Instructor: Amelia Butcher (Click for Bio)

Immerse yourself in an exciting ceramic workshop exploring a variety of surface decoration techniques before glazing. Expand on forms you are comfortable with, including wheel-thrown, coil, and other hand-built forms. Learn how to craft your own ceramic watercolours, pastels, pencils, and DIY slip transfers. Try wax inlay drawings and other techniques. Investigate the interaction between 2D designs and 3D forms, explore strategies for composition, and unleash your creativity as we blend drawing and clay work.

Day one kicks off with a dynamic drawing exercise before expanding on forms you are comfortable with, including coil-building,  wheel-thrown and hand-built forms.  Day two is all about refining your what you created on day one and learning the magic of DIY slip transfers and wax inlay drawings. By day three, you’ll be creating your ceramic pigments decorating your bisqued pots using your homemade pigments, and experimenting with glazes to add depth and narrative. Day four learn more about the interaction between different materials with clay as well as using yesterday’s composition exercises to decorate our pieces. On day five, we add the finishing touches, explore selective glazing, and prepare your creations for their final firing. If time allows we’ll wrap up with a collaborative drawing exercise, celebrating your newfound skills and creativity.

Students should bring their own tools, an apron, and cone 5/6 clay. Appropriate clay bodies are M340, M370, M390, P300, or Coffee. Clay can be purchased at VCAC on the first day of class.

Note: All participants must be 17 year or older. 

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Instructor: Karen Palmer (Click for Bio)

Join us for an inspiring five-day journey into the art of storytelling through ceramics. Learn to create captivating images on clay using sculptural techniques and transform them into compelling 3D artworks. Manipulate clay slabs into tiles and boxes, using texture, underglazing, staining and more to bring your narrative visions to life.

Throughout the workshop, you’ll explore various surface decoration techniques, including the use of underglazes, staining, and more, to add depth and vibrancy to your pieces. Perfect for artists of all levels, this workshop will equip you with the skills to weave stories into your ceramic creations. Unleash your creativity and let your ceramics tell a tale!

Students should bring an apron, a bag of M340 clay, 9×12 pad of paper, a pencil, and 1 large sheet of poster board. Clay can be purchased at VCAC on the first day of class. All other materials and tools required are included.

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Instructor: Wendy Cail (Click for Bio)

Dive into the vibrant world of natural dyes in this dynamic course, where each day blends fascinating theory with exciting hands-on practice. Unlock the secrets of natural dyeing as you learn the terminology, equipment, scouring, mordanting, and fiber types. Embark on ethical foraging adventures, uncover plant-based dye wonders, and delve into intriguing historical trivia. Experience the thrill of bundle dyeing, creating natural dye “paint,” experimenting with mordant paste printing, and the ancient art of tataki zome. Cap off your journey with the magical “dirty pot” dyeing technique. Get ready to transform raw materials into stunning works of art!

Students should bring rubber gloves, apron or work shirt, bags to transport dyed materials, garden clippers, mask (optional) notebook & pen, lots of enthusiasm. Other possible items will be discussed on first day (plants from you own garden etc.)  

Note: All participants must be 17 year or older. 

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Instructor: Patricia Doyle (Click for Bio)

Discover innovative methods and techniques to elevate your glasswork to new heights. Experience the magic of using torches to craft intricate, organic shapes in glass, impossible to cut by hand. Delve into the realm of powders, metals, and mica to broaden your artistic horizons with glass. We will study firing schedules and techniques to gain a deeper insight into the fusing process. Use a ring saw to fashion one-of-a-kind shapes and learn how to successfully drill precise holes in glass. If there is interest, we’ll venture into vitrigraph firing, unlocking the potential for truly unique designs.

Students will purchase there own glass depending on the projects they choose. Frits, powders, and some other specialty items are included in the class price. Please wear closed toes shoes. 

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Instructor: Marlene Lowden (Click for Bio)

An in-depth five-day workshop designed to help participants explore the expressive possibilities of mark-making in abstract art. Through engaging activities and insightful discussions, attendees will immerse themselves in color theory, composition, and the use of design elements to cultivate their unique artistic voice. The workshop emphasizes mark-making techniques with acrylic paint, though participants are welcome to use oils during free painting sessions. Key topics include color theory, composition, and the application of the seven elements and principles of design in abstract art.

Students should bring: a sketchbook: mixed media  8.5” x 11” or larger, newsprint paper pad, 1-2 canvases (at least 24” on one side), acrylic paint: black, cyan blue, primary yellow, naphthol red medium, primary magenta, white (Amsterdam brand recommended), palette knife (approx. 1.5” wide at the base), 3 brushes: 1 round (size 6 or 8), 1 flat (size 8 or 12), 1 hardware store brush (1” to 2”), markers, crayons, or pencil crayons, pencil, thin black marker (e.g., Posca), green painters tape, rags, palette (butcher tray or paper plates), glue stick, scissors, painting clothes and shoes.

Optional: Favourite painting tools, gloves, water bottle

Instructor: Gale Woodhouse (Click for Bio)

Work towards building an abstract sculptural form of your own design following a series of preliminary small scale explorations investigating the infinite textural qualities of this magnificent medium. Learn the essentials of building clay forms, ceramic construction techniques, traditional modeling, structural design, and mark-making.

Whether you’re a hand-builder or looking to incorporate throwing skills, this workshop has something for everyone. Gain a strong foundation in three-dimensional form building and explore gesture and expression to bring your sculptures to life. By the end, you’ll create a unique abstract sculptural form of your own design. Join us and unleash your inner artist!

Students should bring a box of cone 5/6 grogged clay (sculpture mix, MSCULP, WSO, or similar) clay tools, and an apron. Clay can be purchased at VCAC on the first day of class. All other required materials will be supplied.

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Hours of Operation

Monday to Thursday

9:00am to 9:00pm

Fridays & Saturdays

9:00am to 5:00pm


12:00pm to 4:00pm

Please note, the Centre is closed on some statutory holidays.