My father’s career as a civil engineer with the government gave my family the opportunity to live all over the world including the Philippines, Morocco, Greece and attending the boarding school TASIS in England. Through these experiences, I was able to build an appreciation for art that has continued throughout my life. Being exposed to the rich architecture, colors, textures, and histories of Greece and Morocco enabled me to foster a love for classical art and architecture. The integration of art with everyday life that I experienced, such as seeing artists publicly working with their hands to create beautiful objects in the Medinas of Morocco, set me on the artistic path.
I attended Virginia Tech, pursuing an education in Architecture and Urban Studies. Architecture provided a way to study the aesthetic beauty of an object in space while taking into consideration the function of the form and how it will be used. Also at Virginia Tech, I became involved in the ceramics program taught by Ellen Braaten who taught me how to apply architectural concepts to designing and constructing ceramics. It was through this experience that I adapted making ceramic pieces that not only look beautiful, but are durable and function well. The foundation of skills for my later career in ceramics was built here at Virginia Tech.
After graduating from college in 1997, I studied abroad for a month in Gallifa, Spain at the Joseph Llorens Artigas Foundation. Here, I got an introduction into being a career potter under the guidance of Ellen Braaten. The focus was on hand-building techniques and I had the opportunity to glaze my work in a Japanese Wood Fired Kiln. Although my love for ceramics was solidified during this time period, I still felt the need to pursue architecture in a professional setting in order to complete my architectural studies.
In 1998 I moved to Brooklyn, New York where over a course of seven years I worked for two different architecture companies all the while dedicating myself to the ceramic studio in the evenings and weekends. In 2000, along with seven other ceramic artists, we founded a cooperative pottery studio, the Sunset Park Ceramics Co-Op. By 2004, I had commissions from private clients, specializing in custom made dinnerware and decorative vases, and launched my website scarlettwares.com. By the end of the 6th year both my husband and I reached the critical point in our architecture careers where we had to decide whether we wanted to pursue our licensing exam in architecture or transition into a career in art. At this time we also decided to begin a family of our own. It was an all around good transition point and in 2005 we moved to Fredericksburg, VA to begin our adventure as parents as well as artists. Our sons, Diego was born in 2005 and Cairo was born in 2008. Both our boys have brought so much wonder, magic and love into our lives.
In 2005 I started making and selling ceramics as a full time career through our studio space that was located in Downtown Fredericksburg, Va at LibertyTown Arts Workshop. In 2010 we opened our brick and mortar store, PONSHOP Studio and Gallery, also in Downtown Fredericksburg, VA. I sell my work mainly through our store but also accept commissions from private clients, retail stores and restaurants.
Inspiration for my work is drawn from nature to create beautiful functional pieces. I use a variety of techniques such as coil, slab, the potters wheel and exploring different decorating techniques using clay stencils. I finish all my work with glazes I make in our studio.