Norman K Frater, Sculptor Nameplate


Sculpture Classes and Workshops

One sculpture class or workshop is offered each year at my private studio near Bend in Central Oregon. Classes are open to anybody with a desire to learn sculpting techniques using moist clay. Class/workshop sessions are three hours each. Classes consist of one session per day and two days per week. Workshops consist of two sessions per day and two or three days per week. Each venue totals about 13 sessions giving plenty of time for learning, for developing the subject, and for preparing the clay sculpture for firing. Each format breaks for three weeks for drying and firing pieces prior to applying a patina.

Current and Upcoming Sculpture Class and Workshop Offerings:

Open Studio Winter 2016
Sunday Afternoons, Winter Weather Permitting 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Private studio near Tumalo, OR
Open studio format, sculpting projects of your choice. Students must research their own subjects and bring reference pictures. Individual guidance and instruction as needed, help with visualizing project, recommended approach using clay, sculpting techniques, solving problems, etc.

Open studio cost $3 per hour, includes bisque firing and glaze/stain/cold patina materials. Clay is extra and available in class approx $11 per 25 lb bag. Charge approx $5 for glaze firing. Max 6 students.
Because of winter weather conditions, an email will be sent out on Saturdays if Sunday session will be cancelled. If snow conditions look bad, do not come.

Sculpting Topics

Students may choose from any of the following topics to suit their individual interests:

Sculpting the Head in Clay  

Students can learn the proportions and features of the human head and sculpt a life size head or bust in clay. The focus will be to learn features of a human head, not to create a likeness of an actual person (ie. portraiture).  Students are encouraged to collect and bring pictures showing heads from a variety of different angles (especially including side views) to use for reference.  A set of handouts is also provided illustrating the features and proportions of the head and giving additional reference views.

Sculpting the Torso in Clay   

Students may elect to isolate just the torso of the human figure. The torso is the trunk of the human body without head and limbs, but optionally can include the head.  In essence, the torso is an unfinished figure.  A maquette – a small preliminary model – will be made to explore the position and features of the torso prior to modeling. Students will learn the proportions and features of the human trunk and can sculpt a one-half life size torso in clay.  Prior experience in sculpting a full size head is very helpful in modeling the reduced size head for either the figure or torso.

Sculpting the Figure in Clay  

Students can sculpt a one-third life sized standing pose in order to learn the landmarks and proportions of the human figure. The standing figure is ideal for learning because proportions are so easily measured. The figure will be sculpted on a special armature stand, placed on a clay plinth for stability, and then dressed up with hair and clothing if desired. Special considerations for structural integrity of the piece and methods to create variety of textures will be demonstrated.  Handouts including measurements and illustrations from anatomy and photography books and a one-half life size skeleton will be used as references for this topic. 

Animals or other Sculpting Elective

Students who wish to work on animals or abstract or non-representational sculptures may sculpt their subject of interest. Students are responsible to research and bring their own reference pictures. 

Additional Information 

Instructor will provide individual guidance for students to achieve their desired results. Prior experience in hand building with moist clay is helpful but certainly not necessary. Students may purchase sculpture clay at class and are encouraged to bring some basic sculpting tools, available at local art stores or college book store. Cost of bisque firing (first firing) and patina materials are included in the registration fee. After students finish modeling, the sculptures are hollowed out to prepare them for firing. Completed sculptures are dried and fired by the instructor during a three-week break. Following the break, class sessions resume and a high-fired oxide stain or glaze (for additional firing cost) and/or a layered acrylic patina is applied to the ceramic sculpture as a work of art. Classes do not include fabrication of bases, but bases can be commissioned at extra cost.

Hire or Commission the Instructor

Norman is available for teaching sculpture workshops, sessions or demonstrations at schools or other venues. Contact the artist about a custom tailored class if you would be traveling from outside central Oregon. He can also be commissioned for portraiture in clay or bronze or any sculptural subject of your desire. 

Please contact the artist with any questions about upcoming sculpture classes or workshops.

    Norman K. Frater | Ceramic & Metal Sculptor

Norman Frater Sculptures

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