Back in August we visited Kingsgate Workshops in West Hampstead to meet talented ceramicist Freya Bramble-Carter. We found out all about Freya's Clay Club pottery classes and got to see some of her own amazing works of art in the studio. Read on to find out more about Freya's inspirations and how she turned her hobby into a career
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your business?
I am a ceramicist and have been full time for the past 5/6 years. I started because I wanted to help my father who is a Potter and I decided that I did not want to work in the main stream industries what so ever and so I set up a little pottery classes for kids to get some pocket money!! And with hard work it flowed on from there!
Where did your passion for ceramics come from?
The essence of clay has always been in my horizon having a professional sculptor/ceramicist as a father, and whilst I was studying fine art at university, I found myself always in the pottery studio. So, I gathered 'why don't I just follow what I am naturally gravitating towards?' I fell in love with the touch of clay and how it made me feel!
Where do you draw inspiration from when creating new pieces?
I am very much inspired by textures in nature and the 4 elements of the earth: earth, water, wind, fire. The alchemy they produce when mixed with one's creativity is incredible to me!
How would you describe your work and aesthetic?
Often my work is happiest when a little rough, but well made (from the guidance of my father on how to make 'well'). I intuitively follow my feeling and let the creativity flow from my fingertips. I also plan large scale works for gardens or large spaces in the home where people can connect or feel inspired by another's creative touch whilst resting and rejuvenating at home. My work is usually thrown, altered and sculpted upon.
Can you tell us about the classes you run in your studio?
I teach people from the ground up on how to use their hands: I run throwing sessions, 4-week courses for beginners to give people a good run with their first batch of mugs and bowls that they can eat and drink out of. Which is very satisfying for people to come to terms with realising what they can achieve in such a short amount of time.
What advice would you give to someone starting their own creative business?
Go for it, just go and keep going until it all materialises for you and you always will have to keep going because that's what life is about it does not stop - especially when you run your own business. It is a FULL-TIME commitment...ask yourself how much you want it, your actions will give you your answer. Though I do think some businesses are a lot easier than others. Clay is a very rewarding but demanding material - you physically have to be there every step of the way and each part of the process requires big, heavy, expensive machinery before you've even made your bowl!
What does a typical working day look like for you?
• Wake up with a tea and meditation
• Look at my diary (night before too lol)
• Go to studio and talk to dad - do daily studio chores, unload/load kiln, wrap up students work, process clay, talk to people
• 6pm start evening class, have lots of fun in the process and watch people become inspired and evolve through the process
• Leave to go home at 10:30pm
• If I have time, I go Hampstead ponds or do MMA training/yoga - must keep my chi in flow especially after doing lots of throwing, you get real stiffening on the shoulders
How do you make your clothes work for you and your busy lifestyle?
I put clothes on to protect my body mostly and occasionally I need to look nice for special events! I also follow how I feel when I'm scanning around my room asking what I am going to wear today?! The process is usually a quick yes or no to each garment - I keep it simple as everything else is not so and requires more of my energy in more important things which is why I love Wrap. The garments are beautifully simple with a magic touch that makes you feel effortless. And they feel so soothing and calmingly comfortable on the skin, being made out of high-quality fabrics.
What are your go-to wardrobe staples?
Easy wear trousers and one of my mother's tops usually, I love her old clothes she no longer wears, they are flowery and often oriental looking. They are well made and comfortable.
If I wasn't a ceramicist I would be... a magician
My ideal breakfast... a huge hug and cup of tea
Words to live by... the world is your oyster
The best thing about my job... I get to play with clay and not take life so seriously as well as learning all those very serious and life-long lessons along the way
My day isn't complete until... I've done my meditation and listened to music and stuck my hand in clay!
A destination I'd love to visit... another planet
My favourite London hangout... wherever the good vibe is!
|Cotton Striped Hoody >
|Moleskin Trousers >
|Ribbed Merino Hoody >
|Hemp Cotton T-shirt >