April Brimer, Pursuits Studio

Jul 7, 2024 | Muses

Get to know April Brimer, Pursuits Studio 

CC Muses: In Greek mythology, the muses were Zeus’ daughters and the goddesses of the arts, sciences, and literature. Today, in fashion and beyond, a muse is a source of inspiration. Next up in our “Consign Couture Muses” series we are pleased to hear from April Brimer, the ceramicist, artist and instructor behind Pursuits Studio

Back in February, part of Team CC joined April for a ceramics class in her North Portland studio for our (belated) holiday party! The studio is bright, clean, and brimming with beautiful examples of April’s work. Many of the fixtures in the space celebrate the potential of clay: ceramic coat hooks by the door, a ceramic shade for a hanging pendant light, a ceramic towel holder by the sink. Instant inspiration! In under three hours, April guided us through hand-building ceramic mugs, bowls, and plates. If you’ve been curious to try ceramics, or have never tried hand building, we absolutely recommend booking a class with April! She is a patient and encouraging teacher who will help you be successful! We’re so pleased to highlight April on the blog this week. 

What’s your name and what do you do in life? Tell us about yourself!

Hey, I’m April. I’m a ceramic artist and pottery teacher. I run Pursuits Studio, where I make my own work and teach others how to hand-build with clay.

What inspired you to start Pursuits, and what is meaningful to you about it? 

Before I opened an educational space I was working as a full time ceramic artist. It was feeling very solitary and I wanted to find a way to work that would let me engage with other people more. Opening a space with room to host others has been incredibly rewarding and has led to some really meaningful moments.

What is something that you do differently from others in your field?

My studio is a little different than the typical community pottery studio. First of all, it’s almost exclusively focused on hand building. So instead of designing the studio around wheel throwing, there’s a lot more tools and resources focused on table top building techniques. Secondly, the studio is small and intimate, which allows me to offer more one-on-one guidance to participants as needed.

What is somethinng that you are proud to bring to your industry? 

A calming space and a patient instructor 🙂

Tell us about a milestone for Pursuits or something that you’re especially proud of.

2024 marks my tenth year working full time in ceramics. I couldn’t imagine a more joyful and fulfilling way to spend my time.

What inspires you? Where do you look for inspiration?

It’s important for artists to look for inspiration outside of their medium. I look at architecture, nature, and 2D art like paintings and illustrations. It’s easy to be inspired if you’re attentive to the small details around you and take note on what lights you up.

Do you think about how to incorporate environmental sustainability into your business or practice? What challenges have you encountered, or successes have you had?

Absolutely. There are a lot of ways we can minimize environmental impact in the studio like only firing the kilns when full, recycling clay, keeping our waste out of the water supply, and looking for locally sourced materials whenever possible. 

Tell us about your favorite outfit. What makes you feel your best, or the most “you”?

I’ve always been a bit of a tomboy. I’m hard on my clothes so I love workwear or anything that I can wear in the studio and also out and about. Lately I’ve been looking for bold colors and fun pieces that I can incorporate for an extra bit of levity and dopamine.

Three things you’ve loved lately?

Three books I really enjoyed recently were;

Northwoods by Daniel Mason

Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell, and

Orwell’s Roses by Rebecca Solnit.

Bonus question- what are some small businesses you love?

I’m a big fan of the ceramics community in Portland. There really is something for everyone. A few favorite studios worth checking out: Sandy River Studios for a farm-to-table pottery experience, Calvin Wong Ceramics for artist-run wheel classes, or Fancy Banana studios for monthly memberships.

Find April & Pursuits Studio on Instagram here.