Leanne lives in beautiful Melbourne Australia, overlooking the beach, where she has lived all her life and loves it. She has a daughter at university, a husband who dotes on her and a cat whom she trips over constantly. Leanne describes herself as a ‘do it right now’ person who is busy creating. You can see all her creations at her shop, StudioLeanne. Her secret is that she has been 38 years old for some years now.
How long have you been creating? Why did you start?
My more meaningful creative life began during school years where I discovered a passion for pottery. In keeping with my secret age, I have been potting for some 20 years now, creating ceramic pieces in stoneware and porcelain. During this time I discovered the magic of glass and have incorporated this medium into much of my work.
Where do you get your materials?
Living on the beach allows me to find the most fascinating driftwood pieces which I often incorporate into my ceramic wall art. Recycled paper and card go into my decoupage.
Can you tell us a little of your process?
I mix many of my own glazes and still enjoy throwing a pot on the wheel. Each ceramic piece is allowed to dry then it is high temperature kiln fired. The next process is glazing. The pieces are then fired again, and sometimes a third firing depending on the effect I want to achieve.
How long does it take?
The complete process can take up to two weeks.
Do you have a dedicated work area/room?
With 2 kilns in my studio, one for ceramics and the other for glass, I am kept constantly warm in winter and perfectly poached all summer long.
Is this your full-time job? Hobby? Fun?
I’m passionate about my work, it is fun and a wonderful outlet for my creativity. Some years ago my daughter wanted a specific piece of ceramic jewelry which I made for her. From that, a range of unique, oversize and outrageous jewelry pieces developed.
Where do you get your ideas?
Inspiration comes with the seasons. The beautiful sunsets, the stormy skies, the surf and the evening calm provide the individual colors and designs of each piece.
Do you have a best seller?
“I HEART U” – an oversize, outrageous 2.5 inch red ceramic cocktail ring, is by far my most requested item.
What is your favorite?
My daughter’s favorite is “RockStar” a 6 centimeter ceramic cocktail ring in black and my favorite is “Caribbean Fling” a beautiful blue glass ring which covers three fingers of my hand.
What do you see yourself doing in 5 years?
In five years time I hope to be a little more outrageous in design and still only 38 years old.
Have any advice for people trying to start their own handcrafted business?
Believe in yourself. If you love your product then why wouldn’t everyone else love it too? Never give up, just persevere.
“In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different” – Coco Chanel.