Animal Art Pottery by Barbara Donovan | Outlaw Kritters Gifts & Jewelry for Dog, Cat & Animal lovers.
May 24, 2015


There are lots of cute, cuddly animal inspired products on the market, but Outlaw Kritters big, bold designs celebrates the cool, edgy side of animal lovers. Let's face it, our little fluffy four-footed friends, winged two-footed kids, and those kritters that swim, splash and fly, still have a wild side, so why shouldn't you!

A portion of your purchase goes to animal welfare charities so you'll not only get to enjoy your new Outlaw Kritters accessory, but you'll be helping an animal in need! Shop Outlaw Kritters gifts and accessories for animal lovers- click here.

Animal Art Pottery by Barbara Donovan

I met Barbara Donovan online several years ago. We were in the same blog circle –a group of bloggers who write about the same subject once a month and link each other’s blogs so the reader can get various perspectives on the same subject. I was always fascinated with her whimsical, yet often sarcastic animal characters that she created in her blog posts and on all her amazing pottery. So, when I started this blog, I immediately thought of Barbara and she graciously agreed to an interview. On a side note, I’m the proud owner of this beauty!

Crwo mug by Barbara Donovan

Her pottery even comes packaged with this cool sketch and fun business card!

Let’s check in with Barbara and hear her story.

My name is Barbara Donovan and I am a potter in Louisiana creating handmade functional pottery inspired by wild things and quirky pets.

How do animals inspire your artwork?

I’ve been drawn to animals for as long as I can remember, and as a child I wanted to be a veterinarian.  As it turns out, I’m pretty squeamish so it just wasn’t meant to be.  While animal imagery on my pots has been a constant over the years, the animals have slowly evolved from graceful, stoic, expressionless creatures to the questionable characters they are currently.  They are sometimes cute, often nervous, frequently snarky or grouchy, and more often lately, they are poorly behaved. The imagery is inspired by my pets, the stereotypical attributes humans assign to animals, or my observations about people and popular culture. 

 Ball Dog Love Mug by Barbara Donovan

What medium do you work in
(watercolor, acrylic, digital, pottery, photography etc.)? 

I currently enjoy working with mid-range domestic porcelain clay to make my functional pottery.  The pieces are wheel thrown, altered, and carved to accentuate animal imagery with colorful commercial underglazes brushed on before firing. After drying and the initial bisque firing, the pots are glazed with glazes I make myself and fired again in an electric kiln to cone 6.

Cone is a term potters use to describe the property of the glaze or clay. It can also be used to describe the temperature which is how Donna is using it here. Different temperatures are used for different outcomes depending on the glaze type or type of clay used). There’s a science to this stuff as well as a creative side.

 Dino Plate by Barbara Donovan

How long have you been creating art? 

I was always a crafty kid and preferred modeling clay, hooking rugs, or embroidery as opposed to drawing and painting.  It wasn’t until I took a ceramics class in my second year of college as a business major that I considered art as a career.  After one more clay class I was smitten and changed my major to Ceramics.  I received my BFA at Louisiana State University in 1986, and my MFA from Wichita State University in 1989.  I’ve been a studio potter since 1990.

 Foxy Candy Jar by Barbara Donovan

Do you own or have you owned any pets and if so,
tell us about them? 

I’ve had domestic mice and rats, canaries, parakeets, and cockatiels in the past.  Currently, my husband and I have a husky mix, a Catahoula hound dog, and a fierce little kitty that keeps them both in line. I have bird feeders outside my studio window and thus inadvertently feed the squirrels as well.

 Zombie Cat Mug by Barbara Donovan

What is your favorite piece of artwork you’ve created and why? 

Hmmm. This is hard. I don’t normally get attached to individual pieces, but occasionally if a pot I am particularly pleased with sells quickly, I might feel a little regret that it left before I was ready to let it go.  Sometimes I’ll keep a favorite piece for a while but “favorite” is often a temporary title that changes as the work progresses.

Anything else you would like us to know about your artwork or yourself? 

The nervous bunny is my alter ego.

  Thank You Plate by Barbara Donovan

 Want to see more of Barbara's cool work and get to know her better? You can find her here:


If you have a poem, artwork, song, photo or other creative animal inspired art  that you have created and would like to share on our blog,
please email to

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