Paula Gill Article in HTA Newsletter

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Handmade Tile Association Newsletter

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Red Step Studio

Paula Gill

Bremerton, Washington

Red Step Tile

Red Step Studio tiles are made in my Bremerton, Washington studio, which overlooks my garden of perennial and vegetable beds and a sloping wooded bank planted with Pacific Northwest natives. I find the antics of the resident songbirds, northern flickers, owls, squirrels and mountain beavers both charming and challenging; but they all become inspiration for my work on a daily basis. I love being outside tending the garden with my hands in the soil; I guess it comes as no surprise that I have discovered a way to keep my hands in the earth through my work. My tiles are my way of sharing this joy of being in nature with others.

With a background in graphic design, printmaking and watercolor painting, I started exploring the world of tilemaking in 1997 and haven’t looked back since. Through continual experimentation I have been able to create a wide range of tiles with only terracotta and white clays, underglaze color pigments and a clear finish glaze.

My carving technique, directly influenced by woodblock and linoleum printmaking, give the work a unique style and add unrivaled depth, texture and liveliness not replicated by other tile making methods. In all, it is a thirty-step process, all by hand (no molds are used), that takes from six to eight weeks to complete each one of kind tile.

Custom orders are welcome. I have been commissioned to create over 200 unique tiles for all the patient rooms in a Southern California medical center, and have received two 1% for the Arts commissions for large scale framed tiles. I have carved special tile portraits of homes and family farms, a grandfather fishing his favorite trout stream, a bride’s wedding flower, a family’s vacation trailer, house numbers, and fireplace murals.

I sell my tiles through my website, local Northwest art shows, and throughout the year at Collective Visions Gallery in Bremerton, WA. During the month June I am having a solo show of new mosaic tile pieces.

Seven years ago, inspired by Josh Blanc and the Handmade Tile Association, a group of tilemakers in the Seattle area foundedĀ Artisan Tile NW. With over 30 members, we are actively planning our 6th annual fall Handmade Tile Festival, and co-sponsoring a Potter’s Council Tile Conference in Seattle at the end of June.


Paula Gill

PO Box 63, Bremerton, WA 98337

Facebook: Red Step Studio

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