Guide to fabrication courses in Scotland: the workshops and classes where you can learn a making skill.
It is a New Year! There are a whole 365 days ahead of you to accomplish something new, learn a skill or improve on previous years endeavors.
With this fresh faced attitude in mind, we fully encourage you start making in 2016. Take the opportunity to learn a new skill, use a new material, figure out how to use that machine or develop your understanding of a particular process. From bronze casting to ceramics, jewellery to screen printing - what have you always wanted to try your hand at?
In Scotland there are a multitude of makers, companies and facilities with open doors, workshops and courses to teach both newcomers and experienced creatives alike. To inspire you, we've written a guide to where you can access fabrication courses and learn hand skills in Scotland.
Printmaking Courses in Scotland
This year DCA Print Studio are running both evening courses and workshops for their members and the wider public. Subjects include Screenprinting, Waterless-plate lithography, Wood Engraving, Etching, Bookbinding, Collagraphy and even an Introduction to Letterpress. Prices start from £30. The full list of 2016 courses at DCA is available here.
Further north, Highland Print Studio in Inverness have both evening and weekend classes on offer. Their screenprinting class is already fully booked, but there is still time to book onto wood relief printing, etching and lithography. Prices start from £100. More information about 2016 classes at Highland Print Studio is available here.
In Aberdeen, tutors Michael Waight and James Vass are running courses suitable for any skill level at Peacock Visual Arts. Techniques include Screenprinting, Linocut and Bookbinding. Prices from £75/£65 conc. Information about 2016 classes at Peacock Visual Arts is available here
For those in the central belt, both Glasgow Print Studio and Edinburgh Printmakers have frequent public courses, classes and workshops. Most of the classic printmaking techniques are covered such as Screenprinting, Collograph, Relief printing, Mezzoprint and Etching.
At Edinburgh Printmakers, prices start from £65 / £60 conc. You can find out about the courses on offer at Edinburgh Printmakers here
In Glasgow, courses tend to run for around 5 weeks, with prices starting at £155/ £145 conc. The list of 2016 courses at Glasgow Print Studios is available here.
Sculpture Courses in Scotland
The sculpture workshops of Scotland have an impressive range of techniques on offer in their 2016 courses and workshops. From public evening classes to development workshops for members and professional artists, the selection is inspiring.
At Glasgow Sculpture Studios, you will find a mix of public evening courses, taught by artist members of the studios. These tend to last 4 weeks, with prices starting at £145 (including materials). From creative metal work with Joseph Ingleby, ceramics with Kevin Andrew Morris, to Mouldmaking and Casting with James Rigler - we are having trouble deciding which of these we want to sign up for ourselves! The full list of 2016 courses at Glasgow Sculpture Studios is available here
In the east, Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop are running evening classes and day long workshops over 2016. Techniques include contemporary metalwork, clay sculpture, slipcasting, plaster carving, to wood construction. Our pick is the Introduction to Stone with Alex Lopez. Prices start at £85. More information on all of the courses running at Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop is available here.
If you are wanting to try your hand at bronze casting, Scottish Sculpture Workshop in Lumsden will be running their Spring Bronze Casting course in April. Led by Eden Jolley, the course is a 7-day introduction to casting techniques and processes. More information about the bronze casting course here.
Glass Courses in Scotland
Known for bringing in expert tutors from all over the world, Northlands Creative Glass in Lybster (the northern North-East) will be running both Skills Classes and Master Classes this year. From basic lampworking skills to using kilncast glass in nature, these courses are something special for artists, designers and anyone material minded. More information about Skills Classes at Northlands Creative Glass can be found here.
In Edinburgh, Ingrid Phillips, glass artist and technician at Edinbrugh College of Art, will be running a one-day Glass Blowing workshop on the 30th of January 2016. The day is aimed at beginners to the process that want to find out more about the world of glass. Prices are £175/person. For more information email Ingrid directly: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ceramics Courses in Scotland
When Make Works started back in 2012, we were always on the lookout for ceramics courses and found they were few and far between. Since then, we are delighted to find an increased interest in ceramic work, reflected by the growing number of workshops, courses and facilities on offer in Scotland.
