At Berea College, Susie was introduced to the potter’s wheel as an apprentice in the school’s ceramic apprenticeship program. She spent two years mixing clay and perfecting her ceramic production skills and while she loved what she was doing, the demands were heavy on top of a busy class load, so she decided to drop the apprenticeship in order to complete her Art degree.
After graduation, she began a 25 year career in the printing industry doing image manipulation, color correcting and page assembly, all the while feeling a regret about leaving ceramics. She longed to get her hands back into the clay. Three decades later, in 2010 she was given a used potter’s wheel as a gift, and the dream of returning to the craft she had missed for so long, became a closer reality. Her throwing skills quickly returned and the artisan passion she had in college was reignited. The following year, 2011, when she was laid off from her print job, she decided to embark on a new path and become an entrepreneurial potter….start a business.
Not long after making this decision, Susie was introduced to the Artisans Center of Virginia during a Shenandoah County Artisan Trail development meeting in her county. She went home excited, feeling she had found her “peeps” and she joined and became committed to helping to bring her community’s artisan trail to life. Influenced by her graphic skills and the natural world around her, she invented a new and playful style with her clay forms. She applied to the ACV Jury that following September and was accepted.