Ceramics By The Sea

Monday, February 19, 2018 - By: Sydney R, Allard ‘18; Photo by Peggy Elmes

 Ceramics at Brentwood is a popular choice for fine arts students. With such high demand, pottery classes are offered during each arts block, with Ms Elmes as the instructor. Many students choose pottery as a fine art because it has such a large appeal; in pottery you can learn, create, design, and keep. Any pieces that you create you are allowed to take home and do with them what you will. 

Starting with handbuilt pottery, the beginners this year learned to make candle lanterns just in time for Halloween, and after that, the beginners made mugs that looked so great you couldn’t tell whether they were handbuilt or thrown on a wheel. After those projects, the beginners moved on to learn how to throw on the wheel.

Each term the potters have a goal to reach, whether it be a certain design, or a theme. This term, the theme is “Crazy for You” based off of this year’s musical. Ms Elmes is a very helpful teacher, and with her two pottery Co-Captains Will H, Whittall ‘18 and Mark W, Ellis ‘18, they all work together to help each student create a work of art. Many excellent students even have their art displayed in the shows at the beginning and end of the year.

An excellent experience was offered to the pottery students recently, and that was to welcome a guest potter, Meira Mathison, who was very impressed by Brentwood’s state-of-the-art pottery studio and the abundance of tools and space. Meira Mathison is a Canadian potter who owns a studio here in BC called Dancerwood Pottery, and has owned and maintained that studio for over 30 years. Meira offers workshops around the world including Canada, Mexico, England, and the US. The students were so pleased to be able to see another professional potter and hear about ways to shape a personal style when making pottery.

In pottery the students don’t have to conform to a specific style, or shape: we are encouraged to make every piece of clay into our own unique piece of art. Each student takes advantage of the opportunity for freedom and uses it well. The time often flies by and student often stay longer than required in order to keep creating.

Ms Elmes is an exceptional potter who always makes the already bright learning space even brighter. Each student enrolled in pottery is happy to be where they are; pottery is a safe, fun, and exciting art to be in.

Sydney R, Allard ‘18

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