Course Profile

Goals of the Course

The purpose of this class is to prepare students for self‐directed advanced studio work beyond undergraduate classes, whether that is senior project, a personal studio career, a residency, or continued education in ceramics.

Students will work on developing technical skills (materials and processes appropriate to their concepts), aesthetic sensibilities (including the use of historic and contemporary references in ceramics and other arts, criticism, expression of personal concepts in works). This is intended to build on the basic information from prior handbuilding, throwing, vessel, and ceramic sculpture classes.

This semester’s focus will be on 3D Printing.

Who is it designed for?

Ceramics Majors, students with previous experience in ceramics at an advanced level and post baccalaureates.

Learning Objectives

Technical Goals:

Familiarity with:

  • firing gas and electric kilns
  • clay materials and clay bodies
  • mixing clays, slips, and glazes
  • simple glaze calculation
  • use of computer programs to perform more complicated glaze calculation
  • basic photography of work

Students will use clay bodies of their own choice. Exploration of surface options will identify materials and processes that further the ideas expressed in the work. Forming skills will be researched and developed as needed.

Artistic Goals:

Students will develop a basis for researching and evaluating the options in solving studio problems working in series to achieve growth in studio work

organization anytime management to generate a project and complete it by a specified date, i.e. senior show, grad school application, etc. Along with that, a understanding the personal, technical, and aesthetic demands of working as an artist finishing the semester with a body of related works that demonstrate personal direction and evolution of an idea 

Maker skills it develops

3d scanning and printing


Senior standing as ceramics major. students with previous experience in ceramics at an advanced level and post baccalaureates.

Skills, Tools and Technologies Used

3D printing and scanning

plaster mold making

hand building and wheel throwing techniques

glaze chemistry and practice

gas kiln and electric kiln firing

Key Examples and Prior Work

Key Resources

Ceramics Handbook, Charles McKee, optional

Example Assignment

Choose a natural or made object, 3d scan and manipulate the file, 3d print a model, make a plaster mold, slip cast or press mold clay and make multiples, arrange into a grouping as a sculpture. 

Lessons Learned

The right balance of direction and independent work is important in this class.