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Shawn’s Ceramics Journey

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Shawn’s Ceramics Journey

Shawn embarked on his ceramics journey in 2023 and has now become a regular participant in the Ceramics Program at Wyndham Park Community Centre (Community Shed). Over the last year Shawn’s confidence and technical ability working with clay has evolved. Shawn has been very open minded in trying various methods and techniques such as hand building, wheel throwing and slip casting.

In December 2023 Shawn showcased some of his ceramics in the Level Up Ceramics Art Exhibition; he received much praise for his efforts and creativity. One of his standout pieces was a slab build ceramic coaster set, which truly captured his artistry. The fine stoneware piece took many months to construct, refine, glaze and was elegantly finished. This art piece, which Shawn designed and constructed was quite challenging due to the level of technical skill involved. Whilst making this art piece Shawn showed great commitment to ceramics and perseverance to not give up

As part of the end of year ceramics exhibition, all of the class participants were given the opportunity to write an artist statement reflecting on their work. The following is Shawn’s artist statement:

By Melissa Murphy-Vella

Shawn Van Roosmalen

“My aim was to make artwork that I can use every day and be a showpiece when I have visitors. I was inspired by functional ceramics and researched different styles and designs. I began by using the pottery wheel to create the bowl with the frog. The coaster set was created using the slab construction technique. I used a twig and pine cone to imprint the design.

As Shawn’s ceramics teacher it has been a great pleasure to teach, guide, support and encourage him to achieve his goals. Through my time working with Shawn I have observed qualities such as perseverance, attention to detail and creative thinking, which must be encouraged and nurtured, so that he can reach his full potential as a ceramic artist. I look forward to seeing many more pieces of art created by Shawn in the future.”

Shawn's Journey ┃Harmony's Perspective

Art is a meaningful way for individuals to express themselves. It acts as an easily accessible medium and allows for personal growth. For some, it’s a hobby and for others, it’s a career. For Harmony Home and Community Care’s Shawn Van Roosmalen it’s a passion and pathway.

Shawn first started ceramics classes 6 months ago with the intent to try something different. He began his journey at the Wyndham Community Park Shed, taught by workshop head, Melissa Murphy-Vella.

Shawn has since gone on to be featured in local exhibits and continues to push his skills to their limits. Sitting down with Shawn, it was clear that ceramics gave him a focus and joy that had been missing in his life.

Shawn explained that ceramics gives him a creative outlet and provides a goal. Through ceramics, Shawn has continued to hone both his creative skills and life skills. He has acknowledged areas he wants to improve and ways of working towards them.

Through ceramics, Shawn has learned to turn mistakes into ingenuity. Using his creativity to further his passion. Shawn has since expressed interest in other physical creative hobbies, such as model kits and lego. Despite being unable to do ceramics at home Shawn has found other ways of continuing his creativity.


Moving forward, Shawn hopes to create more original types of work and move away from premade molds. He hopes to create works with functions such as ashtrays, coasters, and garden sculptures.

The team at Harmony Home and Community Care cannot wait to see what Shawn does next and the heights he’ll reach.

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