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leaning tower of pisa pot painted

Meet Katie Glover new apprentice

We’re as pleased as punch to welcome Katie to the team. Hurrah!

Katie’s our new and talented Junior Content Producer Apprentice and is being trained in collaboration with Creative Alliance in Birmingham. One of her first tasks here at the Pottery was to write an introduction for our website:

“After completing my BA Hons in Textile Design in 2020 at Falmouth University, I wasn’t sure not what to do next. With months of uncertainty, I was offered an apprenticeship as a Junior Content Producer with Eastnor Pottery. I’d completed a week of work experience at the Pottery in the summer of 2019. I remembered my time being filled with potting skills, beautiful scenery, camaraderie and lots of laughter. How could I turn down a chance to work with Jon and Sarah again!?

Illustration is at the heart of my practice. During lockdown I have set up in business as a freelance designer. I have an Etsy shop selling a range of products including, amongst other things, cards, prints and stickers. My role as Junior Content Producer involves promoting fabulous courses and classes the Pottery offers. I’ll be getting to grips with their social media and promotional material, capturing the customers experience.

After the apprenticeship, I will have the confidence and skills to further pursue my career in the arts. Although illustration will always play apart, working as a junior content producer will provide me with a variety of new tools and skills. I am sure my time at the Pottery will be a fantastic learning experience and tremendous fun!

Below are some examples of my work including some pots I made during my work experience at the Pottery in 2019.”

Pot illustrated painted with seals and waterSelection of small animal and drinks themed cardsleaning tower of pisa pot paintedleaning tower of pisa pot written text wonky potselection of prints cats and dogs framed and unframed

clay handmade campervan painted green on grass with flowers in the background

co director jon williams shutting up shop temporarily for covid 19 lockdown january 2021

co director jon williams shutting up shop temporarily for covid 19 lockdown january 2021

But please don’t fret! As soon as we are able to commence our fantastic pottery experiences and potter’s wheel courses, we’ll let you know right here on the Eastnor Pottery website.

All courses and experiences for January and the majority of February 2021 have been postponed.

All our own gift vouchers and those purchased from our lovely partners will be extended.

If you have booked a session or purchased a voucher we will honour your commitment to us.  It doesn’t matter how long it takes, your pottery experience will be here ready and waiting for you.

For those of you who managed to visit us before Christmas, we are still processing your brilliant pottery. It may take a little longer than usual, but as soon as your creations have emerged from the kiln we’ll drop you an email to let you know they are ready for collection. If you have purchased Post and Packaging, we’ll let you know when your masterpieces have been dispatched.

We look forward to welcoming you back. In the meantime, stay safe and well.

Much love

Jon and Sarah xx

childrens hands in wet squidgy clay at cheltenham science festival 2019

childrens hands in wet squidgy clay at cheltenham science festival 2019Under normal circumstances (remember them!?) we’d have been up to our eyeballs in clay at the brilliant Maker Shack as part of Cheltenham Science Festival.

We’ve been involved in the Makershack since its inauguration in 2017. Last year we encouraged visitors to make a press molded brick, using real brick clay from Coleford Brick and Tile Company based in the Forest of Dean.

The bricks were assembled into a giant castle and we worked with nearly 10,000 people over the x6 days of the festival! – that’s a shed load of bricks! The sheer volume of visitors meant we had to build a fresh structure each day, deconstructing the building at the close and re-claiming the material for the next morning.

Athough the Makershack was primarily aimed at Primary school aged students – (and man, there must have been very few Gloucestershire schools who didn’t visit the show), on Friday night grown-ups got to play with the technology in a special after-hours session between 8pm and 10pm.

Although it’s full-on, we love the #makershack and look forward to sharing the scientific benefits of engaging with clay, with festival visitors in 2021.

slipware pottery rabbit made by sarah monk from eastnor pottery herefordshire for easter bunny trail at puzzlewood

terracotta bunny rabbitt made by ceramic artist jon williams from eastnor potteryslipware pottery rabbit made by sarah monk from eastnor pottery herefordshire for easter bunny trail at puzzlewoodMaking ceramic bunnies is not Sarah and Jon’s usual bag, but when, Puzzle Wood asked Eastnor Pottery’s co-directors to take part in a Great Pottery Rabbit trail, they couldn’t resist the challenge!

Puzzle Wood is a magical ancient woodland in the Forest of Dean. It’s a great place to explore with the kids, as Sarah and Jon have done many times with their own children. It’s also a popular and famous TV and film location – Star Wars and Doctor Who to name but two!

All the local Potteries and Makers in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley were invited to make a ceramic rabbit to be hidden in Puzzlewood over the usually busy Easter weekend.

The Eastnor Potters started making their contributions back in February. Sarah decided to hand coil hers – a technique she hadn’t used for over 20 years, as she thought it would be fun to do something different. She used terracotta clay because of its deep, earthy colour fitting for a rich, earthy forest environment. Once built, she covered the whole rabbit in white slip and scratched simplified flowers into the surface. She then added splats of cobalt blue achieving a classic blue & white ceramic effect.

Jon chose to assemble his bunny from eight separate throw sections made on the potter’s wheel. He too used terracotta clay but didn’t add colour or glaze, opting instead for the natural colour of the fired terracotta.

Unfortunately because of COVID-19, Puzzle Wood remained closed to the public over Easter. Undeterred, they published The Great Puzzlewood Pottery Easter Trail online as a colouring competition instead. Participants could download line drawings of each bunny (different one each day) colour them in and submit them for judging. Some of the marvelous entries can be seen on Puzzlewood’s social media. Check out their TwitterFacebook and Instagram feeds.

Ceramic easter bunny colouring competition by puzzlewood gloucestershire

 

ceramic artists jon williams and sarah monk take part in the digital hey clay festival 2020
ceramic artists jon williams and sarah monk take part in the digital hey clay festival 2020
This is the 6th time we’ve been involved with this fabulous FREE event and usually we’re full to the rafters with lovely people having loads of fun on the potter’s wheel. As we’re not re-opening to the public until 1st July, we’ll be celebrating HeyClay by hosting live tutorials, studio tours and insights into our making across our social media. Here’s a timetable of LIVE events here at Eastnor Pottery and the Flying Potter:

Friday 15th May 2020

11am     Studio Tour (Insta) 😍
1pm      Throwing a pot with Jon Williams (Insta)🤩

Saturday 16th May 2020

10am     Studio Tour (Facebook)😍
11am      Throwing a pot with Sarah Monk (Insta)🤩
1pm       How to make a donut with Jon Williams (Facebook) 🍩
2pm       How to make a soap dish with Sarah Monk 🧼

We hope to see you there! 😀🌈