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A Week of Clay and Mountain Cool

A Week of Clay and Mountain Cool – I just returned from a week of making clay sculpture for totems at The Bascom in Highlands, NC. It was a great week! Learned a lot and enjoyed the 15 degrees cooler temperature (than New Bern) during the day. The teacher was clay artist Barry Gregg .

I’ve been working on some big – non-figurative totems but am anxious to do some with animals – I couldn’t think of a better way to get started down that path than to take a couple workshops. This was the first of two I’m doing this summer.

Barry’s work is very colorful and whimsical, he has quite a wit and was a great teacher.

Some photos of his demonstrations.

Here are some of MY pieces. Of course they need to be dried, the burrs cleaned off, fired, glazed and fired again before they are finished. I’ll post them again when all that is done!


I didn’t get out much to see the scenery due to a kidney stone I had just before going and it wasn’t comfortable to walk but I have a feeling this isn’t the last workshop I’ll be taking at The Bascom. It was a very low key and friendly atmosphere.

IMG_9213In addition to learning sculpture techniques from Barry I also observed a few other things. It would be great to spend the summers in the mountains but I would not want to be there in the winter (been there done that). The next town Cashiers is pronounced CASH-ers, not CASH-ears! There are a LOT of bears up there!
My motto is spelled out pretty well with this bumper sticker.

I don’t have time to glaze and fire the pieces right now but will post the photos when I do! Thanks for reading.

6 thoughts on “A Week of Clay and Mountain Cool

  1. Jan, I love your new figures, can’t wait to se the finished product! You are so talented!

    1. Thank you Karen! I just published photos of the 2nd clay workshop which was quite different. Then went to Michigan for a month. Can’t wait to have time to do some more sculpture, right now I’m trying to get caught up on other special orders (behind from all that darned traveling). I’ve got lots of ideas!

  2. Looks like a ton of fun.

  3. How fun. I too, took his workshop at The Bascom. I can’t wait to see your finished work.

  4. Beautiful area of the mountains, we spent Mother’s Day weekend in Cashiers. Learnt I have been saying it wrong all these years. So glad you were able to have such a great workshop looking forward to seeing more of these pieces. Take care Flossie

    1. I know about the pronunciation, our teacher was corrected and he said “well then you should take the i out of it!” I’m excited about doing more pieces, but have to get through all my travels. I kind of over booked trips this year but am enjoying it. You know what its like to try to figure out your life after such a loss, then to sell the business on top of it. I have lots of ideas for sculpture, especially after the 2nd workshop. She concentrated on telling a story, which got me thinking about a lot of them!

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