Who is @Potboyerik?
Whilst trolling Instagram for some creative minds to follow, I stumbled upon a true glazed gem. My art-fiending eyes had discovered a profile enriched with some of the most beautiful handiwork I’ve seen. It took me about .6 milliseconds to hit that follow button. I mean, it’s not that often that I get a total pottery boner, but this was love at first sight.
Erik Naranjo, also known as @potboyerik is an Arizona based potter who produces some seriously lovely bowls, cups, and more that’ll put your household china to shame. I was very grateful for the opportunity of interviewing him over his DM to get the scoop on his latest and greatest.
When did you first start throwing?
I was 17. My senior year of high school.
And what first got you interested in ceramics?
Seeing my ceramics teacher throw a pot. The moment I saw him throw, I knew it would be something I would love.
How long do you usually spend on a piece?
45 mins to an hour
Awesome. Would you consider art your main focus or are you attending college/working?
I would say it’s a mix. I think balance is key to success. I try to get on the wheel every day before work and I am currently not attending college so I can focus on making more work and to also work more. I do plan on going back to college next semester.
That really is the dream though. I’m glad that you’re making time for your real passions. A lot of people can be negative about the whole pressure to do everything at once and they forget where their actual happiness is. (Implied kudos)
Yeah, I’m actually happy where I am right now. I think progress is also very important. I’m not at the same place I was last year, I’m getting better at pottery, been in a documentary, working more and paying rent, I think if I can better myself every day, then I am on the right path.
What inspires you to keep producing art?
I am inspired when I see work being created by master potters. I want to be that good. And seeing other people taking an interest in ceramics inspires me to continue making more work.
Before discovering the wheel, what did you imagine yourself as in adulthood?
Before I even discovered art, I never really imagined myself pursuing a dream. I was just going to go with the same motion most people do. Go to business school and hope for the best I guess.
During the next five years, what are your hopes for Potboyerik?
In the nest 5 years, I hope to finish college and support myself by making art.
Do you have any advice for the next generation of creative minds?
Be different (establish your own unique style). Try things you are scared of doing (in an art sense). Practice everyday and don’t give up on yourself.