Shrewsbury Winter Festival | In Conversation with Ruth Gibson


Buy-From Shropshire In Conversation with Ruth Gibson Ceramics



Name: Ruth Gibson

Occupation:  Ceramic Artist

In three words describe your work: Screen printed ceramics / bold black and white ?!



How did your business start? I have been self-employed  in the creative industries for 30 years but returned to study in my late 30’s and gained a first class honours degree in Ceramics and Sculpture. Whilst bringing up my daughter I have worked in a variety of disciplines from project management of public arts projects, designing and building funky bus shelters and seating, working on public and private commissions to designing and making products to sell. As well as teaching ceramics in a wide variety of situations covering primary and secondary schools, further education, university level and through public workshops. I have concentrated on my designer- maker practice over the last four years and the work had evolved in this time as I strive to create exciting new products that are unique to me and display my trade mark themes.   


Have you got a favourite piece? Why?

Yes I have ! My latest work is definitely my favourite and it happens to sell well too, which makes it a double pleasure! It's a long thin wall plaque printed with trees, hill and map with stones and pebbles decorated with blue and green glazes. I haven't given this a title yet but it is an Image of Earls Hill so maybe that could be the Earls Hill range?


With all that has been achieved in your career so far, what are you most proud of?

Oh wow now that's a difficult question. My degree installation created in 2003 was quite an amazing piece that I am still proud of. My early brick sculptures that were displayed in a Shrewsbury also helped gain my reputation locally as a sculptor. The work I made for the Wedgwood Museum is also work I'm proud of partly because there is a story behind the work and a rational for making it. It has also won prizes and got into International Print exhibitions, reminding myself that I am also a print maker. It had a significant effect on the direction of my work transforming my bowls from a functional item to a piece of fine art. This is why this work is so significant to me.


What do you love most about running your creative business?


Who said I loved it?!!! It's extremely hard work. You have to dedicated, passionate, slightly mad and be able to do absolutely everything from marketing and publicity, writing about your work, communicating with the public, selling, dealing with galleries, designing websites, accounting, applying to shows, taking work to events, driving long distances, designing and building exhibition stands, designing packaging and branding logos, oh and designing new work, making work, maintenance of equipment, IT manager, ordering stock. Anything I've forgotten?! I do love being in my studio at the bottom of my garden when the sun is shining and a good play on Radio 4 and work is flowing well!



What will people find when they come to see you at the Shrewsbury Winter Festival?

A whole range of my work from tiny black and white bowls for £10 to large ceramic wall panels up to £1000. Beautiful porcelain earrings and pendants and work about the Shropshire landscapes, hills, maps and trees feature heavily in my work.



What are you looking forward to most about the Shrewsbury Winter Festival?

Selling well before Christmas!


What are your plans for Christmas?

To relax with my family and friends and perhaps get away to the Welsh coast or hills for a few days.



Quick Fire Get To Know You Questions:


Favourite Colour?


Favourite Food?

Roast vegetables

Favourite tipple?



Playing guitar

Favourite place to visit in Shropshire?

Nipstone Rock Stiperstones 

What do you want Santa to bring you for Christmas this year?

Good health


You will find Ruth Gibson with BUY-FROM SHROPSHIRE's stand at the Shrewsbury Winter Festival this year. You can view all her work both on her website and via Buy-From Shropshire.