Hood Faculty and Alums “Making Good”
Two members of the Hood community – Jacklyn Scott and Kristin Müller – are among four co-authors of a forthcoming book- “Making Good: An Inspirational Guide to Being an Artist Craftsman”. The book will be released on April 28th.
Jacklyn is completing her degree in the MFA in Ceramic Arts program and also works as Hood’s studio arts manager while Kristin is a Hood alumna (MFA, 2008) and adjunct faculty in Ceramic Arts. Their co-authors are Tommy Simpson and Stuart Kestenbaum.
The book is a collection of interviews with forty one artists accompanied by more than 260 photos showing the artists, their work spaces, and their creations. According to Jacklyn, one of the authors’ main goals was that “the book serve as a primer for inspiration to motivate young, middle aged and senior individuals who may be looking for guidance and ways to respond to their inner voice, to take risks and take action with their artistic practice.”
The full text of our chat with Jacklyn is below.
How did you get the idea to do a collection of interviews instead of a full-length book?
We wanted to feature the stories of various artists in different craft-mediums to cover a wide range of experiences. Someone who grew up knowing they were going to be an artist will have a very different experience than someone who went to school to be a doctor and then changed directions mid-career to become an artist. We wanted to represent as many of these instances to make sure the book is relatable. The concept of the book is simple, to present forty one makers/artists who have pursued their passion of making art and making a living with illustrations and personal narrative about how they have made their way in the art world. We prompted the featured artists to address specific opportunities and challenges that have shaped their careers asking them to specify pivotal moments, influential people and opportunities that spurred them on.
What goals did you have for this guide when you set out to write it and did you achieve them?
Our hope is that the book will serve as a primer for inspiration to motivate young, to middle aged and senior individuals who may be looking for guidance and ways to respond to their inner voice, to take risks and take action with their artistic practice. The book is visually engaging, a sort of window into the lives of makers, their practice and the interesting ways in which their creative practice takes form and reaches others.
How did you meet your co-authors?
Kristin Muller is my mother and I met Tommy Simpson when I was very young and he was collaborating with my mother in the clay studio. Now, we are colleagues in the art world. He is a force of nature, moving through various media including clay, rugs, wood, and printmaking.
What key message did you set out to pass across by writing this book?
We hope that our readers will find inspiration to set forth on their own creative journeys and to take risks in their own practices.
How long did it take and how were you able to balance this alongside work and other commitments?
I am working towards my MFA in Ceramic Arts, but thankfully the program is mostly weekend intensive. So after work, if I wasn’t in the clay studio, I was camped out at Starbucks over-caffeinating myself. I also drove home 8 hours every weekend so Kristin and I could meet with artists to interview them, or have conference calls with those that were further away.
What was the hardest part of writing this book?
The hardest part of the writing the book was trying to capture the spirit of the artist in a few succinct paragraphs. Some of the artists gave us hours of content, and others we needed to probe a bit more for the interesting tidbits of their history and process.
What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
Gosh, I feel so lucky to have had the opportunity to talk to these forty one artists who have so much wisdom and charisma!
Any memorable moments while writing the book?
I met so many talented artists in the process.
Who are your target audience?
Our target audience are those who are just beginning their careers in art, looking to transition into being an artist mid-career, artists who need a push.
Any plans for a sequel?
Not yet… but we have talked about putting together an exhibition of work from the artists involved in the book.
Click to order Making Good: An Inspirational Guide to Being an Artist Craftsman on Amazon.com.
Assistant Director of Marketing and Communications
- Arts & Humanities Graduate Programs