Our small but perfectly formed team headed to Leominster in January for a spot of CPD with storyteller and writer Carol Graham.
She put together a morning of literary activities and exercises designed to develop and explore our creative writing skills. We all thoroughly enjoyed our time with Carol and my personal favourite with reference to the editing process:
‘Words are like clay, you can add to them or take them away to create an effect’
We were delighted to welcome back work experience student Evie over the Christmas holidays. Back in 2012 Evie spent a week with us, helping out with workshops in educational and community settings. As a fully fledged sixth former, Evie is persuing a career in the creative industries. We asked if she wouldn’t mind writing a few words about her influences and the work she produced at the Pottery this time around:
I am currently completing my A-levels and am in the process of applying to university to study Fine Art. Right now in Art, I am conducting a personal investigation into the Cornish town of St Ives and the work and style of its artists, after spending many happy childhood holidays there. In particular, I am studying the work of Ben Nicholson, an iconic British artist that is mostly known for his Cubist still life compositions. I love the rough and unpolished nature behind Nicholson’s work and his reduction to simplistic forms. In these various sized bowls I created at Eastnor Pottery I have tried to recreate the weathered surfaces and colour palette that Nicholson took inspiration from within St Ives. Having done work experience at the pottery in 2012, it sparked an interest for me in ceramics, which I hope to pursue at university. Jon has been kind enough to let me return and develop my understanding of ceramics and experiment with different techniques until now, unfamiliar to me. Previously my practice has been drawing which offers precision and accuracy; however I have really enjoyed the unpredictable and challenging nature of working with clay.
Ethan recently sampled the delights of RAKU firing with our friend and fellow potter Bill Moore in North Somerset. We first met Bill as undergraduate ceramics students. Sarah and myself studied at Bath, whilst Bill developed his potting skills down the road at Bristol. Post graduation we used to employ Bill’s exceptional throwing skills if we had a large order of pots to full-fill. Details of Bill’s classes can be seen by visiting his Clayability website.
This is what Ethan is what he had to say about his experience:
“I was immediately excited because ever since starting pottery as an apprentice here just over two years ago, I have had a fascination with the striking glazes that come from Raku firings. The day exceeded all my expectations tenfold. First of I have to thank Bill for giving me so much information throughout the day, and thanks to John as well as they were both such nice people to spend the day with. All of my pots despite a couple of breaks through the process came out better than I could of hoped for and will make fantastic gifts for my family at Christmas. These were by far my best pots to date and I want to keep them close to myself and family to cherish them for a long while as a reminder where I have started. I plan to keep exploring the huge world of raku glazing as its random effects and spectral range of colours are just what I want from a glaze. Unexpected results from an unexpected day.”
Once a month we’re going to encourage Jack, our new Digital Marketing Apprentice to post on the Eastnor Pottery website about his exploits. Here’s what he had to say about September’s trials and tribulations:
After a wonderful warm welcome to the business back in August, I’ve seen just how much fun can be had at Eastnor Pottery. Talk about being dropped in the deep end, the last month has seen endless amounts of brilliant customers taking part in making their clay creations with the business’ busiest summer ever! Thankfully nothing has been too challenging and I’ve had a great time working with the drop-in groups as well as the social media and blog updates, such as scheduling the month’s entire blog posts and the new #PotterOfTheDay and #PotterOfTheWeek on Twitter. With two months under my belt now, I feel like a true Eastnor Pottery member and I’m certain the coming year will bring even more fun, especially the Mud Runner in October now all 2,500 Medals have been finished and popped in the kiln.
Introducing Jack, our brand new digital marketing apprentice. Jack, a local fella who has come to us via those lovely people at Creative Alliance based in Birmingham. Here’s what he had to say about his first week in Eastnor:
The first week of working with Eastnor Pottery and the Flying Potter, as part of a 12 month long apprenticeship in digital media marketing, has been very interesting as well as welcoming. The introduction into this new working environment has been relaxed and informative, which has given me a good understanding of the work undertaken by Eastnor Pottery, such as the many workshops and opportunities the business offers to individuals and organisations. I have already experienced a few workshops as part of the Early Hurly Burly scheme as well as helping to finalise the installation of Jon’s musical and ringing pottery pieces within Hereford. I’m looking forward to getting more stuck in with the work as time progresses, and I think I will thoroughly enjoy my time working here.