CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Randi Selbe moved to West Virginia in 2003 for love of a guy.
He encouraged her to rediscover another passion.
Selbe, a native of Wheeling, had been working as a senior graphic artist for Kaufmann's Department Store in Pennsylvania. When she moved to Charleston to marry, her husband felt badly about her giving up her job.
"He said, 'Why don't you do something you love rather than something you have to do?' " she recalled.
Selbe took the suggestion to heart.
When she was a graphic design and illustration major at Kent State University in Ohio, she had dabbled in pottery for fun and loved it so much that she told herself she would pick it up again one day.
That day had come.
Selbe started taking classes, first at Taylor Books and then at Capitol Clay Arts. She developed her skills in both thrown pottery — the kind done on a potter's wheel — and slab built, or constructed from flat slabs of clay that are cut and formed.
"I approach everything like a work of art," Selbe said. Details are important, and she's willing to try a lot of things to achieve interesting results.
Plants from her home garden and old doilies are used to make impressions in soft clay. Selbe wields an X-Acto knife — she is grateful for skills learned in art school — to cut intricate designs in semi-hardened clay.