Classes and Open Studios

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Functional Pottery with Nathan Willever

Monday Evenings 5-7pm – 4 week sessions—-Next 4 week session starts Jan 12

River arts pottery class poster- cropped

This class will focus on making functional pottery for everyday use on the wheel. We will start developing our skills with the cup form and move onto more challenging forms such as the bowl, pitcher and plate. We will be working with cone 5 white stoneware to make durable, food safe pots. The class is open to all experience levels. $120 members – $135 non-members

Nathan Willever makes functional pottery on a slow turning, treadle style wheel in Damariscotta, Maine. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Ceramics from Maine College of Art and has assisted multiple workshops at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts.



Life sculpture

Life Sculpture Studio – 4 weeks – next session starts Jan 15

10am – 1 pm $80

A new 4-week session in life sculpture is starting Jan. 15 at River Arts Studio, 241 US Route 1 in Damariscotta. The sessions will run from 10 am to 1 pm, on Thursdays. The cost is $80. Participants will work, without instruction, from a long-term pose over a six week period. There are no formal critiques, but participants are free to ask other members or the monitor for help or advice whenever needed.

Everyone is encouraged to bring their own tools, armatures, and their preferred sculpting medium. Most participants use water based clay (self hardening or firing), or oil based clay (plasticine, plastilina), and some prefer wax. There are some tools and supplies available to borrow until you can get your own, but the selection is limited.

River Arts also offers open studios in life drawing and ceramics – times are listed on the website For more information email: or call 563-1507


Watercolor with Erica Qualey – 4 weeks – Sundays 1-4 -

Starting Jan 25  – $180


This four week session is open to anyone with beginner or intermediate painting skills. We will focus on exploring and developing techniques, learning the characteristics of watercolor and the different tools commonly used, creating interesting compositions using sketches and reference photos, and the process of planning and creating a watercolor painting. Participants will have weekly demonstrations and participate in creating quick studies to help build technique. The majority of class time will be spent on individual projects with one-on-one instructor feedback.
Participants will receive a suggested materials list from the instructor and will be expected to bring their materials to the first class along with photos and/or sketches that they are interested in painting.


Ukranian Pysanky Egg decorating with Erica Qualey- March 15th  – 1 pm – 4pm


Pysanky egg decorating is an ancient method of dying eggs using batik techniques and rich, vivid dyes.  These eggs are rich with history and tradition, originally created as charms to bring good fortune to the object symbolized in the design. For example, an egg may be decorated with bees then placed under the hive to bring good health to the hive or adorned with wheat and buried in the field to bring a bountiful harvest.  The patterns and designs were also strongly influenced by Christianity and supposedly baskets of decorated eggs were brought to church by families to be blessed during Easter services.

During this class, students will learn how to use the kistky tool to layer wax and colors to create a finished pysanky egg. We will follow a traditional pattern and learn how to apply patterns to the three dimensional surface. Because a lot of the designs for traditional pysanky are very geometric it is easy for anyone, even those who don’t feel as though they have any artistic skills, to create amazing and beautifully patterned eggs. Anyone over the age of 12 is welcome to join us. Cost $25 for members and students…..$30 for non-members Materials fee:  $15……Each student will receive a kit including a kistky tool, beeswax, patterns, and a set of dye colors to take home with them.

Erica Qualey is an artist and illustrator living in South Bristol, Maine.  Over the past 10 years she has actively creating art and exhibiting watercolor paintings in group and solo art shows throughout Maine and New Hampshire. Her most recent show was an exhibit at Husson University in collaboration with a printmaker. Along with watercolor, Erica enjoys dabbling in many other mediums from wood block printing to Pysanky to felting.  You can view a collection of her watercolors on by visiting

Learn to paint in the language of COLOR THEORY-

Instructor – Kris Engman 8 Sessions – Saturdays 9 to 1 (first time students) 1-5 (Continuing Students)   February 28 – April 18  2015





Instructor: Kris Engman. Kerstin Engman exhibits at the Arden Gallery, Boston, and the Courthouse Gallery, Ellsworth, among other venues. She received her MFA from University of Pennsylvania, where she studied with Neil Welliver, and her BFA from Maine College of Art, with additional study at Rhode Island School of Design. Engman brings a rich and broad career in painting, drawing, sculpture and digital media to the instructor’s role. In her work she explores varied visions, media, materials and genres. In 1997 she became founder and director of Project Kalocsa, a cultural exchange between Hungary and the USA. She has also worked in arts education in Maine schools and in several New England colleges, including Maine College of Art, and is presently on the faculty of University of Maine. >

All are Welcome

$250 members/ $275 non-members

Fiber Arts Workshops for 2015

Sunday April 19……..beginning drawing class…….3 hours…….10-1 pm

Sunday, May 3……….shibori silk scarves (just in time for Mother’s day)……..3 hours…….10-1 pm

Sunday June 7……….beginning feltmaking……….3 hours………..10-1 pm

Sunday August 30……….plant imprinting on fabric………..3 hours……….10-1 pm

Sunday September 20………gourd design class………..3 hours……….10-1 pm

Sunday October 18……..nuno felted scarf class……..3 hours…………10-1 pm

Sunday November 15…………..shibori silk scarves (just in time for Christmas giving)……..3 hours………10-1 pm

Sunday December 6……….birch bark ornaments and other holiday stuff…….3 hours…….10-1 pm


Figure Drawing and Anatomy with Kris Engman

Tuesdays – May 5 – June 9 2015    10-4

$300 members $350  non-members



River Arts Open Studio Schedule

Open Studio Ceramics: monitors Nate and Tessa

Tues 5-7, Wed 4-6 Thurs. & 4-6

$10/hour at the Route 1 Studio

Open Studio Life Drawing: monitor Roberta Goschke

Ongoing Wednesday evenings 6 – 9 pm$15 m/$20 n/m Studio at 241 US Route 1

Life Sculpture: monitor Rachel Oakes

Thursday mornings – 4 week sessions10am – 1 pm* Good idea to call ahead – 563-1507