FAQ

1. How can I join the Guild and what are the benefits?

Information on how to join the Guild can be found here.

 

Annual membership fees are:

  • Single membership -  $23.00
  • Senior -  $12.00
  • Student (Full Time) $12.00

Membership benefits include:

  • Monthly meetings from September to April with guest speakers
  • Monthly newsletters
  • Spring and Fall Sales provide a marketing venue for members work
  • Access to extensive Guild Library of books, videos, dvds, magazines and slides.
  • Guild subsidized workshops twice a year

Biennial juried exhibition of members work is open to all members and presents the talent and diversity of our guild.

2. Where are you located?

The Guild does not have a storefront location.

Meetings are held from September to April in the Carnegie Gallery, 10 King St. in Dundas, Ontario,
Canada. For a schedule of meetings see Meetings.
The Guild can be also be reached by email at info@hamiltonpotters.ca. Our mailing address is:

Potters’ Guild of Hamilton and Region
Box 63068

102 Plaza Drive
Dundas ON L9H 6Y3

3. Do you offer classes?

We do not have the facilities to offer classes.

Classes are offered in the region at the Dundas Valley School of Art and the Burlington Art Centre. Go to our LINKS page for suggestions on where to find pottery classes.

4. When is the next sale?

Our sales are held annually in May and November. Please see events for specific dates, location and times.

5. What are the requirements for participating in the sale?

You must be a member of the guild for 2 years to participate in the sales. All work that is for sale has to meet specific standards which are outlined in our Sale Standards document

6. What do I do if I have a problem with a piece of pottery I bought at the sale?

Please email the Guild and the inquiry will be routed to the appropriate Supervisor, who will be in touch.

7. Do you have a collection and where can I see it?

The Potters’ Guild of Hamilton and Region Permanent and Special Collections consists of works in clay by past and present members of the Guild. The Collections are installed throughout the public areas of the Juravinski Cancer
Centre, 699 Concession Street Hamilton L8V 5C2. Hours Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. See contact for details.

8. What events does the Guild host?

The Guild holds sales in May and November. Other events are planned throughout the year including workshops and exhibitions. See our Events page  for details.

9. How do I find a member of the Guild?

Many of our members have their own websites. See our Members page  for more information.

10. What is the difference between pottery and ceramics?

This is somewhat confusing we know. Pottery is pottery, and ceramics is a word that encompasses ‘all things clay’. However if you asked us if you could paint pottery, we would send you to a studio that sold ceramics. If you wanted to apply to college to learn ‘all things clay’ you would look up Ceramics in the college directory. This Guild however, represents artists at our shows who make clay items from scratch. You will not find work made using commercial moulds at an HPG show. Further, when you hear that a car, or industrial part has a ceramic part, that does not mean there is a mug in there. Clear as mud – we know.

11. Is all pottery made of the same clay and fired in the same way?

No. There are many different types of clays and firing methods that potters use to get a desired look.

What is stoneware?

Stoneware is a white, gray or brown high-fired, usually non-porous clay body, which is used in bake-ware, dinnerware and decorative pieces. Stoneware can be washed in the dishwasher, used in the microwave and oven, but not placed on the stove top for cooking. Baking dishes, pie plates, etc. should be placed in a warm, not hot oven and the oven temperature raised to the desire setting for cooking. If dishes are taken from the refrigerator, they should be allowed to come to room temperature before heating in the oven.

What is Raku?

Raku is a low-fired process which leaves the clay body porous. It is not usually suitable for use as tableware unless highly glazed with a lead-free glaze. It is also not intended for use in the oven, microwave, or stovetop and it should be hand washed or only dusted. Most raku vases, unless otherwise noted by the maker, are too porous to hold water so an alternative water container must be placed inside. Raku ware is for decorative use only and should be kept out of direct sunlight.

What is Smoke-Fired Pottery?

Smoke-fired pottery is a low-fired process which leaves the clay body very porous. The surface may be waxed to enhance and maintain the smoke colouration on the surface. It should not be used in the oven, microwave or on the stovetop. It should be lightly cleaned with a damp cloth or just dusted. Smoke-fired pieces, unless otherwise noted by the maker, are too porous to hold water so an alternative water container must be placed inside. Smoke-fired ware is for decorative use only and should be kept out of direct sunlight.

What is a Shino glaze?

Shino is a term used to describe a high-fired glaze with blushes of iron colouration which is white/gray. It is very durable on stoneware and porcelain. 

What are Lusters?

Lusters are usually applied over a glaze and re-fired at a low temperature. They are used in ceramic painting and raku to give a rainbow or sheen effect on the surface of the glaze. 18-24 carat gold or silver lustre may be used as decoration on the surface of low or high fire clayware. Lusters are not durable and should be handwashed or dusted. They should be treated the same as fine china. 

What is a Crackle glaze?

Crackle glazes can be low or high fired. Low-fired crackle glaze, usually on raku is very porous. High fire crackle glaze on oriental ware is very durable. 

What is a Matte glaze?

A matte glaze is one that has no shine.  The surface may feel a bit rough.

What is a Gloss glaze?

A gloss glaze has a very high sheen

How do I handle my pottery teapots?

Porcelain and stoneware teapots should be warmed with hot water first, before boiling water is poured in to steep the tea. This will prevent possible cracking of the clay body. Teapots are not intended for stovetop use.

Are oil lamps safe?

Kerosene and oil lamps have been sealed to prevent leakage of the lamp oil through the clay body. It is not advisable to use a kerosene lamp that appears to have oil seeping through the clay body, as it may be highly flammable.