Virginia has always had a fascination with dogs since childhood. The family dogs were the original inspiration for her ceramic sculptures which are characterised by big paws, floppy ears and an endearing goofiness.
Virginia graduated from the University of Wolverhampton in 1997 and became an artist in residence at Edgbaston High School in Birmingham. Later she set up her own studio in Northamptonshire and now works as a full time ceramic artist in Warwickshire.
Her dogs begin their lives as extruded tubes of hand built clay, which are then manipulated into the animal forms. Once dried and fired, the dogs are placed into a brick pit, which is packed with old paper and sawdust and set alight, resulting in a wonderful smoke-fired finish. Virginia creates markings on the dogs by masking areas with foil preventing exposure to the smoke. Here is a short video clip of Virginia at work.