Class 1.
Handbuilding Stylized Birds

Part 1

As of 2/17/2022, this class is sold out. If you are interested in taking the class later in the year, please signup for the waitlist.

WHEN: Saturday, March 26th, 1:00 – 3:30 pm Eastern Standard Time

COST: $125 

SKILL LEVEL: A basic understanding of ceramics is necessary.

15 spaces available

Sign Up by March 24th

I love everything about birds from their song to their beautiful silhouette. Join me for a creative and informative “hands-on” afternoon. I will demonstrate how I make my stylistic sculpted birds using a combination of the pinch, slab and coil methods. “Hands-on” time follows every demonstration as we explore the look and feel of birds while creating them in clay. 


Participants will receive video links prior to the class which demonstrate how I prepare slabs and remove the canvas texture, a brief presentation about birds and their movements, thoughts about design and other preparations for the class.

  • Participants will finish their piece(s) on their own time.
  • This 2 ½ hour class has a 15 minute window before and after class for questions and answers. The post class Q & A can be extended if needed to address additional questions.
  • Participants must supply their own clay, handbuilding tools and other supplies needed for the class.


Out of stock

SKU CLASS 1. Handbuilding Stylized Birds - Part 1 - Saturday, March 26th Category Tag


Class Cost: $125

Class Date: Saturday, March 26th

Class Time: 1:00-3:30 Eastern Standard Time

Class Spaces Available: 15

Sign Up by: March 24th

Skill Level: Basic knowledge of ceramics is helpful.

What you’ll get in your digital class kit:

  • Technique sheet with instructions
  • Bird reference sheet 
  • Wing template

Video and Live Demonstrations Include:

  • Making a texture free slab using a rolling pin and slab roller
  • Creating a closed form using equally sized pinch pots
  • Paddling the closed form to create different shapes
  • Creating a bird head using the pinch and pulling handle method
  • Creating slab wings and base using a template
  • Options for applying the head, wings and base to the closed form to create a variety of bird movements
  • Creating sculptural bird eyes
  • Creating soft sculptural lines with a wooden rib
  • Relief carving of leather hard birds

What participants need to have for class:

  • Clay and corresponding slip to join the clay together
  • Needle tool
  • Kemper tool K23 or B3 (You’ll use this if you want to make sculptural bird eyes.)
  • Scoring tool of your choice (for slipping and scoring)
  • Wooden Paddle
  • Ruler
  • Saran Wrap
  • Water
  • Ribs (A wooden rib is my favorite but plastic and metal work too.)
  • Pencil & Paper for notes or drawings for reference
  • Photos of birds for reference
  • Scissors or Xacto knife to cut out wing pattern
  • Spray bottle
  • Sponge
  • Texture tools or stamps (if you want texture on your pieces)
  • Favorite handbuilding tools
  • Manilla folder or cover stock to cut out your wing template
  • Fan (This is to help dry out your bird a little so we can try some relief carving during class. Or, you can choose to watch the relief carving demonstration and allow your bird to get to the leatherhard stage naturally and try the relief carving after class.)

What Participants Need To Consider Regarding Clay Choice

*Participants will use their preferred clay. 

Think about how you want to finish your birds. This will help you choose the clay you want to use to create your pieces. 

Questions to ask yourself:

  • Do you plan to paint it with underglazes? (A no-grog red or white earthenware or porcelain clay may work best as you’ll want a smooth surface to paint on.)
  • Will you want to carve it once it reaches the larger hard stage? (Grog may or may not be an issue depending on your carving style.)
  • Will you finish it with oxides and translucent glazes to accentuate any textures you press into the piece during construction? (Any clay body should work)


  1. Watch the pre-recorded videos

DO NOT do the following steps more than 1 day prior to class. (We don’t want the clay to get dried out.)

When making your slab:

  1. Roll out your slab and remove the canvas texture.
  2. Cover your slab with plastic. The plastic should be in direct contact with your slab on the top and bottom.

When preparing the clay for your pinch pots:

  1. Roll out two clay balls that are roughly the same size as a tangerine. (approximately 2” in diameter)
  2. Cover your clay balls with plastic.
  3. Trace your wing template onto a manilla file folder and cut it out with scissors or Xacto knife. 

Once you’ve completed these steps, you will be ready for class!

Working with clay is easier with shortly trimmed fingernails.

Class Cost: $125

Class Date: Saturday, March 26th

Class Time: 1:00-3:30 Eastern Standard Time

Class Spaces Available: 15