Ceramic plate and vase by Cleveland’s P Thompson Ceramics (photo courtesy of Patrick Thompson)
Ohio Life

P Thompson Ceramics, Columbus

In 2020, Patrick Thompson began crafting his line of functional and timeless ceramic pieces.

Artist Patrick Thompson’s ceramic pieces embody a calming presence. He says his simple beautiful and functional pieces are reminiscent of the living space he shares with his wife and two daughters — inviting but not overly decorative. Each time he sits down at the pottery wheel, he aims to make something timeless.

“I’m not trying to create something that’s trendy and a throwaway, temporary piece,” he says. “I want longevity. So, the glazes that I pick and the designs that I make reflect those schools of thought.”

Thompson first tried ceramics during a high school art course. Soon after that initial art project, he was mixing clay and experimenting with throwing other pieces on the pottery wheel. That taste of creativity led him back to his passion in 2020, after working as a bartender for a decade. He had been doing commissioned ceramic work here and there along the way, but he decided to expand his creative business as the pandemic shutdown took hold, launching P Thompson Ceramics.

The Columbus-based artist had all the studio items he needed — a few pottery wheels, a pug mill, a kiln and a spray booth — so he started making pieces inspired by slow and simple living. He crafts vases, bowls and dishes, but his most popular items are mugs. He determines the shape, throws the piece, lets it dry and trims the bottom for a more refined feel.

Next, he attaches the handle, waits for it to dry, fires it in the kiln, waxes each piece’s feet, applies the glaze, wipes the glaze off of the wax and completes the final kiln firing.

“Then, it’s like Christmas, and about a day after that, you open up the kiln, and you hopefully have great results,” he says. “I’d say nine times out of 10, I’m really ecstatic, and that 10th time, it’s like, ‘You know what, I learned something.’ ”

Thompson is especially energized by making ceramic work for Columbus-area businesses, like 6-ounce mugs for Pistacia Vera, a French bakery; display mugs for A Carpenter’s Son Design Co., a custom furniture company; and drinking mugs for Florin Coffee, an independent coffee roaster.

“The things I look forward to making … half of it is just working with good people,” he says. “It’s definitely about knowing there is a sense of community and pride that goes into it.”

For more information, visit pthompsonceramics.com.