Creative with Clay – bringing clay to life!

We’ve covered some really interesting and talented artists on The Lifestyle Portal right from sand sculpting, sketching, pottery and clay art.

But when we spotted some of the gorgeous handmade creations by Creative with Clay, we at The Lifestyle Portal decided to find a little more about the artist behind it all.

What we liked most about his creations is that apart from being absolutely stunning, they stand apart from hoards of clay and pottery work out in the market and that his creations boast of unique designs and colours that bring to life the rustic earthiness of India in a fashionable way.

Meet 39-year-old Charan Sachar the man who makes clay look so good that you wouldn’t want to own even the finest bone china! His creations are so wonderful that he manages to capture a hue of sunlight and the mischievous colours of Bollywood in perfect harmony; and every time we see one of his creations, it’s as if poetry being written from clay.

Based out of Seattle, WA, USA, Charan holds a Masters degree in Computer Science and is a self-taught potter/artist who has been dabbling with clay and creating beautiful items for the last 12 years.

How did it all begin?

“I have always wanted to work in clay but it was only in 2000 that I got a chance to take my first class in pottery in the United States. After a year or so, friends and others were showing a lot of interest in my work and I decided to take a little serious look at my hobby,” recalls Charan.

Though he admits that pottery as not initially intended to be his career as he had a full-time job as a software engineer, but he continued with a few shows and sold some of my work at galleries for a few years assess the market.

Since 2008, it got more serious and he was doing good at shows and more galleries were asking for his work. In was only in 2011 that Charan finally quit his full-time job and put all his efforts towards Creative with Clay.

It’s hard to believe that with a few elementary and basic pottery classes that he attended Charan creates poetry out of clay.

How did it all begin?

“I have always wanted to work in clay but it was only in 2000 that I got a chance to take my first class in pottery in the United States. After a year or so, friends and others were showing a lot of interest in my work and I decided to take a little serious look at my hobby,” recalls Charan.

Though he admits that pottery as not initially intended to be his career as he had a full-time job as a software engineer, but he continued with a few shows and sold some of my work at galleries for a few years assess the market.

Since 2008, it got more serious and he was doing good at shows and more galleries were asking for his work. In was only in 2011 that Charan finally quit his full-time job and put all his efforts towards Creative with Clay.

It’s hard to believe that with a few elementary and basic pottery classes that he attended Charan creates poetry out of clay.

Investments made

As it all started with just a thought of this being a hobby his initial investment was a humble yet powerful potter’s wheel for a few hundred dollars.

He continues, “I rented a studio space close by and did my pottery work there. When we purchased our home in 2004, I decided to convert one of my rooms into my studio space.”

That is where more investments in kiln, slab rollers and other equipment came in. Over the years there has been more equipment purchased and shelving is always being added in.

In the last couple of years Charan has taken over a garage space for inventory and packaging and he feels, “I still could use more space and I can foresee an outbuilding on my property for storage.”

Formal training

Having attended workshops from potters across the US got Charan more acquainted with clay and its properties. But when it came to developing his line of work, he worked based on his own techniques to create the look he wanted and he adds which we agree, “This takes years of testing and a lot of patience!”

The brand – Creative with Clay

Creative with Clay is his expression of being inspired by Indian fabrics and embroidery.

He further adds, “I work on incorporating the look of the intricate fabrics and the flow in my forms. The fluidity of the forms and detailed decoration connects my work directly to my culture and my life in India. People see this in my work and recognise it for its unique look.”

Challenges faced

With my techniques and almost all techniques with clay, the drying of it can be a challenge. The hand building of my forms and the slip decoration requires the clay to be at the perfect stage of dryness. Through experience, I now have a good handle on my process cycle.

What makes Creative with Clay so unique?

Being inspired by Indian fabrics and the colours and embroidery, I have worked on a technique of slip decoration that lets me create that raised effect of embroidery on clay. The textural feel and the individual hand decorated look of every piece makes my work stand out as one of a kind.

His creations

“My inspiration comes from fashion, fabric and watching a lot of Bollywood movies. I enjoy the colours, costumes and the movement created when actors dance. I try to create my forms to mimic that look,” he further adds, “I sell mostly functional work like cups, mugs, bowls, butter dishes, salt pepper shakers and vases that are in the $24 – $100 price range. And my wall hanging platters and sculptures range from $200-$1000.”

Most memorable work so far…

That would have to be some of my sculptural pieces, like ceramic Mojaris with a clutch bag and also a bust with detailed embroidery; and we’re sure there’ll be much more to come!

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Comments (2)
  1. Pooja Chopra

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