Erica Davidson | Episode 886
Erica Davidson is a ceramic artist and co-owner of Circa Pottery in Bellingham, Washington. Erica creates handmade ceramic vessels and focuses on surface design that is inspired by the cycles of the natural world, folk tales, block printing, and botany. Erica enjoys the physicality of translating her inner life into functional vessels.
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Why a brick and mortar business?
I think that we both really enjoy the visual appeal of having art in the world for people to see. We weren’t really getting into the business to make money. Which why we didn’t start with having an online shop because we wanted people to come and pick up the mugs and feel the work.
How important is the online presence for the on the map business?
I think a lot of people find out about us through Instagram. We actually don’t have a Facebook page yet. We have a website but we mostly meet other artists through Instagram and that just seems to be the way of the world these days.
Did you and Brittany draw up a business plan?
Technically no. (laughter) Although my husband, an attorney, was like, You guys should have a business plan. And we were like, What is that? We just want to sell people’s pots.
Did you guys come up with contracts or legal documents that you needed to have in place?
Yes, my husband fortunately does corporate law and he said, I will do all of your legal work for you, from the beginning so that was something that we didn’t have to worry about too much. Thankfully. That’s pretty helpful.
In terms of reaching out to potters, how open were people to saying yes to the invitation?
I don’t know about percentages but most people said yes. A few people said no, I think only like two. There were some people who said yes, they want to maybe later in the year. So it was mostly positive.
How do you overcome having a location that may not have a lot of foot traffic?
I think being part of our art walk has been really helpful because the downtown Bellingham partnership program posts a map and people are pretty excited about doing that. And I think that Bellingham is such a word-of-mouth place and people are always excited to learn about new businesses opening that I feel like people are really starting to know that we are there even if they don’t see where we are. And we are also thinking about possibly moving to a bigger store front at some point.