Vacancy – Studio Assistant


Role: Studio Assistant – Ceramics (Freelance Contract)

Reporting to: Studio Director

Fixed Term: 70-100 hours (approx. 1 day per week) between Sept 2018 and Jan 2019

Rate: up to £10 per hour (depending on experience)

Hours: flexible, mainly weekdays plus some weekends and evenings

Deadline: Midnight Monday 10th September


Job Description

The main purpose of this role is to assist with the daily operations of our ceramics studio. This position is based at our processing studio within walking distance of Leeds city centre.

You should have previous experience working in a ceramics studio, ideally with a relevant undergraduate degree and a track record as a crafts maker/designer. You should be highly motivated with appropriate technical and practical skills. Ideally you’ll be a problem solver capable of taking responsibility for all aspects of studio support.

Main duties & responsibilities:

  • Reclaiming clay.
  • Making slips and glazes.
  • Glazing and processing finished work, samples and tests.
  • Loading, unloading, programming and firing kilns.
  • Preparing clay for workshops and events – mainly rolling slabs, slip-casting, press-moulding, extruding.
  • Keeping records of student work: tracking batches of work through post production phases.
  • Packing work ready for collection or delivery.
  • Maintaining the studio, tools and equipment and signaling-up servicing and repair when needed.
  • Monitoring materials and stock and advising when stock is running low.
  • Helping with any studio activities and events that require additional support.
  • Assisting with aspects of manufacturing prototypes, examples and products.
  • Adhering to, and maintaining, relevant health and safety regulations.
  • Recording processes, techniques and finished works for marketing purposes.
  • Assisting at workshops and events.
  • Assisting with deliveries of materials and equipment.

Person Specification

Essential Desirable Method of Assessment
Qualification and Training Experience as a crafter or designer-maker in a relevant subject. Undergraduate degree in Ceramics Cover Letter, CV
Previous experience working in a ceramics studio or similar. Cover Letter, CV
Skills and Experience Practical skills in handbuilding and extruding. Practical skills in throwing, slip casting, mould making and three-dimensional prototyping. Cover Letter, Interview, Portfolio
Experience mixing and preparing clays, slips and glazes. Experience testing, developing and formulating glazes and slip recipes. Cover Letter, CV, Interview, Portfolio
Practical skills in applying glazes to a range of forms and preparing work for firing. Able to operate and maintain a wet back spray booth. Cover Letter, Interview, Portfolio
Experience loading, unloading and monitoring kilns. Able to operate and maintain kilns. Cover Letter, CV, Interview
Able to implement and maintain effective systems and written records to track student work through each stage of production. Cover Letter, CV, Interview
Experience reclaiming and storing clay. Able to operate and maintain a de-airing pugmill. Cover Letter, CV, Interview
Experience using glaze blungers, blenders and electric drills. Cover Letter, Interview
Experience photographing processes and techniques using a smartphone or digital SLR. Cover Letter, Interview, Portfolio
Proficiency in using Google Drive and Dropbox to access and share resources. Cover Letter, CV, Interview
Knowledge and Understanding Awareness of common technical issues and flaws in ceramic production and glaze application. Cover Letter, Interview
Awareness of hazards, and related responsibilities, when handling raw materials, operating equipment and maintaining a safe working environment. Knowledge of handling, processing and storing raw materials safely. Cover Letter, Interview
Knowledge of firing cycles and how to program kilns. Cover Letter, Interview
Other Attributes Keen eye for detail. Portfolio
Demonstrable interest in materials, making, fabrication and how things work. Cover Letter, CV, Portfolio
Technical and practical problem-solving experience. Creative approach to problem-solving. Cover Letter, CV, Portfolio
Able to work efficiently and independently and meet deadlines. Cover letter, Interview, Reference
Interest in ceramics, design and/or allied areas of interest. Cover letter, Interview
Able to follow written and verbal instructions. Cover letter, Reference
Pro-active, involved, dependable, reliable, doer. Cover letter, CV, Interview, Reference
Good written and verbal communication skills. Cover letter, CV, Interview


To apply, please send a cover letter and CV to

Deadline: Midnight Monday 10th September

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Sunken Studio is delighted to offer ceramics taster days and short courses led by a skilled practitioner and experienced, fully qualified, tutor. Hands-on sessions provide insight into a selection of techniques and processes and are designed to introduce beginners and enhancers to advanced working methods and practices. The studio can accommodate groups of 3-4 people – perfect for anyone wanting a relaxed and instructive experience.