ClayWays Pottery Studio & Gallery
5442 Burnet Road
Austin, TX 78756
Students will learn basic wheel skills: centering, opening, pulling, shaping, trimming and finishing, as well as glazing. Class will include supplies, glazing, and firing.
From owner Kit Adams:
“I was a secondary education major at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse, when I made the choice to take drawing for my art requirement. The problem was that Drawing 101 was full and I had to choose another studio art class. I decided to try ceramics, (although, I wasn’t so sure about how messy working in clay could be), and the rest is history. By the end of my first ceramics class I breathlessly and passionately stated to my instructor, Len Stach, I was working in clay for the rest of my life! Gentle, kind man that he was, he didn’t laugh at my declaration-Len, thank you. I graduated in 1978 from UW-L and started the graduate Ceramics program at Northern Illinois University. I completed my Masters in Ceramics at NIU and having never been keen about winter in the Midwest, I decided to move to Austin, Texas.
My Dad had been self-employed and he loved what he did. However, I remember him telling me when I was around 14 years old, that he was an entremanure not entrepreneur, because being self-employed involved a lot of poop! Dad was right. Selling pots is not an easy way to make a living, but I thought I was doing what I loved. I realized early on that production pottery was not as much fun without all of the other graduate students to hang out with. Let’s just say I wasn’t a quick study. I struggled for years making and selling my pottery and absolutely hated working alone…
I dreamed of opening up a large teaching facility of my own, and annually updated my business plan for it. In 1996 I had the opportunity to open ClayWays Pottery Studio & Gallery. I was essentially recreating graduate school, the happiest time in my life-lots of people living and breathing pottery. It was the right time, I found the right place and all of the right people came together to make it happen and words can’t express how grateful I am to KT Thompson, Pam Neill, Tom Scott, Denise Kavanagh, Vernon and Lois McKean, Cissie Williams, and Sara Lyford.
After thirty one years as a potter and twenty one as a wheel teacher, the thing that brings me the most joy is being a part of the ClayWays community. Birth and death, weddings and divorces, good pots and bad, we share it all at ClayWays. When I opened ClayWays, creating a community was not in the business plan, it just happened. It’s this exceptional bonus. I liken it to winning the lottery.
Today, I make pots for the moment of connection and exchange, when someone picks up one of my pots and needs to take it home. My pots become a “must have” for that person or for someone they care about. I teach pottery on the wheel for those moments of connection and exchange as well. When one of my students finally makes that first pot they’re proud of, it just doesn’t get any better than that.
I make pots because I like to; I teach pottery because I love to. Despite the poop, I’m forever grateful to be an entremanure, like my Dad.”
Cost: $260 per 8-week session, plus supplies