My Life and the UCSD Crafts Center

I went looking for a picture of the Crafts Center and all I could find was this picture of the rooftop and the eucalyptus grove in which the center sits. I’ve been learning and teaching here off and on for over 30 (yes!) years. In the beginning there were potters wheels in two small rooms and a patio along with the kiln and glaze area. The place has since expanded into a full service jewelry studio, hot shop, metal working, neon, photography, glass fusing, lampworking, the Grove Gallery and various workshop classes from weaving to guitar. I learned everything about ceramics, kilns and glazes from Ron Carlson, the founder and director of the center and I began my teaching career here. Over the years I have had other jobs but I always seem to return here. It is like a second home to me. In the early 1990’s I came back after working for several years in the music business. It was here that I took my first glass bead making class and the rest is history as they say.
Crafts Center classes and workshops are open to UCSD students, staff, faculty and all interested members of the community at large. Located in the center of the campus, the center provides personal enrichment and creative educational opportunities to individuals wishing to develop artistic skills in an active studio-classroom situation. Although the Crafts Center is located on the campus of UCSD it is not a part of the visual arts department or extension. When I tell people about the center and suggest classes it is frustrating when they say things like “oh it’s so expensive” or “it’s a pain to park” etc… but then they spend $500-$1000 to take a class that they have to travel far to get to and then pay for hotel and everything that goes with it. There is no pretending that it is Corning or Penland or any of the other fantastic studios around the country but the Crafts Center is the only facility of it’s kind in Southern California. The instructors are good and the price is very right. Please take a look, take a class and tell your friends.

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