The Clay CoOp will be offering classes in its expanded space, ‘The Classroom’. In this space we will be offering many new opportunities for our community to connect with clay and learn from our artist instructors. Check out the information below to see what best suits your needs:
Rolling Admission Classes
8 weeks - $280
These classes are perfect for students of all skill levels who like to follow their own lead. You know what you want to do, you just need help getting there! We’re here to guide you. Our student directed classes offer an open studio environment with direct one-on-one access to qualified instructors. Classes will max out at 8 students to maintain an ideal intimate student to instructor ratio. These classes operate on a rolling admission platform which means there is no beginning and no end. Classes will meet once a week for 2.5 hours. On your first day you will be provided with a 25 pound box of clay. All necessary tools and materials will be provided. Additional clay is always available to purchase if need be.
Instructor: Chris Landers
Instructor: Chris Landers
Curriculum Based Classes
These classes have a more structured learning environment. Beginning to end, there will be an instructor helping you through the course with a clear goal in mind. Classes will vary in direction and skill level from session to session so keep an eye on our calendar to sign up! Classes will meet once a week for 2.5 hours. On your first day you will be provided with a 25 pound box of clay. All necessary tools and materials will be provided. Additional clay is always available to purchase if need be.
Beginner and Intermediate Wheel
Thursday (3/28-5/2) 6:30-9pm
Instructor: Chris Landers
6 weeks - $240
In this class students will learn the fundamental skills of the wheel while being exposed to more complex ideas of aesthetics and function. In addition to developing a working knowledge of the ceramic process, students will be introduced to design as well as contemporary ceramics topics and aesthetic sensibilities.
Introduction to the Wheel
Saturday (3/2, 3/9, 3/16, 3/30, 4/6, 4/20) 10-12:30pm
Instructor: Chris Landers
6 weeks - $240
In this class students will learn the fundamental skills needed to create pots on the wheel. In addition to developing a working knowledge of the ceramic process, students will also be introduced to design as well as contemporary ceramics topics and aesthetic sensibilities.
Contemporary vessel maker John Christopher Landers [American, 1985-P.]is interested in the current domestic landscape. “Shouldn’t the objects we utilize on a daily basis be carefully curated to bring us joy, not just picked up off a store’s shelf?” Landers asks. With a formal education in design, he chooses to push his pieces toward his modern and unique sense of ergonomics and aesthetic innovation. Often choosing to add an element of discovery to his work, Landers finds “It’s important to me that the user forms a relationship with my objects and I find that happens most frequently when they experience something pleasant and unexpected.” Utilizing his education in art he draws influence from historical objects and methods. These influences, which are steeped in tradition, help participants find context in his work. Internationally exhibited and domestically distributed, his ware can be found in private homes and restaurants throughout the United States.
Open Studio (for currently enrolled students)
There is no instruction or guidance during these times
Monday (6:30-9pm) Wednesday (3:30-6pm) Thursday (11am-1:30pm) Saturday (12:30-2pm)
Saturday open studio is available to anyone who participates in the studio and is an open Q&A session. On the third Saturday of each month we will have a special event- critique, special technique, presentation, or cultural excursion.This is open to the general public free of charge. More information will be posted on our calendar.
Monthly - $175
For those who are interested in a space to work outside of the offered classes. The Classroom Membership provides you with 24 hour access to The Classroom space during non-educational time with access to all of it’s equipment. Clay is purchased separately from the CoOp and covers all associated firing and glaze costs. Members also receive a discount on classes, purchases from The Catalyst Gallery, and workshops!
Introduction to Alternative Firing
Saturday 4/27 2-4pm @ The Clay CoOp
Saturday 5/18 10am-6pm @ Ray’s Studio
Instructor: Ray Bogle
Workshop participants will learn about several alternative-firing processes. First session Ray will talk and demo at The Clay CoOp about the basic processes and preparing pots. Second session will be held at Ray’s studio in Prince Frederick MD about an hour south of D.C. This session is 3 weeks after 1st session to allow time for people to make pieces. All materials included along with bisque firing prior to the second section of the workshop.
