Like sister, like brother. Senior Max Beuck initially became interested in wheel throwing through his sister, Madeleine Walton, who graduated in 2012 and is currently a ceramics artist.
Beuck has been wheel throwing since freshman year, and is now passionate about his elective.
“My sister learned from Mrs. Brault who is my teacher now,” Beuck said. “She convinced me that it could be a fun art to do so I wanted to try it and I really [liked it].”
Wheel throwing teacher Barbra Brault has worked with Beuck for three years. Over the years, Brault has seen his strong work ethic and love for wheel throwing grow.
“[Max] has a passion for wheel throwing, and he enjoys the challenge of bringing new designs to completion,” Brault said. “He is always on top of his work and pays attention to it, and in ceramics this is so important. He carefully stores his pieces in progress, checking to make sure that everything is covered and protected. This sense of time management has served Max well. ”
Like many wheel throwing artists, Beuck follows a specific process for every art piece he fabricates. He uses materials like clay, a pottery wheel, a kiln and paint. Most of the time he starts with an idea of what he wants to make, wedges up some clay, centers it on the wheel and starts throwing.
“I wait [until] it’s at a “leather hard” state so I can trim the “foot” of the piece and give it the final touches on the actual structure. [When it] dries it goes into its first firing called a bisque firing. The last steps [are] to glaze the piece, add any other aesthetics to [it], and fire it one last time.”
With the many projects Beuck has completed over the years, his favorite projects have been the pieces that he can actually use such as plates and cups. He likes the idea of “getting something out of my hard work.”
“Knowing that I’ve made something by myself and using it have just been something really cool and rewarding,” he said.
Brault appreciates the different pieces Beuck has created. She knows that he recognizes the little details that make art stand out, and she also notices his effort and time into his work.
“Max’s designs stand out, as he has a very clean look to his pieces,” Brault said. “His pieces are not fussy, nor do they say ‘look at me,’ but rather they are straightforward, clean and decisive.”
Through his years of experience, Beuck has learned to be patient — there are a lot of steps and processes one has to go through when making a piece of art.
“It’s also taught me to be delicate with my work and finding the little things because they do matter,” he said.
And with all the demanding school work Beuck is piled up with, wheel throwing helps him to decompress.
“Wheel throwing gives me that sense of creativity and an artistic sense in my life,” Beuck said. “It helps keep the stress from my hard classes away and allows me to just work creatively on my own.”