20 December 2011

An Online Writing Course Tuned to Ceramics

Ever thought you would like to write articles for ceramic magazines or just be more confident writing proposals for exhibitions etc?

Potter/Teacher/Writer, Owen Rye is proposing to run such a course, online:
(click on his name to view his website)

The Writing Workshop.  
The tutor for this workshop is Owen Rye, well known in Australian ceramics both for his woodfired ceramics and for his writing. He has published three books, the most recent on woodfiring in Australia, and many articles in ceramics magazines in Australia, USA, England, Germany, Ireland, China and New Zealand.
He originally learned the ‘academic style’ of writing to publish archaeology research, but gradually has moved through a less formal stage to a more personal style and now enjoys story telling. As a result of these changes he can advise about a variety of writing styles.
Why would you do this workshop?
The main aim of the workshop is to maintain your personal style, but develop your writing for maximum clarity and readability, rather than to try to move you towards an artificial style. Writing is personal and the workshop respects that. The most basic belief expressed in this workshop is that if your writing is not interesting and readable nobody will read it.
 A professional career in ceramics requires skill in making and firing ceramics, and in visualising new work. In addition it is essential that you are ‘out there’- that people know about your work and your practice. The most important key to this publicity is the ability to write, to be able to contribute to online media such as Twitter, Facebook, blogs, and discussion groups, as well as newspapers and magazines. Fully establishing your public profile also involves public speaking, at conferences and other events such as exhibition openings, and writing skills allow you to develop a talk that will present your ideas and your attitudes professionally.
Writing is important for developing your career in the arts, whether it involves writing about your work or the work of others. If you have an exhibition maybe 500 people will see it; if you write for a magazine the readership is likely to be in the tens of thousands. If you write regularly your name will become familiar and a broad audience will take an interest in you and your work.
Of course if you are wealthy you could employ a publicist – but who can? You could pay for advertising – but that is also expensive. You need to find ways to publicise your work that are practical, useful and affordable- and writing skills are an essential part of the communication necessary to achieve those goals.
Good writing is an artform that calls on technical skills as well as insight into what you see around you.  Improved writing skills enhance your contribution by making what you have to say more readable, more interesting and more understandable.  At the end of this workshop you will be expressing yourself more powerfully through the medium of words.
Your level of development in writing can be at any stage. Beginners will be welcomed as much as more experienced writers looking at finer details for improvement. So if you are inexperienced do not let that stop you from doing this workshop– everyone started somewhere.

You will need a computer, and need to be using email. In addition internet access and a word program are necessary.  A digital camera is optional; you may wish to add some images to your written work. A printer is also optional, and can be used to keep a paper record of the workshop.All communications will be online, so you will work from home with no need to travel anywhere.
To get maximum value from the workshop, you should be able to set aside a minimum of about five hours a week. Some of this time is for your writing, some for keeping up with what others in the workshop are doing and with comments on their work. You may also spend some time reading – you cannot write well if you do not read often.

If you are interested contact Owen directly via his email: ryeowen@gmail.com

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