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Symposia - General Info

What to Bring to the Jade Carving Workshop

Jade Carving Workshop


Deborah Wilson recommends that if you have the following items, you should bring them for the Jade Carving Workshop Jade Carving Workshop at Suttle Lake

• Respirator (3M has a good silicone rubber one)
• Waterproof Apron… if you have one
• Rubber boots, again only if you have a pair
• Ear plugs!! Very important (I recommend the foam disposable ones) and bring a small case to put them in.
• Safety glasses or visor
Bandana - keeps the dust out if your hair
• Rubber gloves, optional
• Sketch pad and pencils etc.
• Plasticine for making maquettes. I’ll have some with me as well.
• Thumb drive to download jade tooling and carving information

Keep in mind, there is an additional materials fee, depending upon the size and quality of jade you select for your project.

About NWSSA Symposia

NWSSA hosts two a year: Suttle Lake (Sisters) Symposium (for over 21years) in Oregon State, and Camp Brotherhood Symposium (for over 28 years) in Washington State. Both symposia offer something for sculptors at all levels. Beginners and intermediate carvers come to learn, grow as artists, and try new things in a supportive environment. Professional sculptors gather to work on projects, share information, get inspiration,  and often to help beginners.

Stone and tools are available for purchase from knowledgeable vendors who know the business and are carvers, too. The teachers vary from year to year, but the overriding theme of our symposiums is always the generous sharing of information with all attendees.

For those who attend it is a working holiday with like-minded folks while being fed three meals a day surrounded by everything to do with stone. Evenings are spent by the fire swapping stories, making new friends, and catching up with connections made from past symposiums.

Symposium price discounts are given to  attendees who are NWSSA members.

For more information on how to become a member click here.

Camp Brotherhood Experience

A NWSSA symposium is about learning to work with stone, the pople who carve stone, and becoming part of a larger community. Some of the students who attend think it's an "...intensely creative wonderland of a fantasy"  and  a place where you'll "...be surrounded by many positive people who are doing their work, collaborating, celebrating, and enjoying it".

Group gathering.

Bethany Moore summarized it this way:

"...at the end of day one, I had found my way with the stone, uncovering the form that I knew was held within. The days that followed got me deeper and deeper into understanding, learning through the people surrounding me, and the great workshops presented throughout the day. The open environment allows any individual, no matter their skill or knowledge, the opportunity to ask questions and feel comfortable. There is no hierarchy, no elitism, and no judgment."

One Silver Falls Experience

This is from a recent new member, Cathy Rae Smith, after her very first attendance at a Silver Falls Symposium.

"Clouds of marble dust heightened the perpetual fogging of my safety glasses. However, Alex, my mentor for the day, remedied the condensation issues, as it turned out, by providing me a decent dust mask if I promised to throw away the pitiful excuse for a mask I had been using. Foregoing the hammer and chisel after a day of minimal progress, I graduated up to the level of electric and air powered tools. I dazzled my contemporaries, I am sure, with my swift mastery of the air-powered pounding thingy and the electricity charged scrapping do-hickey, (now, don’t allow my freely tossing in all this technical jargon to intimidate).  I was a woman on a mission to pierce through the thick slab of marble. Happily, no make that triumphantly, I succeeded, with the support of kind and skilled sculptors around me."