– welcome to the –

The Blue Mountains Potters

Become a Member


The purpose of the following pages is to give you an oversight of how our group operates and fill you in on some of the rules.

The Centre’s Pottery Facilitator is Bronwyn Campbell. I can be contacted on my mobile 041104154 or email [email protected]. At present I am also The Centre’s secretary.

Ingrid Russell: 0423124473 is the Centre’s Artistic Director and co-ordinates all the classes. We share a beginner pottery class on Wednesday nights. Ingrid teaches 4 weeks of hand building and I teach 4 weeks of throwing. Ingrid also conducts other pottery classes but these sometimes change each term so please look on the website for the timetable.

We presently have about 25 designated potters that come under the BMCAC umbrella. Our group ranges in experience from beginners to fairly experienced potters with tertiary ceramic/art qualifications.

We have 3 drop in groups that meet in the orange yurt.

Monday night and Tuesday nights from 6:30pm – 9:00pm. I facilitate these two groups.

Saturday morning from 9:00 – 1pm. Michael Dausmann facilitates this group. See his facebook group: bmcacsaturdaypotters. 0415120139

 Members pay $5 per visit to help cover electricity costs.

You must contact the facilitator if you wish to attend any of these groups.

The drop in groups are generally potters who have had some experience with pottery and work independently with support and help from each other. This group contains both hand builders and throwers. Newcomers are always welcome.

We have a couple of members who do not attend our regular group or classes but regularly participate in our exhibitions.

Historically the potters have participated in two exhibitions a year. As a member you will be eligible to take part in these. Members of all levels of abilities are very welcome to take part.

The first exhibition this year will be held just before Mother’s day at the Glenbrook Hall. This is a full Members’ Exhibition and every member of the BMCAC is eligible to participate – this usually includes wall art, mosaics,  and any craft work members do.

The second exhibition known as “Clay Creations” is exclusive to the potters and is held on the 3rd weekend in October .

The committee are discussing other ideas to open our doors for sale days at the Centre. Developments will be reported in “Creations”, the Centre’s monthly magazine that you will receive each month as a member.  It will keep you up to date with all our events.


We operate out of two buildings: the pottery yurt and a kiln room. We share the store room with the other BMCAC groups.

The pottery room has 7 wheels, a slab roller and an extruder for general  use.

IMPORTANT : Please read the instruction sheet above the slab roller before using it.

We have a number of moulds you can use. We also have a small library of books and magazines you can borrow. There are also a number of pottery books in the main room library available to borrow on an honour system, just fill out the book’s card, place in the box in the cupboard and replace it in the book when it is returned to the shelf.

A number of tools are available for general use. Please clean and return after you have finished. Clay, glazes and under glazes are purchased for class members only and not for general use. Drop in members must supply their own clay and glazes. Our closest supplier is ArtSup at Kingswood.

Over the years we have had a number of glaze ingredients donated to the Centre that are available for you to use to make test batches of glazes, the results to be shared with the rest of the group. If you wish to purchase a large amount of an ingredient we have available, you may purchase it for ½ the retail price. Speak to the facilitator if you wish to do this. There are a few buckets of made up donated glazes under the shelves. You may use any of these. Just be sure that you check whether they are for stoneware or earthenware.


Always clean your work area thoroughly after use. Pottery dust is dangerous to breathe in because it contains silica and causes silicoses so never dry sweep, always wet mop and use a damp cloth.

If you ever need to sand or grind back pieces, always wear a mask and move outside.


Keys to the rooms will not be given to each member. If you wish to use the facilities outside of class/group time, please speak to your pottery teacher or the Pottery Facilitator. We can make arrangements for you to use the Centre most times if a class is not running. 


From time to time we may hold special events such as raku firings, pit firings and workshops. Also, a much loved activity is an exhibition crawl. We sometimes join the Nepean Potters for these events as we have several members in common.

If you have any questions or requests please contact Bronwyn, Michael or Ingrid. We hope you enjoy your time with us, make some firm friends and learn many new skills.   







Only pots created by class students are fired for free.

If you are not a student and your pot is included in a class firing, please pay according to % of kiln space used.

Please pay firing fees to your facilitator.

Please write a comment in the COMMENTS section if you feel something has gone wrong with the firing e.g. Under fired – front middle shelf. It might be possible to change the firings slightly if we note a specific problem.



(Please speak with Bronwyn if you have a special reason for wanting to fire higher.)


Baby Bear’s temperature is now controlled by the Harco computer that will be shared with Father Bear.

There is a single program book that lists the common programs for all the kilns.


Full load                                                 half                     quarter


1080° – 1100°               $24                     $12                     $6


1220°- 1220°                $28                     $14                     $7



Full load                                               half                      quarter


1080° – 1100°               $38                     $19                       $9.50


Price guide for smaller load:

Per Shelf: 15cm high $5       

Per shelf: 10cm high $3       


1220°- 1280°                $44                     $22                       $11


Price guide for smaller load:

Per shelf: 15cm high $5:50

Per shelf: 10cm high $ 4



Full load                                                 half                     quarter


1080o – 1100o                    $76                     $38                     $19


Price guide for smaller loads:

Per Shelf: 15cm high $9:50  

Per shelf: 10cm high $6



1220o – 1280o                  $88                    $44                    $22


Price guide for smaller loads:

Per Shelf: 15cm high $11     

Per shelf: 10cm high $7



Think carefully about the shape and size of your creation. Does it have a good solid base so it is stable during the firing? Be aware of the size of the shelves. Make pieces that fill a shelf economically e.g. Can you fit two or three bowls together? If you have made a large piece, make something that will fit on the shelf with it. Large pieces often get left out because we have nothing as tall to fill the space. We need to be able to pack a kiln as full and economically as possible.


Have you planned where you are putting the glaze to allow the piece to stand on the shelf? You must leave at least 4mm free of glaze from the basw. Always check the base before putting it on the shelves to wait to be fired. Packers will not pack pieces glazed incorrectly.

Kiln shelves are approx. $100 to replace. Always put setters under your pots where possible. Overlapping glazes makes a glaze more fluid and likely to run, leave extra unglazed area to allow for this.

Be aware that the glaze you are using is appropriate for the clay ( EW or SW) and the temp you want to fire to. Check the details on the bottle.


Think about you design and where you are going to finish the glaze. As a general rule a foot ring is not glazed. Your underglaze should finish on the same line as your glaze. Don’t leave underglaze unglazed. It is not food safe, is rough and collects grease and dirt.


Neaten your finished glaze line. The bottom of your piece should be as neat as the top.


Badly cracked and broken pots need to be discarded. It is a part of the making process. Do not waste time and energy on a failed piece – TRY AGAIN!


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