Amy Hunt Pottery

Amy Hunt Callahan of amyhuntpottery creates wheel-thrown pottery, hand painted with her signature black swirl designs.

Tell me about how you originally got into your craft, Amy.
I was going to school to be a French teacher, when my teacher from high school called and said, "Don't do it!" She had some really compelling reasons that made me stop for a bit. I had some thinking to do, so I took a semester off and decided to try something new. I had always wanted to try pottery and there was a place right down the road that taught classes. I took an eight week course with Kim Chapman, then was taken on as an apprentice for two years. I was allowed to work in the studio if I worked in the gallery. He was great. He even let me do some of his production work in the second year, making thousands of little bowls. I think that's what really made me proficient in my craft, making the same thing over and over all day every day for months.

What is your favorite thing to do in the whole wide world?
Goodness. Just one? I think that would involve snuggling Wren, my little one. She's great at it.

What is your biggest challenge when it comes to running your business?
Time. Time management, having time to create, taking the time to enjoy the process. Since I paint everything by hand with a tiny brush, it takes an incredible amount of time to finish anything, but I can't find anything quicker that's as satisfying. Having a toddler in the house creates it's own challenges, but she's getting to an age where I can take her into the studio and let her poke and pile clay while I do some finishing work. I can't have her in there as I throw, though, I can just imagine me chasing her about with muddy hands and her a handful of finished mugs dangling above the concrete floor.

What item in your shop would you most like to receive as a gift if someone were shopping for you?
Hmm... I think that I would like to get a face flowerpot more than anything. I have two in my kitchen right now that I've secretly named Edmund and Edwina. After that, probably a mug. I really like useful things.

When you were a kid, what did you think you were going to be when you grew up?
Well, I started out wanting to be an archaeologist. I think mostly because they didn't have to dress up and could dig around in the dirt all day. I guess I didn't venture far off of that path, if you think of it that way. Later, I really went into training to be an opera singer, which lasted until my first year of college. French teacher was an offshoot of that. I think a life in the theater would have had me picking at a windowpane somewhere.

What other shops or artists out there do you love?
Wow, I have so many that really blow my mind. Duy Huynh is a local painter that has always amazed me. Karen Preston is great. Alicia Bock, M Kendall, and Sharon Augustyniak are fabulous photographic artists. As for potters, that list could be extensive. Amy Sanders, Adrienne Dellinger, Keith Phillips, Zygote at fetishghost, Laura Zindel, Sally Jaffee, Suzanne Crane... and I'll stop right there. Because I could go on!

What does your future hold?
I don't have any idea what the future holds. I hope that it involves a lot more mud, creating, and teaching. Right now, I'm trying to perfect the coil and throw method, so I'm really focusing on big. Gigantic pots with intricate paintings. I would love to have a big show full of large pots. My future may involve a larger kiln.

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