A Conversation With: Daniel Dooreck

Whimsical, unpretentious, thoughtfully imperfect...Welcome to the world of Dan Dooreck of Danny D Mud Shop. We visited with Dan in his garage studio to get a behind the scenes look at his workspace, hand carved pottery, and work process.
Tell us about Yourself. What drew you to clay?
I'm a hands on type of guy. I have a long history in restaurants and studying wine. What drew me to clay was just an interest in taking up a new hobby. It was tactile, and I loved making something with my hands.
You recently moved from Toronto to LA. How has living in LA impacted your art?
The western influence definitely has had an influence from living in LA. Desert themed stuff. There's also a lot of great artists in the community - everything from tattoo artists to illustrators to painters etc.
What do you love most about what you do?
My time management, engaging with clientele, and seeing my pieces in other people's homes.
What guides you in approaching your work? Can you walk us through your process?
Nothing really guides me. A lot of it is just spur of the moment. There are some graphics I see online that I can envision on a vase, so sometimes that makes it there.
Describe your creative process. How do you set the tone and ambience for your studio and day?
I keep it pretty rugged to be honest. My garage is really cold but calm in the mornings. I just put some music on and get to work. Whatever is pressing that day. 
What music do you like to listen to while you work?
I've been listening to a lot of folk music lately. Lots of Big Thief.
You mentioned you also love tattoo design...any favorite artists or pieces that inspire your work?
It's pretty eclectic. I have a buddy in LA named Zach working at World Famous Tattoo. There's a guy in Knoxville, Tennessee, a guy in Montreal. More and more as I develop my style, I use less and less direct references, though I'm figuring out a lot on my own now. 
What has been inspiring you as of late?
January has been definitely a calmer month for me. I'm catching up on a lot of custom orders that I was able to delay til now and February. So I'm taking my time on these and feeling inspiration from the diverse content these custom pieces are giving me. 
What do you like to do to unwind and recharge?
A long drive or a fun dinner.
Can you tell us what's next for Danny D's Mud Shop?
Not sure, I take it day by day. Things change all the time. For now, grateful to be featured by cool brands. Feeling fulfilled and happy day to day, even on the tough ones, is the most important.
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