During my high school ceramics class final, I had a pottery-savvy friend sneak into our studio time and throw a vase for me because I had tried (and failed) for two days.
Since then, I’ve wanted to try my hand at pottery again—no cheating included. So I was thrilled when my Christmas gift this year was a 10-week pottery class at Studio 550 in Manchester.
If you’re looking for a laid back, fun and informative place to learn pottery, Studio 550 is your place. They cater to artists, novices and “people who have not made ‘art’ since they were kids.”
I enrolled in the adult beginning wheel throwing class, but there are a multitude of classes to choose from—from dance to ceramics to paper arts. They even hold “date night classes” where you and a spouse/friend/coworker can get an hour and a half crash course in wheel throwing.
My class, which ran on Mondays from 6-9, also included 20 pounds of clay, as well as studio time outside of the scheduled class. Over 10 weeks, I learned basic wheel techniques, how the pottery process worked, how to clean old, dried clay from my shoes and why you should always thoroughly wash clay from your hands before making a sandwich after class.
The instructors at Studio 550 have a vast variety of experience, so no matter who is hanging around the studio, there’s a wealth of knowledge at your disposal. Aside from techniques, you also learn the stages of clay in pottery making, general history, and about reputable artists both locally and internationally.
At the beginning, I knew nothing about pottery and was a fairly terrible potter. After 10 weeks, I now know a little about pottery and am only decently terrible. Regardless, I had a fantastic time, and would recommend Studio 550 for anyone, of any skill level, who is interested in pottery.