Fall 2022 Workshops

Basic Techniques of Pinhole Photography with Peter Brown

October 6, 2022

6-8 PM

Member $65/ $75 for General Public. Click HERE to purchase tickets.

Learn the basic techniques of pinhole photography and B&W darkroom print-making techniques with Connecticut photographer Peter Brown. In this workshop, participants will be using a simple plywood-constructed Pinhole camera that takes 4″ x 5″ film holders. Rather than film, participants will experiment with 4″ x 5″ B&W positive photographic paper, which will enable them to process prints using basic B&W darkroom chemicals in a makeshift “dark room” at the Museum.

About Peter:

Photographer Peter Brown resides in Pine Meadow, Connecticut. He received a BFA in 2-dimensional and 3-dimensional design from the Hartford Art School. After graduating, Peter applied his sculptural skills in construction, later changing course and taking a job in the commercial advertising photography field. After apprenticing with two Hartford area photographers, he ventured out on his own to form Woodruff/Brown Photography in 1985. Peter is still active in the field of architectural photography, capturing high-end commercial and residential projects for his architect clients’ marketing and advertising needs. He began experimenting with the pinhole alternative photographic process during the height of the pandemic and was pleased with his initial results, leading him on a unique artistic journey. Peter has also created a series of photographic works featuring abandoned vehicles and assemblage sculptures from discarded and repurposed rusted metals and wood.


Beyond the Basic Sand Shaded Fan with Bob Van Dyke

October 13, 2022

6-8 PM

Member $20/ $25 for General Public. Click HERE to purchase tickets.

Join Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking Director Bob Van Dyke as he teaches woodworkers new techniques for creating sand shaded fans.

Shaded fans were a common decorative motif in Federal style furniture. They were often inlaid into the corners of tabletops and drawer fronts and were made in many different styles and sizes. The segments of the fan are shaded using hot sand and then put together to create a three-dimensional effect. After making the basic ¼ fan, Bob will get into variations including creating circles, ½ circles and ovals with all sorts of interesting, curved segments. The process is fascinating, and the inlays can be used in all sorts of projects- from a tabletop, a door panel or a drawer front to a box top or tray. Don’t miss this chance to learn some new techniques that you can start to add to your woodworking projects!

About Bob:                                                                                                                                    

After 18 years as an award-winning chef in French restaurants, Bob left the business to begin a career in woodworking and teaching. Furniture making had provided an outlet to the pressures of the restaurant business until 1993 when he started the Harris Enterprise School of Fine Woodworking in Manchester, Connecticut. In seven years of operation, the school gained national exposure and recognition.

In 2000, Bob formed a business partnership to open the Connecticut Valley School of Woodworking (CVSW) in Manchester. The school was an instant success, and the demand for classes was so great that a second shop was built to allow two classes to run simultaneously. He continually strives to expand his skills and knowledge and had been studying and building period furniture for over 25 years. He is a Contributing Editor for Fine Woodworking Magazine and has written articles for Woodshop News and American Period Furniture. He has also done many videos for www.finewoodworking.com. Bob’s school offers a variety of classes taught by himself and by many of today’s top woodworking instructors. This variety of instructors and styles ensures that there will be something for everyone at CVSW.

Bob’s approach to teaching centers on the belief that people learn “by doing rather than by watching”. Successful furniture making also depends on utilizing a sensible combination of machine woodworking and handwork. Bob’s classes feature hands-on woodworking projects that promote mastery of both hand tool and machine woodworking techniques. Bob teaches classes and gives seminars at several different schools and woodworking guilds around the country. He is an active member of the Society of American Period Furniture Makers and was the founder and editor of the Society’s quarterly e-magazine Pins & Tales until 2019. Bob resides in a converted Horseshoe nail factory in Hartford, Ct. just three blocks from the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art. He is especially interested in Federal style furniture and the inlay work that was such a big part of that style.


Paper Star Workshop with Gay Ayers

October 20, 2022

10 AM – 1 PM

MEMBER PRICE:  $65 / GENERAL PUBLIC:  $75. Click HERE to purchase tickets.

Join us for a hands-on paper star workshop with visual artist and NSCDA-CT member Gay Ayers. In this workshop, you will be folding, cutting, and constructing a beautiful large paper star that can be displayed for celebrations and holidays. The ease in which this process can be done will surprise you!  Workshop materials (enough to create three paper stars) will be provided. Please bring scissors and double-sided tape.

About Gay Ayers

As a visual artist of a variety of things, such as book artist, paper artist, calligraphy, photography, miniature book collector and more, Gay is constantly creating and thinking up new structures or figuring out how others might have made something. She enjoys sharing ideas with others so that they, too, can find their own creativity, having taught in schools, art workshops, libraries, small and large groups.

Gay’s background consists of studying with many well-known artists, calligraphers, and photographers. She has, at times, taken yearlong classes with these people. For years she has attended International Calligraphy Conferences, which brought together teachers from the U.S.A., Canada, Europe, Asia, and Australia. This led Gay to study in Wales with Donald Jackson, O.B.E., the calligrapher to Queen Elizabeth II, and the incredible artist who, with 23 scribes, led the way for 14 years to create the complete handwritten St. John’s Bible, finished in 2014.

Gay’s photography world consisted of studying at the Santa Fe Workshops and the Maine Photo Workshop, along with individual photographers. It helped that she is a traveler who led an adventurous life on 5 of the 7 continents, freelancing and selling her work through a licensing agent, stock photography, and on her own.  Much earlier on, Gay was active in The Embroiderers’ Guild of America, having achieved her master’s certification. Later she turned to textiles again, but in another form. She began a successful business of restoring and cleaning linens, vintage and contemporary.

For Gay, each day is a new beginning, a new place to start, and a day to enrich her life. After living in Farmington, Connecticut, for 49 years, she moved to a small town in New Hampshire, east of Concord. A new series of adventure, exploration, art, and belonging fills Gay’s new life with a recently built studio for the continuation of creativity.