Friday, May 20, 2011

Spotlight On: Meg of Red and Main

I love RedandMain. I found Meg's shop the exact way I've found all my interviewees lately-- the April's Army team on Etsy.  However, when I saw her little monsters, I automatically fell in love.  They remind me of my own work.  They are strange, whimsical, unique.  I could actually picture her little creatures tromping through my landscapes .  Even her owls are a bit odd, in a very cute and colorful way. Like they should be perched in trees on Mars, rather than Earth.   She also makes beautiful organic-looking dishes that come in softly spotted colors, if incredibly adorable beasts aren't your thing (but they really should be).

Ceramic Moss Bowl

Tell us three things about yourself.
1.) I once met Henry Winkler (aka: The Fonz) and he was incredibly kind
2.) I consume an unhealthy quantity of both coffee and marshmallows daily
3.) I recently left a very lucrative consulting job to pursue ceramics full time (sub-context: I may or may not be completely insane)

What’s your medium and how did you get into it?
I work in white earthenware clay and various glazes.  My first experience with ceramics was in high school- I took an advanced ceramics class with a totally awesome teacher.  She pushed us to do projects well beyond the scope of what we thought we could do.  Even though I've taken lots of ceramics courses since then, I still look back on her class for techniques and inspiration.

What’s your favorite thing you’ve made?
I absolutely adore my mom and my favorite piece is one that I made for her birthday.  My mom and I are both year of the Rat in the Chinese Zodiac.  We took a trip to China 2 years ago and had the best time, so for her birthday this year, I made her two small ceramic rats holding paws.  Her birthday is May 9th and I am so excited to give these to her.

From where do you take inspiration?
I really love animals, so most of my inspiration comes from trips to the zoo or videos of cute animals online.  I also really enjoy creating new creatures and monsters, which I put in scenarios in my head (i.e.: two yetis having a picnic or a monster eating an ice cream cone).

Name one piece of art you wish you’d created and why?
Anything by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec.  His work is phenomenal.

What are you doing when you’re not crafting?
I'm probably doing accounting, site development, blog posting, or craft show preparation for Red & Main.  If I'm not doing that, I am hopefully at the gym.  But realistically I'm probably drinking coffee or wine... or coffee and wine... and catching up on TV I've missed through Hulu.

Cleft Chin Dashing Yeti

If you had to give up your medium and pursue another, what would it be and why?
I think I'd go into hand-carved stamp making.  I think there's something really awesome about carving away at something to make a beautiful object. It's like you're taking away all the parts that don't belong and substituting your creativity- that's the awesome part.

Tell us about a time you were making something that came out better than expected and how it happened.
I was glazing a new creature- my Dapper Swamp Thing- and I decided to get a little creative.  Generally, you're not supposed to mix glazes due to chemical reactions that may occur when firing that can turn your piece all kinds of crazy colors.  I threw caution to the wind and put 4 different glazes on the Swamp Thing- and he turned out looking pretty great.  I was expecting an oozing mass of greenish brown, but he came out green with black speckles.  I'll definitely be using that technique in the future and I don't think I'll shy away from mixing glazes in the future.

Who is one person living or dead, famous or not, who you wish owned one of your creations and why?
I wish Oscar Wilde owned one of my Yetis.  Can you imagine flamboyantly-dressed, verbose Oscar Wilde tooling around an exceptionally well decorated flat with a Yeti in his hands?  I can...and it's amazing.

How would you explain how to do what you do to an eight year old?
I play with clay all day and make fun things that hopefully make other people happy.  Man, my job sounds pretty sweet!

What’s your favorite part of the process?
The creation of a finished ceramic piece takes so much time- molding and sculpting the piece; letting it dry; first-firing the piece in the kiln; glazing the piece; glaze firing the piece; and then putting on the finishing touches.  The best part, for sure, is opening the lid of the kiln after the final glaze firing; it's like Christmas morning.  Glazes can be tempermental and you don't always know what the result is going to look like.  Sometimes you're thrilled, sometimes you're horrified...but it's always a surprise.

One random thing you think people should know.
Not to drop a product reference, but I think it's important- Peter Thomas Roth's Complexion Correction Toning Pads will change your life.  I tell 90% of people I know about these- that is how awesome I think they are. 

Ceramic Cat with a Bird Friend

Your shop address/facebook/Twitter/blog/website. Etc.

If you could have any superpower what would it be and why?
Invisibility.  Hands down.  Having the ability to go anywhere you wanted, listen to any conversation, anytime?  Sold.  Where can I sign up?


  1. Great interview! This was a fun read. Off to favourite....

  2. Love the Yeti!!, and the interview. Great job!