Pottery Tool Making with Alistair Whyte

Make your own specialised timber pottery tools

Book Now (https://claytalk.weteachme.com/l/fz6giUzr)


The tool can greatly assist in the potter’s making process, it is an extension of yourself and of utmost importance in the making of fine consistent ceramics.

In this 2-day workshop students will learn to make your own specialised pottery tools with Master Potter Alistair Whyte. You will be emboldened with the basic knowledge and skills to begin designing, making and using your own hand-made pottery tools out of wood - Hopefully leading to more creative, well made and individual ceramics.

Day 1 (May 2nd):

The first day will begin with a presentation by Alistair on his life and journey as a pottery along with the different kinds of handmade pottery tools in his studio and the correct way they are used in the making process.

This will be followed by discussion and demonstration of Alistair’s various pottery tools and methods used in constructing these tools out of timber. Alistair will delve into the design process, expansion of tool sizes to account for shrinkage, the types of timbers used and their varying purposes.

Discussion will be followed by a hands-on demonstration on the potter’s wheel of how the various tools are correctly used in practice.

Students will be asked to ruminate on the lessons of day 1 and bring along a design for a pottery tool of their choice drawn up to scale for making in day 2.

Day 2 (May 3rd):

This day will begin with a discussion on the various designs chosen by students, their intended purpose and advice on how to construct them.

Students will then begin making their chosen tools under assistance from Alistair – students will be using power tools in the making process and must be comfortable doing so and following correct OHS procedures.

Students will then have a chance to try out their tools on the Potter’s wheel under guidance and advice from Alistair.

Alistair Whyte:
I have been working as a potter for what seems a lifetime, and get great pleasure from it. My skills come from years spent studying and working in Japan learning fine porcelain techniques, though I make a diverse range of ceramics in stoneware earthenware raku and by pit firing. I also gain much satisfaction having people use my work for everyday life. For me, function and use is an important reason to make pots. My studio reflects my nature and the satisfaction I get from spending time there. I hope you will come and visit so that you can gain some insight into my world and the pots I make.

I work in porcelain because I love the material and the challenge it represents. I am pleased that more potters are accepting the challenge of porcelain in Australia. My training embodies both western and eastern influences, however, I put myself into the work. I work in a tranquil setting in country Victoria with mountainous surroundings that are well suited to making porcelain. I have been working over 25 years in my art and have acquired unique knowledge and experience. I believe strongly in the functional, and the enrichment ceramic art can bring.

Alistair will have a selection of his own handmade pottery tools for sale at the end of the workshop.

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What you will learn
  • How to design and make your own specialised pottery tools from wood
  • How to correctly use your individual tools on the potter's wheel
  • Learn about the variety of different pottery tools along with their purpose in the making process
What you will get
  • Your own pottery tool made from wood and instructions on how it is correctly used in the making process
  • An insightful overview of different pottery tools and how Alistair uses them in his practice

What to bring
  • Work/gardening gloves and safety glasses
  • A towel and apron for wheel throwing
  • Designs of your intended tool to make in day 2 drawn up to scale
What to wear

Casual / older clothes and covered or closed-in shoes

Appropriate for

Anyone interested in expanding their ceramic practice through the use of handmade pottery tools

Refund & Cancellation Policy

If you change your mind and want to cancel your course booking completely, you can either transfer your enrolment to a friend or we'll refund:

  • 100% if you cancel at least 4 weeks before the course starts, less a $20 administration fee.
  • 50% if you cancel 2 weeks before the course starts, less a $20 administration fee. 
  • No refund if you cancel:
    • less than 2 weeks before the course starts; or
    • the course has already started.

We'll give a full refund if we have someone on our waiting list who can take your spot immediately or if we cancel a course for our own reasons not mentioned below.

if for reasons outside of our control, such as severe weather conditions, a class must be cancelled we will do our best to accommodate you with a replacement class.

If you can’t attend a class during your course, unfortunately we don’t offer make up classes. We therefore encourage you to choose your courses and dates carefully.

Online Classes:
If technical issues on the part of the tutor disrupt our online stream for a significant amount of time and the class cannot be completed satisfactorily we will do our best to accommodate you with a make-up class or a refund will be offered if no make-up class can be agreed upon.

Technical issues on the part of the participant are not our responsibility.

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Terms & Conditions

Online Classes:

If booking our online classes you agree to being able to collect and drop-off your materials and/or finished pieces at the designated times and at these times only.

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