About MudPuppy Studios

Mudpuppy Studios Salt Spring Island

Mudpuppy Studios is a production pottery studio producing functional ware which is mainly thrown on the potter’s wheel with alterations and additions done by hand building. The clay is high fire stoneware fired in a 15cu. ft. gas kiln introducing salt/soda at 2350F. The effects are spectacular but unpredictable. The wares are sold locally on Salt Spring Island through the Waterfront Gallery or Artcraft/ Wintercraft shows. Please leave a note on the contact page if you require any information on any particular piece.

John’s Artist Statement

I am a mixed media artist. I have always prescribed to Marshall McLuhan’s expression “The medium is the message” meaning that the medium embeds itself into any message it would convey, creating a symbiotic relationship to influence how the message is perceived. The mediums most commonly used in my work are ceramics, wood and metal. Any one of these materials may become the primary medium in a piece. Each new creation typically starts with a rough sketch, pulled from a small notebook that resides on my person at all times. Often however, before I can extrapolate that sketch into a final design, a search for the appropriate companion materials must occur. This process must not be taken lightly.


Much like grammatical punctuation, these found elements will serve to clarify the intended message, either in context or in concert with the sum of its parts. The finished project is therefore not simply about the destination, but the journey as well.


In describing my own work, I would say it is often whimsical or witty by nature and tends to bridge the gap between folk and fine art.

The Kiln Area

Working with Earth, Fire, and Air.


We often hear the term fire suppression, but what we are doing at Mudpuppy Studios is attempting to understand, encourage and control the flame. The malleable clay comes from the earth, and with ancient sensibility and the touch of the potters hands; the clay is transformed into functional service within our daily lives.


We feel a primordial connection to clay, deep within every part of our bodies, creating a desire to get our hands dirty. This desire is deeply rooted in the creative process. It is as much a journey as it is a destination. It satisfies and certainly nurtures our spirits.

About Atmospheric Firing

Mudpuppy Studios is offering a unique experience for yourself and your group.


A salt/soda firing is done approximately once a month and you can attend and assist with the kiln opening. The door is taken down and each piece is removed from the kiln. You will see firsthand the effects and results of an atmospheric salt firing, on the pottery. John and I will be there to answer all questions and explain the process as we unload. You will have an opportunity to select and purchase your favourite piece as it comes out of the kiln, still warm! I will take reservations for yourself or your group to attend. Only one group will assist at a time and we will do our best to fire that kiln to meet your schedule while on Salt Spring Island. There is no charge for this.


Leave a message on our Contact Page for more information or to book a date at the Mudpuppy Studios!