In Glasgow, Glasgow Sculpture Studios have a number of ceramic mouldmaking workshops as part of their 2016 evening courses. For throwing and hand building, both Glasgow Ceramics Studio, Fireworks Studio and Fiona Byrne Sutton offer evening classes.
In Edinburgh, open access ceramics facility, Cyan Clayworks, are running courses and classes throughout the year. Tecniques such as Throwing, Hand-Building, Press Moulds and Surface Decoration are available, with different courses for beginners, intermediate potters and developed artists. Prices start at £70. The full list of ceramics courses at Cyan Clayworks can be viewed here.
You can also take pottery classes at the Edinburgh Design School. Building up from a five week taster, to a fifteen week course working towards the dedicated Scottish Qualification Authority pottery certificate. Prices start at £140.
If you are interested in how to get your patterns and illustrations onto ceramics, take a look at the ceramics painting workshops at Hill Street Design House. Run by designer El-Aich, the workshop is priced at only £20!
Digital Fabrication Courses in Scotland
Digital Fabrication means manufacturing using equipment that uses a digital file to cut, print or form an object. For example, laser cutters, CNC Machines, digital fabric printers or 3D printers. You can generally get access to these machines at a local fablab, hacklab or makerspace.
The first of these set up in Scotland was MAKLab, who will be running a variety of workshops over 2016. From electonics, using Rhino and introductions to their core machines. These are available at their sites in Glasgow and Dumfries.
In Edinburgh, Edinburgh Laser Studio run a weekend long 'Introduction to laser cutting course' every few months. Prices start at £195.
At the DCA in Dundee, there are a number of workshops about how to use laser cutting for printmaking and illustration. You can see the full list of courses at DCA in 2016 here.
Textiles Courses in Scotland
There are so many techniques when it comes to textiles, that it is difficult to round up of all the classes or courses in Scotland! Here are a snapshot of what you can try.
In Glasgow, learning how to screenprint is all the range for 2016. Starting with Laura Spring, a Glasgow-based textiles designer, who offers one-day print classes designed to cover all you need to know to get you started with screenprinting onto textiles. Her next tote bag printing class is on the 27th of January at Grey-Wolf Studios, and costs £85 for the day. You can find out more about Laura Spring's workshops here.
For budding project runway stars, then upping your sewing skills is essential. There are a few sewing schools across Scotland, from Red Thread Studio in Edinburgh, The Stitchery in Glasgow and Sew Confident (across Scotland). Iona Barker from MAKLab textiles, is also taking her pop up sewing class Say it Ain't Sew to Dundee, Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dumfries.
If weaving is your thing, then James from Pick One Weave will be running frequent weekend weaving courses from his studio in Coburg House, Edinburgh. Prices start from £160.
Jewellery Courses in Scotland
In Glasgow, Vanilla Ink run a jewellery workshop, providing workspace for jewellery makers. They run professional development workshops for jewellers and silversmiths, as well as jewellery making courses for both beginners and intermediate jewellers. The full list of Vanilla Ink classes in 2016 is available here.
Over 2016, jewellers Kate Pickering and Katie Lees will be continuing to run Carve Workshops, a wax carving pop up workshop, turning wax to silver in restaurants and cafes across Scotland.
In the southside of the city, Makers Workshop run 'Make a Ring' workshops, and basic jewellery making courses.
In Edinburgh, Silverhub Studios provide short courses in jewellery making – including beginners in metal jewellery design. They also offer a 'make your own wedding band' workshops. The full list of workshops and classes at Silverhub can be viewed here.
There are also a number of evening classes and weekend courses at Precious Metals Workshop, covering techniques from stone setting, polishing, enamel and casting.