I guess the person in my family with the most artistic skills would be my mom. She’s really good at drawing. For our birthday parties growing up, she would always do “pin the tail” on something. One year she did Simba’s face, and it looked exactly like him; then there was the genie from Aladdin and other Disney characters. She’s always been into art, but none of my family has pursued it as anything. I have always been creating though, but I didn’t get into clay specifically until high school. My freshman year I was required to take an art fundamentals class, and we had a clay project, which I didn’t enjoy. The following year, I signed up for an actual ceramics class, and that’s when I really got into it. The rest of high school I kept taking more clay classes until there were none left to take, then I started taking independent studies. I did an AP art concentration in ceramics my senior year.
My high school was Harry D. Jacobs in Algonquin, IL, where there were over 2,000 students. For the first 10 years of my life, I went to a Catholic school that had like 300 students, with 26 people in my graduating class, so it was a little shocking going to this giant public high school. It had an amazing art program though, and the teachers there were so awesome. Honestly, they were some of the best teachers I’ve ever had, even better than some of my college professors. Much of what they taught me has stuck, so it gave me a good foundation for a lot of things.