We’ve worked with Bishops Cleeve Primary School for a number of years producing quality, collaborative ceramic masterpieces, most of which are proudly displayed through-out the school.
We thoroughly enjoy our visits and it appears the school do too! Here’s what Arts Development Officer Mrs Parks has to say about our relationship:
“Always polite and puts all at ease whether paid teaching staff, classroom assistants or the unpaid voluntary helpers who make such a difference to the children’s experience of clay. Jon is always totally responsive to ideas and suggestions from the teacher planning the day and he or his friendly & helpful staff, respond promptly and enthusiastically to all the administrative details that schools need.
Jon’s encouragement and gentle, open manner with the children never fails to put all at their ease and get the best outcomes possible.
They love his sense of fun and even the teachers forgave him his jokes! It is always evident that Jon has a wealth of experience working with children of all abilities and he seems to have an intuitive feeling for the best approaches to take with each individual. His enthusiasm is infectious and our children gain valuable memories or working with a professional artist who is happy to share his skills and passion for all things muddy!
It exceeded my expectation as the children were more original and Jon’s demonstration of different ways of forming the animals and borders were so clear that all the children had a range of choices to make and were able to adapt the techniques shown to suit their animal and their own ability.
I just know the highlight hasn’t happened yet…it is the moment that the children see their fired pieces and those wide eyes and happy faces make it all worth while!”
Mrs Parkes is also an extremely talented maker in her own right. Examples of her work can be seen here.
We welcomed Churchdown Osteopaths to the Pottery a few weeks back for an afternoon of potter’s wheel fun and creativity. The group was x15 members strong and everybody had plenty of opportunity to make pots on x8 potter’s wheels as well as creating some hand-built gems when they were resting from the wheels.
These three teachers from Dean Close Co-Educational Independent School in Cheltenham came and spent a day with us in November learning about clay and making techniques.
This is what they had to say about their experience:
“We all learnt so much and helped us to reinforce the basics whilst giving us the confidence to pass our knowledge onto the children we teach.
A highlight had to be throwing a pot! We all loved it and can’t wait to get practicing.
Sarah and Jon were so friendly and welcoming and their experience and knowledge was excellent. Thank you both so much.”
We’ve been on the festival circuit of late providing top quality, fun and engaging pottery sessions for guests and visitors at some of the most reputed events in the UK.
At the tail end of May, we spent three busy and enjoyable days at The Hay Festival of literature on the Herefordshire/Wales boarder. One of the global themes at the Festival was ‘Trees’. Graphic designer and kids zone producer Aine Venables produced stunning branding and motifs made up of stylised bows, birds and foliage. This was displayed through-out the festival site and on promotional material and signage.
In discussion with Aine, we proposed a collaborative project where by participants co-create clay trees adorned with hand modeled bugs and forest creatures.
By way of introduction, I threw a pot on the potter’s wheel, the form rapidly turning into a tree trunk before the appreciative audience. The accumulative results looked amazing, especially once we added hazel twigs to simulate the branches. Families and individuals squashed clay leaves to the branches to complete the visual effect.
By the end of our three day residency we had produced no less then x9 collaborative trees with an abundance of woodland creatures peeping out amongst the undergrowth. We love it when participants bring their own interests into the clay modeling and if one scruitenised the collaborative work, you might well encounter the odd t-rex, unicorn and tractor!
A few days later we found ourselves at the Cheltenham Science Festival working with quite literally thousands of children and families all eager to try their hand at clay work. We had been invited to facilitate clay sessions in the MakerShack, a large, interactive space with separate stations and a host of different science related activities for visitors to engage with.
We were situated next to the digital printing stand – pointing up the similarities between ancient clay construction techniques and those of the ultra modern. We encouraged visitors to our stand to make mini coil pots by curling thin rolled snakes of clay around a small paper cone. The digital printers created 3D form by layering synthetic material. Very similar making techniques – just different tools!
The residency at the Science Festival lasted six days and we helped approx 1000 visitors a day create coiled cones and watch them transform into penguins, flowers and elephants to name but a few project interpretations.
Children’s workshops in the ½ term Holiday
31st May 2017
We are delighted to announce details of our fun, creative and pirate themed children’s workshop sessions planned for the rapidly approaching ½ term holiday.
Youngsters will take a spin on the potter’s wheel to make a pirate galleon filled with rogues and treasure.
Captain Long Jon Potter and his crew of ceramic sea-dogs will be on hand to aid the seafaring creativity:
Those young landlubbers and scallywags who visited the Pottery back in 2006 might recall our ‘Pirates & princesses’ children’s workshops. We reckon everybody loves a bit’ a pirate and the sessions were fit to bursting. Eleven years on, we thought it was high ‘tide’ we hoisted the jolly roger and readied the rowlocks for another voyage of pottery pilfery. We set sail on the 31st . Arrr me hearties!
The children’s terracotta creations will be fired and ready for collection from the Pottery approx. one month later.
Sessions are designed for two age groups although younger and older siblings will never be turned away: 11.30am-1pm 4-8YRS and 2-3.30pm 9-12YRS. Places cost £15 per child with a 10% discount for x3 or more places booked. Telephone or email booking essential. 01531 633886 firstname.lastname@example.org