Written By Lynn Blamires
Everybody needs a pot and if they don’t need one, they want one. This has been going for a very long time. Museums are full of pots – Ancient American pots, old Roman jugs, Grecian urns, and Venetian vases, people have always wanted pots. I am no exception.
I have stuff and I need pots to put it in. While I don’t have any experience in throwing pots on a pottery wheel, I have dropped plenty of them.
I have stories about family members who pursued the art of making pottery, but not very far. My mother tried to throw a pot on a foot-powered wheel. Her apron sash got caught in the mechanism and she ended up wrapped around the wheel. My son took a pottery class in high school and now we have a cereal bowl with a face on it that holds a half-gallon of milk and a box of cereal.
I said that I am no exception to wanting pottery – I have some serving platters and soup bowls that I treasure. Creating art in the form of pottery can be quite satisfying. Here are some of Utah’s pottery classes you might consider:
Red Kiln is the place for clay in Salt Lake City, Utah. Their gallery showcases local artists’ work made right in the Red Kiln Studio. As availability allows, they rent space to artists, offer quarterly ten-week courses to adults, and have one-time experience workshops, as well as a romantic date night for couples. “Mud” tools and a few varieties of cone ten Laguna clay bodies are available for purchase. These are new. They carry select varieties of cone six and cone five clay bodies, but they do not provide firing services.
While classes have not yet restarted, Red Kiln typically offers 10 week quarterly classes for $250. Continuing students pay $225. At the beginning of the class, you’ll receive 25 lbs. of clay, which includes firing and glazes. Additional Bags of clay can be purchased. Students are given a shelf to keep tools, supplies, and works in progress. Community tools are available for use, but purchasing a basic pottery tool kit is suggested. Red Kiln sells these for $21 plus tax.
Red Kiln is an adult-only facility. Students must be 18 and over to register. Watch their website for information on when classes will restart at www.redkiln.org
Wheel thrown pottery has been an ancient practice that is still used and valued not as much as a vital form of food processing or water storage means, but as an art form of self-expression and a great source of therapeutic experience. Ceramic pieces are the subject of gallery displays; the flexibility of its process of creation allows artists to come up with unique pieces that captivate interest for its beauty and ingenuity. Some users claim wheel-throwing pottery is a therapeutic practice, while for others it is a fun experience of artistic entertainment.
A one-hour pottery wheel class is offered for $30 (ages 8 and up). The class includes one hour of instruction, materials, tools, and firing. A first-time visiting student will create a piece with the help of an instructor. They will fire the piece and have it ready in two weeks from the first class. A second visit will be for painting and refiring the piece. All glazes and tools are included.
Pottery Wheel for Two – ideal for a couples night out or a daddy-daughter date. Come with a friend or loved one and experience the process of creating pottery. This class includes all the materials needed to create a piece and one hour of instruction for two.
Create your piece during your pottery wheel class and come two weeks later to design and paint your piece and they will fire it for a second time. The second visit is also included in your reservation.
The class is $60 on Sale for $55. More information is available at www.handsonart4everyone.com
Ceramic Supply USA was founded with the dual goals of sourcing and supplying the ceramic industry with the best materials and supplies available while providing technical and practical support, and solutions. They don’t just supply materials but provide the knowledge, expertise, and experience to help make them work for you. Whatever your ceramic endeavors are, their team of engineers, craftsmen, and artists are there to provide solutions to your creative ceramic needs. Whether it is a single piece, production pottery, or a larger scale industrial production, Ceramic Supply USA has the expertise to provide solutions. Their combined R&D, manufacturing, and supply facilities ensure that they are working with you in the trenches.
One option provides a class pass for eight classes at the discounted price of $150.00 ($18.75/Class). You can choose to come to any of the Tuesday, or Thursday evening class sessions. Simply reserve your spot online for the evening you would like to come. Each class is taught by fantastic instructors and includes the use of clay, tools, and glazes. Firings are charged separately.
Another option is the studio pass. Get eight open studio visits at the discounted price of $80.00 ($10.00/Visit). A studio visit includes clay and glazes. Rental tools are available for a small fee and firings are charged separately.
A third option is the kid’s class pass. Bring your kids to four classes at the discounted price of $80.00 ($20.00/Visit). Kid’s classes are on Friday afternoons from 4:00-5:30 pm. You can choose to come to any of the Friday afternoon classes. Check the class calendar to see upcoming projects and simply reserve your child’s spot online. Each class is taught by one of their fantastic instructors and includes the use of clay, tools, glazes, and firing. Visit their website at www.ceramicsupplyusa.com. They are located in Salt Lake City.
As You Wish is a great place to flex your creative muscle and have some fun. In addition to expert assistance from their staff, you have access to their Idea Center. The Idea Center is full of paints, palettes, brushes, lettering tools, tape, pencils, tracing materials, vinyl stickers, stamps, sponges, Italian stencils, books of inspiration, and anything else you need to let your inner artist out!
