Devon has been my home for over twenty years. I can’t imagine ever wanting to live elsewhere. My workshop is hidden deep in the countryside and the surrounding natural environment fills me with inspiration and wonder.
I work in red earthenware clay, the pots simply decorated, with appliqué decoration or sgrafitto, using a basic palette of traditional slips, made from natural raw materials. The clay is dug from rich seams, found in the field beside my workshop – the same seams that have been exploited for thousands of years by the craftsmen before me.
My pots are thrown on the wheel and then fired in a kiln fuelled with wood.
The forms , predominantly large jugs, draw influence from the work of the medieval potters of England and the subsequent tradition of slip decorated country pottery, that was prevalent in this country until the early twentieth century. The skills presented by the master craftspeople of the past set an extraordinary high standard to which the contemporary maker must aspire. To seek to find one’s own distinctive voice amongst many who are using the same language, is a challenge that I take upon myself each and every day.
I’ve been making pots for most of my life. It’s a strange thing, to be excited by something as simple as a brown clay jug and I can’t explain it, but it seems that it happens to some people; it just gets under your skin.
At the festival Doug will demonstrate throwing and handling a large jug – he will make a harvest jug made in two sections, using a gas burner throughout the process. He will also demonstrate a number of different approaches to decoration, including sprigging, slip trailing and sgrafitto
For more information about Doug’s work, please visit his: website