Maker Profile – making it 2015-17: Sasha McVey
Hi Sasha! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? How did you get into making?
Hello, my name is Sasha McVey, and as far as I can remember I have always had an interest and passion for making. Early memories of Lego, sand sculptures, plasticine and Play-Doh may have led to my choosing of various art related subjects at school. Passionate about many art forms from painting, printmaking, mixed media, ceramics and set design, I went on to study ceramics completing my BA Hons in Contemporary Applied Arts at the University of Ulster, Belfast in 2014. In completing my degree I decided to continue with my passion for ceramics to start my own business ‘Sasha McVey Ceramics’.
Can you tell us a bit about your making process and how the making it programmehas helped?
I create a range of contemporary ceramics from delicate sculptures, functional wares, decorative wares, gifts and commissioned ceramics. My making process can vary from throwing, slip casting, hand building, molding, decorating and polishing to name a few. Not only do I have numerous processes for each collection of work but many of these processes can be used to create one piece. With a passion for the discipline and working in a vast scope of processes I am continuously experimenting, developing and learning. This allows me to hand make the desired outcome to create aesthetic, high quality pieces of art for your home and as gifts. My wares are predominantly made from porcelain and black clay due to their natural and contrasting qualities. I also create bespoke commission pieces for specific clients which are tailored to their needs. Due to my participation in Craft Northern Ireland’s making it Programme, all my products are handmade in my current studio within the Northern Regional College, Ballymena. The Programme has helped kick start my business, offering business advice and support, as well as given me the time and support to help me develop a plan for my business and define my product ranges.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
In my spare time I love to go for walks in my local area and spend time with family. Living within the Glens of Antrim I am surrounded by such natural beauty and it is easy to see why it inspires my ceramics. Walks along the coast, forest, beaches and the trails throughout the glens, with my camera at the ready to capture the amazing landscape which I live in.
Where can people currently see or buy your work?
I sell my work through some beautiful local shops and galleries as well as at exhibitions throughout the year:
Raceview Mill Gallery, Broughshane
Gallery 1608, Bushmills
Synergy Studios, Newcastle
Blackthorn and Willow, Glenarm
Flowerfield Arts Centre, Portstewart
What are you looking forward to the most about the exhibition?
There are many reasons for why I am looking forward to the exhibition, but most of all to exhibit with my fellow making it participants once again and to see and reflect on our two-year journey together.
Where would you like to see your business in a year's time? Do you have any big plans for 2017?
In a year’s time I would love to export my work to shops and galleries further afield. I would also love to create more bespoke commission pieces as I thoroughly enjoy creating new innovative unique pieces. In 2017 I hope to sell my products online, as well as offering my services for ceramic classes and workshops.
Find out more about 'Maiden Voyage', the 'making it' group's upcoming exhibition, which launches on 23 March in the University of Ulster, Belfast, here.
'making it' is supported by Invest NI, as well as the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.