Allow me to introduce myself...

Jessica Gray, ceramist - profile pic 1 I am a studio artist, currently working and showing in the wonderful Zanesville, Ohio. My unique pieces are created in the studio at Zanesville Pottery, where I also offer private lessons in both hand-building and wheel throwing.

My sincere interest in art started my senior year in high school. That year I took Clay I and II. I was instantly entranced with the processes involved with clay. Being a “practical teen” at the time, I felt ceramics was highly impractical. The following year I enrolled in an associate degree program in Digital Media Design at a local college. In 2004 I graduated from Central Ohio Technical College with an A.A.S. in Drafting and Design Technology focused in Digital Media Design.

That fall I transferred my credits into a bachelor program at Shawnee State University intending to follow that career path. I very quickly realized that I was not satisfied with my chosen career path. I knew I wanted to stay in the art field and after a semester or two of exploration, I found my new career path as well as practical applications for it. I returned to a ceramic studio in my quest to iron out my new career plan. The studio brought back life to a part of me that I had for so long left to the side. As I completed the requirements for this degree I took the required Art History classes and then some extras to fill my electives. Art History became another passion of mine at this time. In 2007 I graduated from Shawnee State University with a B.F.A. focused in Ceramics and a minor in Art History

Blue Coil Vase, Dimple TechniqueIn 2008 I enrolled in a graduate level program at Kent State University. It was at this time that my creative technique really flourished. The idea behind the" Dimpling Technique" came to me in the high school ceramics class as we were doing our coil pots. Rather than using my fingers to smooth the inside of the pots I used a tool to smooth the layers together. The tool left a scratching pattern on the inside of the pot. This pattern made me think "What if this was on the outside of the pot as decoration?" Unfortunately I never had the opportunity to explore my idea until 2005 when I was enrolled in a ceramics class at Shawnee. The product of my imagination was spectacular. Looking back now some of my first attempts at the process I developed were sad to say the least. With all things practice and thorough exploration lead to a much greater end product becoming achievable. In 2007 I won an award for having one of the top pieces with "Beehive Tea Tree" Teapot in the Ohio Art Education Association Spring University/College Student Show. In 2010 I graduated from Kent State University with an M.F.A. focused in Ceramics. I continued use of the technique I created through grad school and still use it to this day.

I am always reading.  More often than not my choices gravitate toward history, art, monarchies and religion. While these may seem quite unrelated I assure you they have more in common than may appear at first glance. My readings always draw me back to art, allowing myself a firmer grasp on the relationship these seemingly separate subjects hold. Piecing together history with subjects in art for a broader understanding truly fascinates me.

I really enjoy traveling. Living in the UK, My husband and I are centrally located for traveling within Europe. We have done quite a bit of traveling both within and outside of the UK. We have a summer Sunday ritual of visiting one of the UK's many historical sites or national parks. Outside the U.S. and U.K. I have visited the magical cities of Rome, Paris, Brussels, and several other enriching places. I desperately long to visit Egypt to walk amidst the Pyramids in the Valley of the Kings, and stand dwarfed next to the Great Sphinx.