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Course outline: The development of advanced throwing skills including the creation of enclosed forms, and centering and throwing large amounts of clay will be the focus of this course. Students will develop the skills required to make more complex lids that are well crafted, good fitting, functional and appropriate. Skill development will be continued in order to duplicate pottery forms to create sets and related multiples. New forms will be created by altering and reassembling thrown sections. The techniques and skills of creating, decorating and glazing will be applied to finish work appropriately, mindful of attention to details and the principles of functionality, design and aesthetics.

Roger Kerslake. A very nice teacher with lots of humour who is very precise, specific, patient and has constructive feedback. He shows us beautiful pieces. Teapots, big bowls, plates, handles, spouts, and all thrown clean and with style. We have to combine throwing and hand building together and our class goes nuts. We make great stuff. Some a bit far fetched and Christine the only one who has definitely found her niche, but we all have fun and create something special. He shows us handles, decoration technique’s, knobs, cool slides and painting on ceramics.

His finishing is an art on its own. Just to look at him while he is working is fun. I am in trance while he uses the tip of his pinky to finish a rim and by the way he holds and uses his ribs. He is comfortable with all sizes and while telling us English stories and jokes, he demonstrates a lot in our week. I am having a great time. He is an amazing teacher and I am impressed by his way of working. We combine wet and leather hard pieces, make 3 piece vases and wine jars. We stick leather hard with leather hard together with some slip and scoring and have to stand up because the pieces are getting higher and higher. Helen is in her element. Finally! She is making big, beautiful & bold pieces. Her creativity has been hit and she makes dancing wine goblets & funky lamp shades. The colourful decorations from Wayne are still in her mind and the pieces are starting to fit together. I sit across from her and while she has been wandering around for weeks, she is now sitting down, throwing and focused as can be. I finish my wine jar and am really proud.

And the lids. I am the lid-lady. I love everything about them. Making, forming, shaping, trimming, glazing and finally taking them of and putting them back on the pieces they fit (or don’t fit) when they are glazed. with the amount of different lids Roger showed us it is going to take me a year to practice and get them all right. This is too cool. Instead of throwing a chunk of clay and trimming it to death, I am now throwing lids. You might not get my excitement. For me, it was the icing on the already perfect cake. There is too much to tell you about what we learned. Roger shared with us not just all his knowledge about ceramics, but he also showed us how you can put something from yourself in your piece. It was an amazing week, and I am hoping that his path will cross mine again sometime in life. Because one week with Roger was not enough.