Barry Stedman studied 3-D design at Barnfield College, Luton, followed by a degree in ceramics at Westminster. After graduating with First Class Honours in 2009, he worked as part-time assistant at the studio of Edmund de Waal (who is Professor of Ceramics at Westminster).
In their use of strong colours, Barry's pieces are quite unlike de Waal's. The ceramics are preceded by paintings in watercolour or gouache, often made in the open air, where he is inspired by the light and patterns in the sky and the farms and fields visible from his home. Changing surroundings, such as those experienced on a moving train, also inform his work. These paintings are then reworked into larger, more abstract, oil paintings and ultimately lead to the ceramics, which he creates in red clay
with coloured slips. He works intuitively and energetically and, because the true colours of the pieces only emerge after firing, there is always an element of chance in his work, which retains its spontaneity and freshness.