Before we start, tell us a little about yourself/how did you get into art/craft/design career and how it all started and where you are now.
I am a ceramic designer/maker based in the heart of Northamptonshire, UK, creating my handmade one-off ceramic pieces from my workshop at home. It is here that I enjoy spending time on new natural designs while listening to music and drinking tea!
My journey began when I found myself fascinated with the qualities of clay as a material while at college. I loved art and being creative at school, which is why I studied a broad range of art at A Level, including Fine Art, 3D Design, and Art & Design. My A Levels were like a foundation course, as I was able to get involved and experience every material to know which media I wanted to specialise in.
I had always enjoyed surface pattern and design, which led me to go on to University in Coventry where I studied a 3 year BA Hons degree in Surface Decoration, and specialised in ceramics. I graduated in 2008 and have since been continuing to develop and broaden my work from my workshop at home. I am so proud of how far I have come during the past few years, and am so pleased with all of the amazing things that have happened. I can’t wait to find out what lies ahead of me in the future!
How long have you been using sketchbooks?
Ever since my college days, they have broadened and evolved.
How often do you sketch?
Whenever an idea pops into my head, which could often be late at night while in bed! Some days I set a couple of hours aside just for sketchbook work which gives my hands a break from making and refreshes my mind and ideas.
How do you feel about the prospect of starting a new sketchbook?
I still find it a bit daunting starting a new sketchbook - the pages are so bright and white! I find that sticking in a few images or magazine clippings helps to start things off, then I just work around them.
When/where do you get your inspiration for your sketchbook pages?
I love the book 'Sources of Inspiration' by Carolyn Genders. Her sketchbook pages inspire me and I usually have a flick through the book if I'm feeling uninspired.
I don't really draw many forms unless I am designing a specific item. My sketchbook pages are usually used for surface pattern ideas.
How would you describe your creative process?
I don’t really have an exact way of doing things; in fact I would say the process of my sketchbooks is very random. Sometimes I will open a sketchbook at a page right in the middle and start there, rather than following on from the last page. Some days I spend time painting coloured backgrounds on different pages ready to be drawn on, and others I will spend sticking things in. The great thing about drawing in a sketchbook is that there is no right or wrong way about doing things.
Have your sketchbooks evolved over the years and if so, how?
I would say that my drawings have become a lot more loose and free.
What is your favourite medium to work with?
I use all kinds of different medium as I love layering and overlapping drawings in different materials to create abstract surface designs. My favourite medium would be oil pastels, I like the smooth feel when in contact with the page.
Do you have a favourite sketchbook?
I love my chunkiest sketchbooks, those that can hardly close because there is so much packed inside them. They look as if they are bursting with inspiration and ideas waiting to get out.
If you had to pick one favourite page which would it be and why?
This raised surface design is my favourite page - it was a mixed media design I created from an initial drawing of a close up tree trunk. I later developed this design into a large raised printing block which I now use for rolling into clay before constructing forms. So this initial rough design is the key to how I produce a lot of my work today!
I'd like to say a BIG thank you to Charlotte for taking part in our Sketchbook Peeks Series. If you would like to find out more about Charlotte and her work you can can check out her website here, her blog here, you can foolow her on her facebook page here, you can follow her on Twitter @CHCeramics or see her lovely Pinterest boards here.
There won't be any sketchbook peeks next week due to Easter Monday Bank Holiday but they will be back before you know it!!