This is a beginner’s course for those wishing to discover more about stone carving and making sculpture. An action packed weekend which will cover all you need to know, including which stones are used for carving and the techniques to reduce the given rock to the desired form. No experience is needed, it is easier than you think and there is a method and stone to suit everyone. You just need enthusiasm and a willingness to give it a go.
On the first evening, there will be an introduction to the course and a tour of the sculpture courtyard. Health and safety will be covered. It is important to have a good work practice from the start. How you stand and hold the chisel/hammer is very important to be an efficient and productive carver.
Three projects will be set to give you the experience of two types of stone, their different qualities and techniques for carving.
You will be given a block of Maltese limestone 6 x 6 x 2 inches (still sold in imperial measurements) cut into two. This is a soft sedimentary rock with a fine grain.
First project – using one piece of the Maltese limestone, create a small sculpture. A variety of tools will be used to shape the stone. You will be sawing, chiseling, drilling, filing and texturing. This is a practice piece to experience all the ways of reducing and shaping the block. The tutor will demonstrate all the tools needed for this task.
Second project – using the second piece of Maltese limestone, carve a small relief of an oak leaf. You will learn how to transfer a design onto a block, enlarging by squares, roughing out to a level, shaping the design, undercutting, finishing and texturing.
Third project – direct carving. You will choose a small metamorphic soapstone rock with at least one natural surface. The soapstone has wonderful colour and markings and can be polished to a silky surface. How to smooth and polish will be shown. This is a free expressive project and it is up to you how to respond to the form of the stone. Finally it will be finished with oil and wax.
You will be taught by demonstrating carving techniques and processes and one-to-one tutorials. By the end of the course you will have gained skills and knowledge to embark on your own sculptural journey and have three examples of different ways of working to take away. The tutor will bring examples, imagery and books to inspire.
Written information will be given throughout the course.
- Types of stone suitable for carving and where to source them
- Tools and technique
- Tools and sundry suppliers
- Health and safety for the stone carver
- Book list for further study and enjoyment
Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above
Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.
6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).
8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.
Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.
From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).
Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.
Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.
Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.
(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)
Paula Haughney,sculptor, stone-carver, maker and teacher studied at Portsmouth Polytechnic and Eastern Illinois university obtaining a BA and MA in Fine Art Sculpture. Stone carving came later, once found, she realised this was her chosen medium. Now having over 30 years experience and many monumental sculptures completed she has taught at all levels, exhibits regularly and is included in public collections worldwide.
Our Foundation Degree specialising in Furniture is designed to give you well-rounded woodworking theory and craft skills to become a self-employed maker or craftsperson, to continue your studies in higher education or to find employment in the creative industry sector. Find out more