Since childhood Susan Halls has been obsessed with animals and curious about their character. Growing up in the 1960's in a traditional small town in Kent, the animals she saw in the English countryside were both her inspiration and her friends. She not only drew, but drew strength from them and would constantly be painting and modeling variations of what she saw in the surrounding fields and farmyards.Her animal sculptures convey "a kind of animal truth" rather than their mere appearance. Dogs, horses, birds, pigs and rabbits are of major interest, although other species appear now and then. Susan believes that her drive to make animals is tied up in her need to possess them - like effigies and totems.All ceramic techniques fascinate Susan Halls, allowing her to use whatever process best suits the subject to express and develop the form. Paperclay mixed with nylon fibre is a staple, as it can be abstracted to suggest only a minimum reference to the animal. Her firing techniques are varied, but most are low-technology, sawdust, smoke or wood-firing, and her work often incorporates metal elements such as nails and shards of steel.Susan Halls was awarded a Designers Guild Scholarship in 1989 to study petrified remains at Herculaneum and Pompeii in Italy. As well as being the subject of several British public commissions, her work has been shown in group exhibitions in Britain, Europe and Japan and is in public collections in Britain and the US.