Arcadia is the designer, maker and brains behind Arcadia Scott Ceramics. She is a self-taught potter working from her home studio in Brunswick, Victoria. Every piece is completely unique and shows her preference for clean forms, curved edges and textures. Special travel cups and planters, hand made in Melbourne.
We sat down with Arcadia to hear about the starting of her brand, and how she has created a thriving business by doing what she loves.
You’re a self-taught ceramicist. How did your love for ceramics begin and how long have you been honing your craft?
I had been admiring and collecting ceramics for a long time before I decided to book myself in to a 6 week beginners’ class late 2015. I was hooked the first night!
From there I started practising in a communal studio any spare chance I could until I was in a position to get myself set up at home. September 2017 marked my first month of being self employed and I haven’t looked back since.
You were working full time in sales for a long time. When did you decide it was time to venture out on your own?
The penultimate moment came when I finally acknowledged that whilst I loved my job, I loved making ceramics more so why not take a chance and go for it.
It was a really daunting decision at first because I was on my own, working for this great company and earning a great salary so there was a lot at stake if things didn’t work out.
What’s been the biggest highlight for you as a ceramicist?
That people actually collect or buy my work! It’s such a pinch myself moment that humbles me to this day.
Were there any barriers for you when you started your ceramics business?
I wouldn’t call them barriers however there have certainly been challenges. Self doubt plagues me at times but I think that a lot of people can relate to this regardless of their situation.
I also have a tendency to rush decisions rather than taking the time to research or think through the matter at hand so this has resulted in some pretty steep ‘in hindsight’ moments.
What is your creative process when it comes to designing a new product?
I am really driven by form and function so a lot of what I create needs to have a practical use but not at the expense of a tactile and visual experience. Often I will sketch an idea out at the beginning but ultimately I rely on experimenting with designs at the time of making.
If things aren’t too hectic in the studio with orders I will dedicate a day just creating new shapes that I have in mind for a series and go from there.
What are your essential tools to help you with your craft?
There are a number of tools that are essential to ceramics however the most important thing is actually yourself. Your hands, arms, neck and back bear the brunt of the hard labour so if you suffer an injury it has an immediate impact on your making abilities.
How do you add a personal touch to your brand?
I’d like to think my personality is evident in the pieces I create. I enjoy making considered pieces and experimenting with splashes of colour.
There is also very logical applications (efficiency nerd alert!) that I use behind the scenes that you may see if you looked at the body of work as a whole such as making pieces with the same heights which makes filling a kiln more efficient or the planter bases being interchangeable so that I am only making four plate sizes for the seven planters styles in the collection.
Do you have a favourite item in your collection?
It’s always evolving but I do a have a soft spot for any planters I create as this was the initial product that I made and were first stocked in stores.
What do you listen to while you work?
The music is usually cranked for glazing days but when I’m throwing it can vary between podcasts, audio books or the television (the benefits of having the pottery wheel in your lounge room!).