Each person should be able to fire the following:
- 3 Pit Fire Pieces
- 3 Traditional Raku Pieces
- 1 Single Step Naked Raku piece
A menu of mini workshops:
Stylize your own course; hop on, hop off. Choose from a menu of instructional thematic classes for a hands-on experience. Whether you are beginning, intermediate or advanced sign up for all the classes and follow a progression of instruction or take only the sessions you want to pursue to build your own personal style. Choose the methods and techniques which best fit your interests and creative direction, whether you are expanding your repertoire of skills, seeking inspiration or wanting to work in a studio setting. Each session will consist of a hands-on demonstration with time to develop personal work with guided instruction.
Build your own tool box with materials specific to the forms you choose to build and acquaint yourself with the most recent methods of clay construction.
Work at your pace and skill level while benefiting from the interaction with other members in the class and exchange of ideas. At the end of each session, forms will be completed to reflect the subject covered in the session. To get the most of each session, participants should plan on using open studio time to complete their projects.
Instructor: Natalia Kormeluk
Package - 4 classes $250 Includes 25lbs of clay
à la carte - $70 + Clay
March 12: 6 -8:30pm
KNOW YOUR CLAY! Why pinching is essential to all methods? Explore how to move clay. A series of exercises will be presented to develop forms through pinching while recognizing clay properties and the physics of clay. Spiral wedging and Ram’s Head wedging will be demonstrated, practiced and explained. Composite constructions will be introduced by joining multiples to create larger whole forms. Topics such as wet clay strength, armature and three-dimensional design as well as proper drying, storing, surface treatments and function vs sculpture will be discussed. Pinched forms, simple or composite will be completed at the end of the class recognizing the value of working in a series. Personal creative thinking and approaches to clay will be encouraged.
March 19, 6-8:30
SCULPTING AND WEDGE COILING: Concepts of Oriental Wedge Coil and how it is used to construct large pieces. The class will construct forms using the Wedge Coil method to create a sculpture. Topics such as adding new clay, developing the outer “skin” of the clay, shaping with a variety of tools, compressing, collaring, curving, paddling and working with equal thickness will be addressed throughout the class. Students should expect to complete one form in class and a second one on their own time with proper resolution of surface and orientation.
March 26, 6-8:30pm
SLAB FORMING PROCESSES: How to create free-thrown slabs big and small, establish desired thickness and compression, work with hand tools equipment, with and without slab roller, and develop a series of functional cups and cylinders. The class will apply templates, learn to store and dry clay for appropriate consistency, finish edges and seams, explore surface treatments with textures, use the potter’s wheel to attach bases and learn to dry finished work. At the end of the session participants should have a series of cups or cylinders.
April 2, 6-8:30pm
SQUARE PLATES, BOWLS & PLATTERS. Using special sequential steps with slabs, tools and equipment will be introduced to allow for consistent efficient functional form-making. Students will learn to prepare, store, and dry their clay to a proper working consistency in order to achieve wet strength. A set of forms will be completed by the end of class. (depending on skill level, March 26 session is recommended but not required.)
May 7, 6-8:30pm
GLAZES, GLAZING & TREATING THE SURFACE: What are the different ways of applying a glaze? The class will explore how glazes are formulated, and how they could be modified for a more personal approach. Topics to be addressed are glaze fit, glaze adjustments, line blend, the impact of ingredients make on a glaze and the role it plays on the overall statement of the work created. Students will glaze their own bisque ware and test a line blend with one glaze of their choice using oxides or stains.
May 14, 6-8:30pm
THE SEAMLESS CYLINDER: The Mitch Lyons Technique of forming a seamless cylinder will be demonstrated and used to create cylindrical forms of your choice. From vases, to pitchers, to tumblers, to sculptures the technique works! The class will practice the methods, use the tools and materials provided to create their own seamless cylinders according to the Mitch Lyons’ approach of rolling and stretching clay. There will be problem-solving along the way, as well as an exploration of creative modifications. Each student will have several pieces completed by the end of the session.
May 21, 6-8:30pm
THE HAND BUILT TEAPOT: This session will explore the essential elements surrounding the functional teapot. Slab experience from earlier sessions will be refined and directed to constructing the body, spout, lid, base, and handle to construct the parts of the teapot. As a composite form, particular attention will be devoted to connecting different parts to create a dripless pour, a balanced asymmetrical sculptural form and a fitted lid.
May 28, 6-8:30pm
SURFACE TREATMENTS: MIXING & DECORATING WITH SLIPS & UNDERGLAZES. This class will explore all things related to mixing and using slips and underglazes on leatherhard clay and bisque. Traditional and nontraditional techniques of slip trailing, monoprinting and sgraffito will be covered including the painted stretched slab.