Come to the Creative Side: The Artistic Life of Grimm


Sneha Raghavan

As her art class works on their latest project, McKenzie Grimm stands at a
table, glazing her newest mug. She jokes with the students and gives them tips on
their pieces as her own masterpiece blooms to life in her hands. Each day, Grimm
comes in and devotes herself to teaching several art classes, including Art 1,
Ceramics 1, 2, and 3, and AP 3D Studio. Alongside helping her students create
beautiful pieces, Grimm works on intricate, skilled ceramics pieces.
“I love being an art teacher,” said Grimm. “My room is likely the messiest
class in the school, but my students are engaged and having a great time.”
From a very young age, Grimm had an interest in art that only developed
as she grew. Grimm’s mother had an immense interest in crafting, and the interest
was contagious for Grimm. She headed to college with the intention of going into
dentistry and took art classes in freshman year.
“[I] fell in love with art all over again,” said Grimm. “The rest is history.”
As an art teacher, Grimm instructs students on several techniques,
depending on the course. Art 1 dabbles in a variety of subjects, including
sketching, ceramics and paper crafting. AP 3D studio focuses on building
concentrations and pieces for AP portfolios. Ceramics 1, 2 and 3 offer different
complexities in the field of ceramics, and students focus on creating masterful
clay pieces.
“My favorite part about teaching is sharing my passion with my students
and seeing many of them find a new love for art,” said Grimm.
Grimm enjoys all of the classes she teaches, but Ceramics is closest to her
heart. In addition to teaching, Grimm actively participates in ceramics outside of
school. She has recently started a pottery business and has a personal pottery
wheel at home. Using her masterful skill and artistic passion, Grimm creates
dinnerware, organic and realistic pieces and experiments with coloring clay, fusing
glass and exploring mixed media.
“I love sharing my passion with all of my Ceramics students,” said Grimm.
“Ceramics is my heart and soul in and out of school.”
Grimm explores with other artistic ventures at home. In addition to her new
pottery business, Grimm custom paints shoes and spends time crafting with her
daughters. Her hobbies also extend into gardening, remodeling her family’s older
home and reading. Grimm’s artistic passion is laced into many of her personal and
educational activities, and she spreads her love and skill to her students.
“I push my students pretty hard, in terms of their work,” said Grimm. “I’m
constantly moving around the classroom offering suggestions, answering
questions, demonstrating and encouraging students to push their boundaries of
Many of Grimm’s students push their boundaries enough to enter their
pieces in competition. Grimm and her students are currently in competition
season, balancing strict deadlines, photographing work and stacks of paperwork.
According to Grimm, competitions involve immense work, but the effort is
extremely rewarding. Because of the work involved in both competition and
in-class projects, Grimm emphasizes that art students should realize that the
course requires patience and effort.
“Both of these are necessary for success in any type of media,” said Grimm.
As both an art teacher and ceramicist, Grimm has several outlets to express
her passion. Despite the incredible time and effort involved, Grimm finds love in
her work and greatly enjoys spreading that love. She sees art in her future as well.
“I hope to continue to teaching others and continue to build my business,”
said Grimm.