Today we’d like to introduce you to Elizabeth Eisenstein.
Hi Elizabeth, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
Ever since I was a child, I have been interested in art, as well as in running a business. However, it wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I was able to finally put those two passions together. In 2012, I graduated from New York University, where I majored in Studio Art with emphases in photography and sculpture. While there, I also explored a variety of more traditional craft mediums, including weaving, light metalsmithing, woodturning, and ceramics, always with the thought in my mind that I wanted to sell what I created. However, it was only after I moved back to my home state of California and enrolled in a course at Pasadena City College did I seriously begin to devote my time to ceramics. After a few years of classes, I moved to the high desert and got a job as a production potter, where I was able to hone my craft. In 2015, I launched ZZIEE Ceramics and have enjoyed watching it (and myself!) grow.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Starting and running a creative business is by definition a bumpy road! Initial struggles were primarily regarding technique and skills in creating my product–skills which I am still working on to this day. The business side of things also included difficulties, especially in regards to time management and being my own boss. While I relish being able to plan my week as I see fit, it is also challenging to manage everything that must be done without burning out. It’s something I’m still learning how to do, but which I have definitely gotten better at.
Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
I am primarily a potter but occasionally experiment with sculpture. My work is inspired by the colors, textures, and shapes of the Mojave Desert, where I live. Aesthetically, I’ve always been drawn to minimalism and clean design–but I lack restraint and am obsessed with experimenting with different glazes and clay bodies! I try to find harmony between my minimalist aspirations and maximalist tendencies by creating items that have clean lines and elegant forms but showcase a wide array of glazes with exuberant colors and rich textures. Additionally, I have always loved learning and honing a skill. With ceramics, there’s no end to what you can learn–there are innumerable techniques, materials, methods, and styles to study and practice. Knowing that there’s always more for me to learn keeps me constantly engaged and inspired.
What are your plans for the future?
I’m currently planning on expanding my studio space, ideally to a location outside of my own home! I currently run my entire business out of my garage, which has worked very well given the circumstances, but I am ready to take the next step. I’m looking forward to hiring an employee or two to help me with production, as well as open my studio space to the public once it is safe to do so.
- Mug – $34
- Mini Planters – $18
- Ripple Vases – $85+
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.zzieeceramics.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/zzieeceramics/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/zzieeceramics