Located in Farmington Station, As You Wish offers a beginning technique class for ages 12 to adult. Students will learn all the tips and tricks of the trade. Their talented instructors will walk you through and demonstrate each technique as you learn to create your own masterpiece. You will be amazed at what you can do.
As You Wish is also pleased to offer a variety of simple workshops for students schooled at home. Homeschool workshops are scheduled once a month and are designed to help you add a little art to your home school day. They have designed simple projects with step-by-step instructions, focusing on basic painting techniques. They would like to have you take a break and let them do the teaching.
Project to-go kits are available. Each kit comes complete with your pottery piece, paints, brushes, any other necessary tools, a tracing template, tracing paper, and a step-by-step instruction guide. Some projects include video instruction. Go to their website at www.asyouwishpottery.com for more information.
As You Wish Pottery
Steve is the creative force behind Two Dogs Pottery LLC. He studied ceramics under John and Diane Shaw, renowned artists and professors from the University of Utah. Upon Steve’s graduation, he stayed on as a teacher’s assistant for 15 years with the Shaw’s. John and Diane have greatly influenced his style. Steve’s pottery is art in a functional form. To understand this, you’ll need to hold a piece in your hand. Then, you will be able to appreciate the difference. This is why Steve only sells his pottery at markets and not online. Donna is the business “end” of Two Dogs Pottery LLC. She manages the schedule and finances. However, Donna has taken her craft skills and mixed them with hand-built pottery. She has begun her journey in the ceramic world with her husband. Together they form Two Dogs Pottery LLC.
Adult wheel-thrown classes are $25 per 90-minute class; clay is included. Steve is currently teaching classes on Tuesday evenings 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm at 659 East Pioneer Road, Draper, Utah.
Children’s 4-week pottery classes (ages 7 – 12) are also offered by Donna for $85. Please call to schedule your class at 801-523-6334. Clay is included in the cost along with two kiln firings, glazes, and brushes. Their website is https://two-dogs-pottery-llc.business.site/.
Tyler and Mercedes Nyland are founders of The Kreative Kiln. They are a young ambitious couple filled with passion for the arts. As they have discovered the artists inside themselves, they gained the desire to help others find their inner-artist as well. They absolutely love what they do and love their fantastic team.
Located in Pleasant Grove, The Kreative Kiln offers a unique pottery wheel throwing experience for you and your date, bachelor/bachelorette group, team building, birthday parties, and more. Come make some pottery with them! Their motto – You make it, we glaze it, and you take it home and use it.
The Kreative Kiln offers an unlimited Kreative Membership that includes unlimited access to the studio during open hours. This membership allows you to come in and use all the tools, supplies, and studio space needed for throwing clay on the pottery wheels. Unlimited Kreative Members will receive a 20% discount on firings & glazing and all clay & tools purchased at The Kreative Kiln. It also includes cubby space for your projects and access to their pottery instructors for any questions you might have while throwing clay on the wheel. No hidden fees. Cancel or renew at any time.
They also offer introductory and intermediate pottery experiences, as well as a kid’s hand-building workshop. Find more information at www.kreativekiln.com.
Patty’s Ceramics was established in Orem, Utah in 1987. It all started with a love of ceramics, a single mold, a Duncan certified teacher, and a big dream. They built their ceramics studio and moved to Provo in 1999.
They offer ceramic painting classes with both basic and advanced instruction and are constantly keeping up with current tools and products. They are always trying new techniques and processes. They love to experiment, so if you have any questions or suggestions come in and they try them out.
Classes are $3.50 each. Students work on whatever projects and techniques they like. They will need their own paints and brushes which are available for purchase.
Discover the Magic and Mayhem of clay at Muddie Buddies in Bountiful. Courses on wheel throwing, hand-building, and kid’s classes (ages 9-15) are offered. In the “Fun Stuff” category, there are some fascinating offerings:
Barrel Firing Workshop – Barrel firing is a fascinating and primitive method of firing pottery. The outcome is uncontrollable and very often exceptional. It is a fun alternative to glazing pottery. This four-week class is $100.
Horse Hair Pottery – Using horsehair or any hair for that matter or feathers will leave a carbon pattern on the surface of a properly prepared vessel. Come learn about Terra Sigillata, Burnishing, and Carbon Trails. The four-week class is $100.
Saggar Firing – A Saggar is an ancient method for controlling the atmosphere inside the kiln while firing. Today they use this method to create unusual reactions on the surface of the pottery. This is free to all Muddie Buddies.
Date Night – Would you like to give pottery a try for “Date Night”? Would you like to gather a few of your friends or family for a pottery experience? You can arrange the details.
Girl’s Night – Would you like to gather “The Girls” for a pottery experience? A “Girl’s Night” with friends or family would be a lot of fun! You can arrange the details.
Family Night – How about trying pottery? Would you like to gather a few of your friends or family for a pottery experience? You can arrange the details.
