The ten-month Professional Potter advanced diploma is designed to give you the skills to establish your own studio or workshop-based business and make a living as a practicing professional potter. The program allows you to progressively develop your design and production skills, while integrating the technical knowledge of clays, glazes and firing processes. You will also learn how to analyze and evaluate your design and production choices in order to optimize productivity, produce work of quality and character and develop a marketing plan for the work.
During the first term, you will be immersed in studio practice. A series of short, intensive courses allow you to progressively master fundamental to advanced elements. Courses include Throwing for Production, Design and Practice, Clay Technology, Surface Enrichment techniques, Kilns and Firing technology, Mold Making and Hand-building Techniques for Production. In the first term, you will focus on technical skills, best practices, and will define your production preferences and business direction.
In the second term, you will continue to develop your design and technical skills throughout the creative process and you will begin producing work aimed for the market and portfolio development. Business courses provide you with a detailed range of business skills specific to planning, maintaining, and marketing a pottery business. You will learn market research, developing a business plan, legal issues, bookkeeping and accounting procedures and marketing strategy applicable to your pottery business. A digital media course will give you enough digital photography and computer skills to develop, manage and maintain your own website.
In FIN-348 Kilns and Firing technology IV, a highlight of the second term, you will spend three days on Denman Island, BC, firing a Tozan-style Anagama wood-fired kiln, one of only three in existence in North America.
Before completing the program, you will complete a mandatory two-month practicum with two options:
An approved internship with a practicing professional potter, which will be structured as either volunteer or paid and give you invaluable experience.
Or, apply for a two-month residency at the Medalta International Residency Program in Medicine Hat, Alberta. If you choose this option, you will have the opportunity to begin developing your work and testing out markets. Residency fees apply.