By RHEA-FRANCES TETLEY
Lake Mud Pottery studio in Crestline has been expanding these past few months. They have developed a pottery studio for those who take classes and for those who belong to their club who may create their own pottery pieces on their own time schedule.
They have clay, three pottery wheels upstairs for classes and six downstairs for club members. In addition, they have glazing compounds in various colors, spray boxes, extruders and slab rollers, which can flatten clay to an even thickness and several feet in length for other applications for the potters to use on their own, 24 hours a day. The kilns are available for use as the need arises or on the regular schedule.
The pottery club idea is the brainchild of owner Joseph Velazquez, who had always dreamed of having a place where he could do his pottery work on his own schedule. Having all the equipment yourself can be expensive, so being a pottery club member is very monetarily efficient. The few other pottery club locations in Southern California are only available during regular business hours, which makes it difficult for those who work to avail themselves of their services or forces them to preschedule their time slots.
“It feels wonderful to be able to provide a creative space for those who want to make pottery in this community,” said Velazquez, who has more than 10 years of experience in making pottery and ceramic goods. He is the teacher of pottery lessons at the studio and recently expanded the pottery studio to allow more people to learn how to throw pots on a pottery wheel.
Recently, Velazquez conducted a free glazing seminar that was open to the public. During the seminar, he demonstrated how to use the various glazes and showed numerous techniques for the different types of clays and pottery shapes.
This seminar was but one of many lessons that Lake Mud Pottery has been conducting these last few months since their opening last summer. Regular lessons are $30 for a two-hour lesson on how to use the potter’s wheel; a two-day lesson of four hours of lessons is $50, and you take home your creation after it is fired. There is also a kids workshop for $25, and they take home their pot after it is fired.
“I am so happy to be a part of this community and appreciate how welcoming the town has been to this club idea. The classes have been well received,” said Velazquez.
Lake Mud Pottery now offers monthly memberships, which allows members full 24/7 access to the pottery studio with no limit on how much time or how much members may make. Their only expense is the clay. Lockers are provided to store tools and pots. All equipment, kiln time and glazes are included with the $150 club membership.
Making pottery can become an addicting medium, explained Velazquez, and the equipment can be expensive, so becoming a club member enables the many who have come to love pottery the opportunity to do it on their own time.
Lake Mud Pottery‘s retail sales shop is open Thursdays through Sundays from noon to 6 p.m. at 23988 Lake Drive. Call them during store hours at (909) 252-7612 to arrange for a class. Contact them at their studio across from the Rim Family Bowling Center. They have off-street parking in the hillside lot, or there is street parking in front of the bowling alley.