Go to www.muddiebuddiespottery.com.
White Stone Pottery is located in Alpine, Utah. Wheel thrown pottery lessons are offered at the White Stone studio. Students 16 and older are taught how to make pottery using electric pottery wheels. Classes are for all levels of students. This is a class for those who may wish to experience the process of making clay pottery for the first time using the pottery wheel (not a manual kick-wheel). Perhaps you have had some previous experience and would like the opportunity to continue developing skills to create useful items for your home or as gifts. Classes are designed to help any who wish to continue their growth in a variety of projects or to increase the size and quality of the pieces produced.
Find information on the schedule, fees, and registration at www.whitestonepottery.com.
Located in Orem, Scera Arts Studio offers Sceramics – the perfect night out for couples, families, or friends. Taught step-by-step by an incredible Scera Art Studios pottery instructor, you will learn fun ceramic decorating techniques. They will take your decorated piece, fire it in the kiln, and a week later you can pick up your finished piece and take it home! Make a piece that is perfect as a homemade gift or as decor for your home. Each month, they’ll provide a ceramic project you will create and decorate with all the supplies. Each monthly class will be 90-120 minutes depending on the project. The cost is $20/person.
You will see examples of what the finished product will look like before you begin the class. Get details and register at www.scera.org.
The Art Haus in Salt Lake City believes that everyone has artistic talent and they are here to help you discover and develop yours. They have a beautiful space that inspires creativity and they have amazing instructors that encourage self-expression while helping you develop and refine your artistic skills. Art is a form of creative expression, a way of enriching the human experience and they strive to bring more art to the community. They welcome you to take classes and enjoy the benefits that art can bring into your life. Here are the classes they offer:
Children’s Wheel-Thrown Pottery Class
Children will learn the basics of wheel-thrown pottery, like how to center clay and make things like bowls, cups, and more! This class will also go over the basics of glazing and coloring clay. Make sure your kids wear clothes they don’t mind getting dirty because they will be having lots of fun with mud! At the end of each month, children will have a few finished products they can take home with them that are dishwasher and food safe.
Adult Wheel-Thrown Pottery Class
This class will focus mainly on the potter’s wheel. Whether you are a beginner, intermediate, or an experienced potter, they offer lessons and exercises for all skill levels. Classes are small so they can work with each person on an individual basis. Demos will be given during class by the instructor to show students step-by-step instructions on how to make pottery on the pottery wheel. Instruction on firing and glazing techniques will also be included in the class. Once skills are developed students are encouraged to create what they find compelling and teachers will assist with what the student requests to learn.
Information on class schedules and fees can be found at www.arthaus-slc.com.
Located in Spanish Fork, Utah, you can contact them at (801) 335-4990. Their website is www.maijo-studios.com.
The Elk Ridge Pottery Garage offers a variety of pottery classes to choose from. One of them will fit your needs:
This 90-minute class makes a great date night! Have some fun in the mud and learn how to create pottery on a wheel. This one-time demonstration and hands-on experience are for up to five people, ages 12 and up. Completing a pot takes several weeks so this class is just for fun.
Introduction to pottery
A four-hour course on the basics of pottery, split into three classes – Class #1 – (2 hrs.) creating pottery at the wheel, Class #2 – (1 hr.) trimming at the wheel, and Class #3 – (1 hr.) glazing your pieces.
This class includes everything you need. Class times are scheduled to accommodate your busy schedule. This course is for adults and teens 14 years or older.
New Beginners 11 Week Class Session
This class is in conjunction or part of the 10-week session and is required for new students. This class includes everything in the 10-week class plus (1) – 25 lb. bag of clay and the two-hour intro class.
Beginning students will start one week before the 10-week course. Limited to just four people, students will receive two hours of instruction and lots of help at the wheel before joining a 10-week class.
The first intro class may be scheduled at a different time than your regular 10 week class time
Ten Week Class Session
Up to 40 hours of studio time are offered in this session. All students will register for a weekly two-hour class where they will receive instruction, help, and demonstrations to improve their pottery skills.
There are no weekly time constraints on the 40 hours of studio time. You can come in during your normal class time and any additional open studio time that works for you. You can come as often or as little as you want until your 40 hours have been used, up to one month past the last day of the class.
Clay is not included in the standard 10-week session but is purchased as needed. There will be a maximum of six students per class. This class is for adults or teens 16 years or older.
Open studio time is available to students with experience on the wheel. Time is purchased with punch cards. Find more information at www.elkridgelocal.com.
As you can see, the number and variety of opportunities to learn how to express yourself in the world of pottery are almost unlimited. You can take an extended course and blossom under the tutelage of some of the best artists anywhere or you can spend a couple of hours in an introductory class and decide where you want to go with it. It is also not difficult to find a class convenient to your location. If you have never worked with clay on a pottery wheel, you are about to enter a whole new world of expression – enjoy.