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Taking Advantage of the Quiet

a student stands in a ceramics studio sculpting a mug
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The ceramics studio at Utah State University is rarely empty.

There is always a bowl to throw, a pot to trim, or someone glazing a piece for the kiln. But just before winter break, senior Amanda Brown ‘22 snuck in a quiet moment to glaze a Mad-Hatter mug — one of three she created during the fall semester along with a triple-spouted teapot.

“I don’t drink tea and haven’t enjoyed making teapots in the past mostly because they have no use for me,” Brown admits. “But I realized that I could just think of it as a teapot sculpture. It would still be functional, but have a very decorative and sculptural feel to it. This helped me be able to create something that I had not enjoyed creating previously, but now I had a way to make it exciting and interesting.”

Brown, an art major, says she found community and support from her professors who encouraged creative freedom — an ideal scenario for a person who loves to make unique pieces. And the ceramics studio is full of possibilities. Students have access to a wide variety of tools, glazes of all colors, and a space to create whatever they come up with.

Photo and text by Abigail Swaner

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