In my last year of art school, I was accepted into two local exhibitions, applied to be in a book featuring ceramic artists and got in, put together a very well-received thesis exhibition, and was accepted into graduate school to study ceramics. I felt like I was on top of the world! I have never had a year like that since—art-wise speaking. On reflection, the reason is simple: not only had I put the time into making in the studio, but I also applied to everything! I was fearless, and more importantly, oblivious to the sting of rejection. Of course, dealing with rejection is what artists must learn to do, and each of us defines that mission in their own way. 

Ultimately, rejection letters can be a stepping stone to toughening our spirits and reminding us that being declined for an opportunity is certainly not a measure of who we are and who we can become. Applying is only the first step, the second one is accepting and learning from the outcome.

To kick off your 2023 submissions, apply now to Pottery Making Illustrated’s new exhibition, “Pattern Play.” Selected submissions will be featured in the September/October 2023 print and online issues. The call for entry is live online, and the deadline to apply is June 20, 2023! 

You might also consider submitting an article to Pottery Making Illustrated after you read the newest Side Hustle article, “How to Write How-Tos." Writing an article that can be published online or in print is a great way expand your social-media following and grow your email marketing list, not to mention boosting your cred in the ceramics community. 

The artists in this issue, who all focus on handbuilding as their primary forming method, did just that, and their efforts lay on the pages that follow. Check out Jess Sarson’s handbuilt board games, Aaron Becker’s cut and assembled vases, Margaret Kinkeade’s tall pitcher, Samantha Oliver’s pillow-topped box, Michaela Bromberek’s stacked jars, Sunshine Cobb’s match striker, and Corinne Lent’s wall shrines. 

After reading this issue, trying your hand at a few new projects, and submitting several applications, who knows, this may be your best year yet!

-Holly Goring, Editor
Topics: Ceramic Artists