An Interview with Stine by SR-mag

Thank you to the lovely Jake Zywiol of SR-mag for the wonderful and refreshingly unique interview with Stine. Jake spent an afternoon at our studio in May getting to know our space and our team, and chatting to Stine about her work and the ethos behind SkandiHus:

‘With the general calming atmosphere in the studio, you can see that Stine’s authenticity puts people at ease around her, much like comforting a close friend at your doorstep and inviting them to your personal space. Authenticity is about presence, portraying the situation of living in the moment with conviction and confidence but most importantly, staying true to yourself’.

Read the full article here.

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Flow

It’s been quite a long journey for me to get to where I am today. Six years ago, I was working in the City of London as a Business Crime lawyer. I’ve been thinking a lot recently about how important “connection” is to me. Reflecting on what life was like back in my lawyer days, I think that I was both feeling quite empty inside and living a rather detached life, always striving for more or something better - or more to the point, always feeling like I had to be something more or do better. I was on this endless exhausting search upwards (which I believe is a cultural tendency in our late capitalist industrial growth world). Working with clay in my evening pottery classes allowed me to stop striving and stay in the moment with what I was doing. I now understand that what was happening to me was that I stopped looking for something outside of me to fill the emptiness that I was feeling inside. I slowly stopped striving and somehow started to believe that I was enough. Working with clay facilitated a reconnection for me, with myself, nature, and the world around me - a sort of reconnection with my hands, heart and mind if you like. The psychologist Mihaly Csikzentmihalyi argues that crafts, like pottery, allow us to enter a “flow” state, a perfect immersive state of balance between skill and challenge. If you’re feeling disconnected, try picking up a paintbrush, learning a new skill, or joining one of our pottery classes. Reach out, connect, and do something just for you. There’s a lot of kindness in the world, you just have to look for it and open your heart to it. Lots of love and light, Stine x

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The Art of Running a Business

Running your own creative business is a constant battle between maintaining your creative identity, and ensuring that the business is able to survive past the next three months. Money still seems to be such a taboo for artists, but it’s really important to have open and frank discussions about it. I mean, if you don’t make a living from your art, you won’t be able to continue making it (unless you’re fortunate enough to not have to worry about making a living). As much as I don’t want my making to be dictated by what people want to buy, I also have to be realistic and bear it in mind. 

For me, the ability to run classes and workshops at SkandiHus has drastically reduced this pressure and shifted the financial burden away from my own work. I have never wanted to mass produce my ceramics, it isn’t something that I enjoy and I have found that once you get stuck in that cycle of making, it becomes impossible to find the time to develop new work or experiment with new techniques, which is what I love to do most. The income from our classes plays a large role in the financial model of the studio, which is something that I have always been upfront about because I think it is important for other makers to be able to understand how different studios are making it work for them. 

In the current economic climate, with the saturation of makers in the creative industries at such a high, it is becoming increasingly difficult to make a real living from selling your work. I am incredibly fortunate to have an alternative stream of income for the business that supports my making, and gives me the freedom to create on my own terms. Running classes has also been an enlightening experience for me, as I truly love teaching. There is a great relief sometimes after a day of solitary creativity in my studio, to open my doors to a group of new people with fresh minds, and a different perspective - it stops me from getting stuck inside my own head. It is also a great privilege to be able to pass on my skills to other people, and hopefully pass on a sense of peace and mindfulness also. Making my own work will always be my first passion, but running the business has opened up new challenges, opportunities, and a great sense of joy in itself. 

Condé Nast Traveller's Brilliant Birthday Ideas in London

We were so thrilled to be included in Condé Nast Traveller’s recent article on 20 Brilliant Birthday Ideas in London. We love welcoming groups of friends to our studio for a couple of hours of fun and creativity, and it’s lovely to see that our guests enjoy it as much as we do! Thank you Sonya Barber for including us in your article, and we’ve been inspired to try a few of your other suggestions ourselves…

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Anna Jones - Guardian Cook

I get so excited every time I see Anna Jones use my work to display her delicious dishes. Featured here is my Speckled Blush bowl with Anna Jones’ instant frozen berry ice-cream. Photograph: Matt Russell/The Guardian. Food styling: Rosie Ramsden. Prop styling: Louie Waller.

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