The soft unique color of a piece of raw wood gives me shivers. I can’t get enough of its natural swirling state, which is why I’ve avoided using any color or even heavy finishes on my pieces so far. I couldn't bare to see those features get covered-up.
That said, I recently decided I need some color in my perpetually neutrally-palleted life and I seem to have found a solution – Heath Ceramics tiles. They are at once vibrant and soft, fragile and immutable.
I've always been attracted to handmade ceramics and the process of working with clay. I remember a frizzy-haired friend of my mom who ran a pottery workshop in Anchorage that brought my attention to the art early on. The idea of the kiln is what fascinated me most – putting your work into the fire as an offering and receiving it back with new life.
When I found Heath Ceramics in San Francisco I would hang out there and write stories inspired by the cozy, distractionless minimalism of the shop. Perfectly situated piles of plates and mugs organized by color; row after row of clean shapes and creative simplicity, with just enough imperfection that evokes a sense of handmade - you can get lost in the purity of it all. I knew I was in love with that environment and that I would find a way to bring it with me when I moved to Boulder.
Six months later getting my hands on some sample tiles was the first step in bringing Heath to Boulder with me. And incorporating them into my wood pieces has been my experimental foray into the mood-altering world of color, executed in a way that allows me to avoid harsh paint and bring in new material to compliment the swirling grain of my first love - wood.
J. D. Sampson