workshops & making
Inspired by the Pottery Throwdown? Looking to discover your new passion or escape from phones and screens and modern life? Want to make your own mug or a unique present for a loved one, or are you after a family activity where everyone can create, build and bond - AND take home more than memories?
Ravn Clay was created in 2020 to help people "Play with Clay". A Kickstarter campaign funded a kiln, and now we have a rustic, well-equipped studio in the heart of beautiful Northumbria. Housed in the old timber loft at Heatherslaw on the Ford & Etal Estate, the studio is an inspirational space where you can work with stoneware clays and discover for for yourself the benefits of an ancient, tactile and ultimately uplifting craft practice.
A typical three hour session will see students introduced to a variety of pottery methods - pinch, coil and slab building. These are the foundations for good ceramic practice (and in some ways an essential first step before moving on to the flashier younger sibling of wheel-throwing) and can produce a very wide range of functional or decorative ware. Then you will have the time and freedom to create whatever you want.
Sessions are limited to six participants per class, so that everyone gets a fair chance to access the support their pottery ambitions might require. All you need is a little imagination, and the child-like enthusiasm we all have for playing with mud! Oh, and an old shirt to wear in case you embrace the clay with suitable verve!
All of these pots were made by Ravn Clay students in one of the three-hour workshops.
Work remains at the studio for firing & glazing before being collected or posted on to their creators.
At the end of the session, I will fire and glaze your pieces so that you have a physical memento of your time in Northumbria and at the studio, and you should be able to collect (or have your work posted out) within 14 to 28 days.
This is a working studio, so all participants are expected to follow some very simple but crucial guidelines and rules. Children should be supervised by a parent/guardian at all times, and everyone should understand they have a responsibility for the safety and enjoyment of every other participant.
These are workshops rather than formal classes. I am still learning (and will always be learning) what clay and heat and glaze can do, so I cannot promise to be your source of all ceramic wisdom. But I have the space, tools and equipment to help you make something utterly unique and remarkable. Pottery is something that makes me very happy (and supports my own mental well-being). If I can share that rather than an encyclopaedic knowledge of clay, I will consider my time well spent.
I look forward to seeing you soon in the workshop.