We caught up with LCC, BA (Hons) Design Management and Cultures student Viktorija Hazane to find out about her experience on the Ceramics for Beginners course that she is currently taking at Central Saint Martins on Saturday afternoons.
What is your name and where are you from?
My name is Viktorija and I originally come from Riga, Latvia. I lived in Helsinki, Finland for a few years before moving to London 5.5 years ago.
What is your occupation?
I’m currently in the middle of my studies at LCC, BA (Hons) Design Management and Cultures.
What course did you study and why did you choose it?
The course I’m attending is Ceramics for Beginners, Saturday course. I chose this course because as long as I can remember I have always been a crafty kid and would always experiment with any materials I could get a hold of in order to enhance my creativity. In the past I have done drawing, jewellery making and floristry and eventually studied at the Riga School of Art and Design on the Fashion Design programme. It was during my studies here that I was learning fine art, art history, graphic design, creating my own fashion designs and collections. Now I find that I enjoy experimenting by building things with more serious tools, like with my stapler gun, handsaw and electric drill in order to up-cycle furniture and create bespoke household items.
Surprisingly, ceramics is something that I never managed to get to try, which is why I was interested in joining this short course. Turns out ceramics could be in my blood! Apparently my mother had a passion for ceramics and even had her own kiln before I was born. When I was 5, I was walking by the beach with my mother when she spotted a natural clay spot, so we sat there making clay bird whistles which dried out in the summer sun. Up until now, that was my only experience of working with clay.
My other motivation for joining this course was my interest in preserving the environment living an earth-friendly lifestyle. The main ingredients of ceramics are the four elements of nature: water, earth, fire, air and the main tool is your own hands. It was a perfect match for me.
What are you enjoying most about your course?
So far I have learnt the basics of hand-building, which include pinching, coiling and slabbing and decorating, as well as using slips and under-glazes for the colouring. Last Saturday we worked on making a mould for our casting workshop this coming weekend. I created a plaster mould of a pineapple that I will be casting into as many planters as possible in the next few weeks. So far I have made quite a few tiles, an incense holder and now a mould. I love how everything that you learn on this course is tangible.
How has this course benefitted your career or personal development?
On a personal level, this course has been a dream come true. I find working with clay is therapeutic and good for my soul. A great way to spend a Saturday.
What would you say to someone who is thinking about taking a short course at Central Saint Martins?
If you have been wanting to try something new creatively but haven’t got around to it, definitely check CSM short courses. The tutors, the environment and the energy of making things with your hands are all an inspiration.
What do you believe is integral to the work of an artist, in any discipline?
I think that in any discipline it’s important to be passionate about creating and always put the art of creating before the desire for success and recognition. In that way, an artist will have time for expressing their art, instead of worrying and chasing their dreams in social media and self-doubt.
What 3 words best describe your short course experience at CSM?
Practical, Creative and Grounding
Feel inspired? Visit the Central Saint Martins Short Courses website for more information on all of our courses and book yours today! The next Ceramics for Beginners course will take place in March 2018.
Please note that current UAL students and alumni are entitled to 10% off of all* short courses. To redeem this discount, please contact the short course office so that we can assist you with your booking.
*This offer does not include Orientation, Full Time Portfolio Preparation and Study Abroad courses.