My name is Jackie Frioud and I am a full-time studio potter, working out of my home studio in Horseshoe Bay. I have a studio in an upstairs room (lots of running up and down with bags of clay!), a showroom in one of the kid’s old bedrooms and outside, a covered area where my salt kiln lives.
When and why did you decide to start your business?
I fell in love with salt-firing while studying ceramics at Vancouver’s Capilano College in 2001. They had one of the few salt-kilns available, so I was lucky to have access to it. One of the drawbacks of salt-firing is that the kilns have a limited lifespan. When the college’s kiln was no longer functional, I decided that the time had come to build my own and start working full-time in my home.
What inspires you to create the lovely shapes and textures in your ceramics?
What inspires me? I think that function really inspires me. How the pot is going to be used. But also, I love the clean and simple lines of Scandinavian design, and the practical, sturdy design of old crocks, milk bottles, and galvanized metal tubs and buckets. I look at lots of pots from past and present, too.
Do you hand draw your pieces first? How do you document your ideas?
I always have a notebook on the go and I sketch ideas very quickly – nothing too careful. I also cut out magazine photos and make notes. Everything goes in there and I often go back to old notebooks when I need inspiration. I also draw on my canvas table a lot – when I’m trying to figure out how something is going to work. That, however, gets washed off every night.
What new products do you have in mind for 2014?
I have a show in June of this year at the Gallery of BC Ceramics, so I’ve spent since the new year focussing on that. I’ve been working on a new colour palette and I’m really pleased with the new white – greys I’m getting. As well, I’ve been testing extensively for a good dark blue and I think I’m getting close to what I have in my head. “Settle” is the name of the show, and to me that implies domesticity, a sense of calm and contemplation, and resolution.
How would you like your collection to grow? And where else would you like to see it sold?
I constantly make new designs. I continue to make old ones because I like them, or I want to refine them, and because my customers like them, too. The Gallery of BC Ceramics is my main retail venue, and I like to do craft markets in the summer and Christmas season.
What is the best thing about what you do?
I feel really fortunate that I can work for myself, creating things that inspire and challenge me, living in an artistic reverie most of the time, and doing what I love. Clay is a really physical medium – hard work sometimes, but also requiring delicate manual dexterity and mental focus. It’s a fulfilling combination.