Image © Igor Miske via Unsplash

Back to School Series: Arts & Crafts in Bristol

George Maguire

As we grow older, specialise and ‘get busy’, the creative side of us can start to wither; underfed and underworked. To stop this, and to bring some fun and creativity into our days, why not pick one of these courses and get scribbling into your trusty, (yet abandoned) notepad. Spanning the brewing of beer to the process of upholstery, a 7 day odysseys and Chihuahua portrait, you have much to learn!

Smartphone Photography for Beginners at The Royal Photographic Society 
RPS House, 337 Paintworks, Arnos Vale, Bristol, BS4 3AR

We all have one, so why not learn how to master it? I am, of course talking about the modern day smart phone. A tool of near infinite utility (and distraction), our phones now have the power to take incredible pictures at the drop of a cat. The technology is there; it’s the human that lets us down… Never fear, photographer and author Jo Bradford will teach you what you need to know about good photography; including composition, theory and framing in this day long class.  

The course costs £95 for a one day class. 10.30am - 4.30pm. Click here to book. 

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Introduction to Embroidery 'Dianthus' at Royal School of Needlework 
38 The Old School House, Kingswood Estate, Britannia Road, Kingswood, Bristol, BS15 8DB

Needles can be scary… but the need not be! Suitable for complete beginners, Liz Tapper will make embroidery both highly approachable and fun. To complete your Dianthus flower (also known as ‘pinks’), you will be introduced to a selection of stitches, from Chain Stitch, Stem Stitch, Feather Stitch and French Knots. Sounds peaceful, doesn’t it?

The course costs £100 for a one day class. 10am - 4pm. Click here to book. 

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Dog Drawing at RWA Drawing School 
SGS College, Queen’s Road, Bristol, BS81PX

Dogs are arguably our closest companion and our most esteemed spiritual teachers. Why not explore this heartfelt connection through the muse of art? Why not drawing? Join artist Sally Muir (and her whippet Lily) in a session that will have you learning the ins-and-outs of capturing canine movement and character (and any other traits you may or may not attribute to your dog). Art is about expression, not perfection so why not give it a go?

The course costs £30 for half a day. 11am - 2pm. Click here to book. 

Image credit: Shipshape Boatbuilding & Woodwork via Facebook​​​​​​​
Kayak Building Course at Underfall Boatyard 
Underfall Yard, Cumberland Road, Bristol, BS1 6XG

Anyone that grew up watching Bear Grylls or Ray Mears knows that’s kayaks are the coolest vehicles modes of transport out there. Well if you take on Shipshape’s Underfall Yard based workshop you can build and own your very own! Spanning a relatively gargantuan 7-days, this is no small undertaking and will have you masterfully crafting a vessel from an assortment of materials; red cedar, English oak, ballistic nylon, urethane and leather. Hullelujah.

The course costs £1,650 for a 7-day course (all materials included). Click here to book. 

Image credit: Bristol Brewery School via Facebook​​​​​​​
Brewing Crash Course at Bristol Brewery School 
20A Wilson St, Bristol, BS2 9HH 

Love beer? Of course you do! Attain some solid brewing knowledge at the Bristol Brewery School where you can expect a day packed full of pastries, craft beer knowledge and a comprehensive tasting session. One for the barrel list…

The course costs £120 for a one day class. 9.15am - 4pm. Click here to book. 

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Deep Buttoned Foot Stool at Bristol Upholstery Collective 
186 Wells Road, Bristol, BS42AL

Who doesn’t like a cosy lounge complete with furniture that you love? Hygge is fashionable as of late (or are we on Lagom now?); as is DIY – so let’s get stuck in. A 2-day upholstery course designed by well-practiced Leigh-Anne, this is a time and space for you to design and produce a deep buttoned foot stool (DBFS) complete with those Chesterfield style deep buttons you have always secretly wanted. 

This course costs £275 for a weekend class. 9.30am - 4.30pm (two days). Click here to book. 

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