We had the good fortune of connecting with Kira Ni and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kira, what habits do you feel helped you succeed?
Things like waking up early, being organized. Working in a clean environment makes it easier to start and finish projects on time, this one is especially important if you are working from a home studio. Probably some of the habits that I have picked up while working at the office, checking up on clients, making sure they got all the data in order to make a decision, make sure to follow up on time and to remember/know people. Without even realizing it all these office habits help me to work with my clients.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am a potter currently working using two techniques: slip-casting and hand-building. In the last few years, I have been working with porcelain only, making objects in pastel colours or earthy tones. My recent adventure working with porcelain material was slip-casting. I expected the process would be much easier, based on the books read and youtube tutorials watched. Unfortunately, it wasn’t as easy, or in my case, in order to get the level of quality, I was after I have spent more than a year on just testing and developing the final results. If there would have been a chance to attend a workshop with a professional in the field that certainly would be the best option, but haven’t found one locally so practice practice practice. I work in small batches, everything is very individual and is done by me only. I am not after quantity rather quality and happy clients all around the world.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
🙂 this is where my mind wonders and things about life after Covid-19 will just be a normal seasonal flu. I would ask my friend to come in June, as it is White nights season here in Estonia. Will ask a friend to take a late flight so that when a friend arrives it would be around 11 pm and outside it is still bright as day. During the winter months, we barely have any daylight here, so when summer comes life doesn’t stop after 11 pm. I would pick up a friend from Tallinn airport, we would take a tram and ride through the city, it is a beautiful short ride. Will hope off at the Telliskivi creative districts, a lot of local artists and entrepreneurs and eateries here. Will suggest to try some local foods and just enjoy looking at the neighbourhood and people. The following day we would go to Kalamaja district which is most notable as one of the best-preserved wooden architecture areas in Tallinn. The quiet neighbourhood has long been known for its colourful hodgepodge of old fashioned, working-class houses. Before heading to Tallin old city, which is just 15 min away, we would stop at Kalamaja Pagarinakood for some freshly baked cinnamon and cardamom rolls. Tallinn Old city has amazing 13th-century buildings and cobbled streets. We would explore all the narrow streets, take a good amount of pictures and definitely local souvenirs like woollen scarfs or wooden spoons. Visiting Old city means that it is also pancake time, and there is only one place that makes them right since 90’s its called Kompressor. On the last day, we would take bicycles and just ride from Kakumäe beach to Vimsi which is about 30km bike ride. The ride will be either through the forest or by the sea, definitely will get some sunburn. Will enjoy lots of ice cream from street vendors. The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Definitely Amber Creswell Bell and her book Clay. I can’t describe how grateful I am to Amber for including me into Clay book as one of the 50 studio potters from around the world.