Thanks to a $1,200 City of Surrey cultural grant, Semiahmoo Potters Society members recently had an opportunity to share their crafting skills with the First Peninsula Brownies.
In sculpting and painting sessions earlier this month at Mount Olive Lutheran Church Hall, members of the society helped the Brownies create and decorate unique masks – partly inspired by a mask-making workshop they had themselves taken with B.C. potter Bob Kingsmill at his Granville Island Studio.
Potter Diane Petersen said that working with the children – which society members have done before – illustrates the ongoing community involvement of the organization, which will display its own wares at its annual Christmas sale at Ocean Park Community Hall this weekend – Saturday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Included are new slab art and masks, also inspired by Kingsmill’s workshop.
“We’re excited about a lot of the new things we’re doing,” Petersen said, adding the sale offers a lot of unique Christmas gift options for buyers.
“A lot of us have been burning the midnight oil for this one.”
Petersen said the grant money from the city enabled the not-for-profit society to buy tools and materials in bulk for the project with the Brownies, noting that many members participated enthusiastically.
“Some prepared the clay into workable squares, while others visited to demonstrate and help the girls make the masks; firing committee potters bisque-fired the greenware, and others returned the bisqued masks to the Brownies and helped them paint their masterpieces.”
Also on hand was noted local potter Don Hutchinson – who shares his Granville Island studio with Kingsmill, and who currently hosts the society’s monthly activities at his South Surrey studio.
“Don had fun conversing with the little artists, delighted by the far-reaching effects of Bob’s workshop,” Petersen said.
“Many of the children had never played with clay before – their excitement with ceramics was magical.”