Summer 2016 Classes

I'll be teaching the following classes late June through September in my studio at SPA. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or teaching inquiries.  

Ceramics Classes

Clay and Glaze from Scratch: Introduction to Ceramics Chemistry
If you’ve learned to throw pots or hand-build using commercial clays and glazes, this class will fill in the missing pieces in your ceramics education. What are clay and glaze made of? What’s the difference between the clay veins you see in soil and the stuff you buy? What’s the difference between high and low fire materials? What happens when a pot is fired and how can we use our knowledge of the ceramics chemicals and raw materials to help us make the work we envision? This intermediate class is primarily didactic and students are welcome to bring technical questions related to current work.
Dates: Tuesdays, July 12 and 19th from 10:30-12:30, July 26th from 12:30-2:30
Sliding Scale Fee: $120-150, plus $10 Materials/Firing Fee
Level: Intermediate, Adults and teens with previous basic clay experience welcome.

Making Work You Love: Intermediate Technical Skills
In this class, students are invited to develop a body of work over three months, from initial sketch through final production. Beginning from sketches, students will identify the technical, construction, surface design and firing skills best matched to the work they would like to make, and leave the studio with plans a technical foundation for making the work they love. Students can also use this course to troubleshoot technical issues or reenergize themselves within their current ceramic work. This class is primarily didactic and demonstration-based, with some hand-on clay and glaze tests, depending on the needs and interests of the students.
Dates: Tuesday, August 2, 9, 23rd from 10:30-12:30
Sliding Scale Fee: $120-150, No Materials Fee
Level: Intermediate, Adults and teens with previous basic clay experience welcome.

Ceramics and Family History
In this class, we will explore the relationship between clay and our personal ethnic, cultural or family history. Consider the ceramic objects you hold dear, an heirloom platter used on special occasions, a grandfather’s favorite coffee cup, tiles from a trip abroad? We’ll explore functional and non-functional uses of clay from an anthropological perspective, discuss why certain forms, surface designs or firing methods developed globally and explore the ceramic traditions that connect to our own ethnic, cultural or personal histories. Students will explore the technical aspects of their chosen tradition and leave with plans/designs for a new body of work.
Dates: Wednesday, July 20 from 9-10:30AM, August 3rd from 9:00-1:30
Sliding Scale Fee: $120-150, No Materials Fee
Level: Intermediate, Adults and teens with previous basic clay experience welcome.


Fiber Classes

Wool to Cloth: Children’s Introduction to Fiber Arts

Students will learn all the steps in turning wool from a fluffy mass of fiber into a piece of woven cloth. We will cover drafting and spinning using a drop spindle, plying yarn into usable fiber and basic weaving techniques on a frame or backstrap loom. Students will leave with a beginner’s spinning kit, including a drop spindle and roving.
Dates: Friday, July 29, 5:30PM-6:30PM, Saturday, July 30th, 9AM-10AM, Sunday July 31st, 9AM-11AM.
Sliding Scale Fees: $45-75, plus $10 materials fee
Ages: 7-13, younger students who have already participated in Studio Place Arts Community Open Weaving Studio are also welcome, with teacher’s permission.

Note: Following our Saturday morning session, students are invited to join us at the Heritage Stage at Currier Park, to continue practice some outdoors spinning while listening to master weaver and storyteller, Norman Kennedy of the Marshfield School of Weaving. This free concert is part of the Barre Heritage Festival.

Building and Weaving on a Backstrap Loom
Backstrap looms are an efficient, portable and relatively simple way to experiment with making cloth or tapestries. The basic design of the loom appears across multiple world cultures, with slight regional variations. In our first session, students will learn the basic skills to weave on a prepared backstrap loom. In our second session, students will learn how to string their own loom to take home.
Dates: August 20, 9AM-11AM, August 21, 9AM-11AM
Sliding Scale Fees: $60-80, plus $20 Materials Fee. Students who do not wish to pay materials fee can be provided with a list of materials to prepare and bring from home. 
Level: Beginner, adults and older teenagers welcome. Younger teenagers with previous fiber arts experience welcome with teacher’s permission.

Basic Skills Community Weaving Studio:
As part of Studio Place Arts’ city-wide fiber initiative, I will be hosting a pop-up community weaving studio at Studio Place Arts from July 15th-August 27th. This is an opportunity to experiment with weaving on a backstrap loom and participate in making pieced tapestries that will be displayed throughout the Heritage Festival.

Open weaving times are available during all Studio Place Arts public hours and self-guided tutorials and materials are available on site. If you would prefer to attend during a facilitated weaving time, I will be present on Wednesdays mid-day from July-August to support weavers as they learn.

Please note: 8 backstrap looms are available for public use. If you would like to reserve a block of time with several looms for a group, please contact us to ensure that they are available. No previous experience necessary, instructions and self-guided tutorials are available on-site during Open Weaving Time, but no facilitator is present. During facilitated weaving times, I am available to provide support and troubleshoot as participants learn basic weaving skills. This is not a structured class, drop-ins welcome. 

Ages: All ages are welcome to participate, but children under 14 are required to have a parent present. Families are welcome to attend together and suggested activities for younger age groups are available on-site.

Cost: Free, but contributions are appreciated to cover cost of materials.

Open Weaving Time:
Running July 27th-August 27th, Tuesday-Friday, 11AM-5PM, Saturday, 12PM-4PM

Facilitated Weaving Time:
Wednesdays, July 27th-August 24th, 10:30-1:30—excluding August 3rd.