abilities.