Expressive Clay Sculpture

July 22 - July 26


Sold Out

This is a 5-day workshop. All classes run 9 – 4 pm each day with lunch included from 12 – 1 pm.

Expressive Clay Sculpture

Expressive Clay Sculpture

Clay is an ideal material to create work of the heart. It is both elemental and versatile. It also challenges, entertains, frustrates and presents us with endless possibilities for relaying the maker’s message. Clay rewards the artist who takes time to understand what it can do.

There is a thrill when a lump of mud that the artist has been manipulating begins to “talk” back; the look in an eye, the tilt of a head, a gesture that resonates. This is when clay comes alive. This is when magic is made.

In this Expressive Clay workshop we will seek to understand the material in a way that frees up the creative flow. Participants will explore the benefits of both solid and hollow methods of construction without an armature and how to prepare pieces for the kiln. With the use of simple hand tools and an emphasis on understanding form, we will learn how to create expressive figurative sculptures.

Whether the subject is human or animal, an overview of relevant anatomy will guide us in understanding how subtle adjustments to gestures and facial expressions allow us to convey relatable, poetic messages.

The workshop will include an overview of layered finishing techniques that add subtlety and depth to the sculptures. This will include both traditional fired surface treatments and “cold” finishes.

CLAY SUGGESTION:  Plainsman M332G burns a warm red up to cone 5, shifts quickly to brown by cone 6, and holds this color through cone 7. By cone 8 it takes on a slight greenish color and begins to fail at cone 9. At cone 6, M332G is quite vitrified compared to some other sculptural bodies. This means that overhangs and exaggerated forms will tend to warp or sag during firing at this temperature. To achieve the red color and provide resistance to warping, it is recommended you fire to cone 5 or lower.


  • Student Supply List: (Click HERE): Students are responsible for bringing the supplies listed.
  • Course Level: Intermediate
  • Course Prerequisites: Familiarity with clay and an interest in sculptural forms is important. Experience drawing or sculpting the figure is an asset.

Price: $855

This price includes: tuition, daily lunch, material fees (if required), any applicable taxes and is listed in Canadian Dollars.


Diane Black began her artistic training in the field of Illustration so the idea of telling visual stories is deeply engrained. Her expressive clay sculptures often use humour or absurdity to create a point of connection, a way of dropping defences so that poignant observations can be made in a revealing but unthreatening way. The figurative sculptures are an exploration of life through expressive, unguarded faces and gestures; mostly amusing, sometimes dark, always informed by careful observations of real life.

Click here to read more about DIANE BLACK

Out of stock

Join the waitlist to be emailed when this product becomes available