Ojai Studio Artists Mentor Local Art Students

The Ojai Studio Artists hosted two workshops this summer to mentor local art students. Larry Carnes, a ceramic sculptor and potter, is mentoring Dante Dikeman, a sophomore, and Jay Inman, a junior at Nordoff High School. Paper artist Gail Hercher just completed a six-week workshop with Claire Woolson, who will be a senior at Nordoff this coming year.  An exhibit of handmade books made by Woolson and Hercher is currently on display at the Ojai Art Center.

Larry Carnes tailored his ceramics workshop to what Dikeman and Inman most wanted to learn: how a ceramics studio is run. The two boys are getting an in-depth course in the day-to-day workings of a ceramics workshop. They’ve also learned how to make wheel-thrown work for sculpture,  how glazes are made and the operation of a glaze kiln. As Carnes’ explains, “They’re  learning all the menial stuff and what goes into running an artist’s studio.”

Gail Hercher’s Hand Bookbinding class with Woolson included a different kind of book construction each week, including pamphlets, Japanese stab bindings, hardcover with bookcloth, longstitch, accordion and portfolio bookbinding. “Claire made beautiful books,” Hercher asserts.

“Hand Bookbinding is a very useful skill to have,” Hercher explains. “Over the years, I have made guest books, special journals, notebooks and diaries, and large format books as art.  On one occasion I created a book form that opened to poster sized that was taken to Europe for a presentation at a magic convention.  So it can be very creative! “

The exhibit of Woolson’s and Hercher’s books at the Art Center will be on display until September 1.

Claire Woolson

Claire Woolson


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