Nitju Clayworks represents the work of one primary potter, me, and occasionally other high quality work from central PA artists and craftspersons including Amy Romaniec, highorsefarm.com, helping me unload a kiln in photo at right.
All of my pottery is high fired stoneware, winter-hardy. I use the same clays and firing for casserole containers suitable for baking, micro-waving and freezing.
I do enjoy making traditional bonsai pot designs, albeit with my own "twists", glazes, and clay bodies. But, as my son tells me, I tend to be moving toward a more organic approach!
Time will add patina to some glazes. And while rugged, no stoneware is drop-proof! Behind every piece I sell is one guarantee: if it doesn't meet your expectations, you deserve a full refund or, at your discretion, exchange for a piece of at least equal value.
I came to appreciate the Eastern aesthetic while working in landscape maintenance and construction in California (not-so-sunny Northern California!). After 20 years of on-and-off bonsai study and saying "ouch" every time I shelled out for a bonsai pot, I decided to learn "mudslinging". Having already spent many years in school at Humboldt State and Penn State and having developed a "day job" career, I did not take the Master of Fine Arts route to ceramics but instead spent several years working with and picking the brains of several fine production potters and ceramic artists. Fifteen years later it is truly my hope that my customers don't say "ouch"!
I do sell "long-distance" and will gladly explore custom pots but I really enjoy the face-to-face experience with my customers at bonsai events. Plus I just really enjoy bonsai so the demos and exhibits make such events a "busman's holiday" for me. I am interested in expanding my venue to other bonsai events large or small, "Have Pots, Will Travel".
By the way, "Nitju" is a conjunction of two important geo-references near my central PA home -- Nittany Mountain and the village of Julian. I live in sight of the first; one of my first pottery mentors, Jason Bloom, lives in the second...on Mudlick Lane!