Rick Stafford has been working in ceramics since graduating from Central Washington State College in 1969. He earned a degree in art with a ceramic emphasis along with minors in psychology and recreation. He made use of his art background for the next eight years as a recreation therapist.
In 1977, Rick went to work full-time as a studio potter. During this time most of his production work was sold by Happy Things catalog based in Colorado. He worked in reduction-fired stoneware showing at galleries and crafts shows in the Pacific Northwest. In 1993 Rick began developing his own unique ceramic process based on the Japanese “Neriage” technique of colored and marbled porcelain. Rick has formulated his own pure white porcelain body that vitrifies or melts at 2300 degrees Fahrenheit. Metallic oxides are added to the clay to achieve different colors.
The different colors are then laminated into design blocks, sliced like Christmas cookies, and rolled into color sheets. These sheets are then cut into different decorative motifs and used as applique on porcelain plates. The finished product is similar to fused glass: Glossy, smooth and translucent. The pieces are food and dishwasher safe.
Rick introduced his fused ‘Neriage” porcelain at the American Craft Council San Francisco show in 1999. In 2001 Rick won a top 100 award from the ACC. Since 1999 Rick’s porcelain has been shown in galleries from coast to coast.
Rick lives on Bainbridge Island in Washington’s Puget Sound with his school teacher wife, Bonnie. When not in his studio or enjoying his four grandsons, Rick is a competitive masters swimmer, an avid fly fisherman, and fan of the Seattle Symphony.