The IUS Ceramics studio is a community of people working to become better artists and better people. If you enrolled in a ceramics course, you are a member of that community and therefore, it is your responsibility to help maintain and support a positive working environment.
A group clay studio is much different from many other art studios. Nearly everything is shared – we all use the same kilns, the same kiln shelves, the same glazes and materials, the same wedging tables, even the clay itself is recycled between many people. Because of this, we are all collaborators – someone else may load your piece in the kiln, someone else probably made the glaze you applied to your piece, someone else might have made the clay you are using, and someone else might fire your work for you.
And this is a great thing actually – isn’t it inspiring knowing that you are a part of something much bigger than yourself?! It’s pretty cool! And it is something we will value and support because this community of people helps support each of us in our search to achieve our creative goals!
While the faculty will certainly help foster a supportive creative environment, it is ultimately the responsibility of the students to create and maintain a supportive work environment for the WHOLE group.
The culture of the ceramics studio is yours and it’s easy to take part in building and maintaining it.
Here’s what you can do:
- Be curious and enthusiastic about learning things! Not only for yourself, but for your classmates.
- Contribute to the dialogue! Whether you are in a formal critique or informal discussions in the studio, contribute by offering thoughtful perspectives and constructive criticism.
- Be an active learner and researcher! Seek out information that will help your work technically AND conceptually.
- Commit yourself to personal improvement! Always strive to make yourself a better person.
- Be proactive in soliciting feedback from others! You and your work will be better for it.