Understanding Glazes

Learning why your glazes work and don’t work, is the most important step in taking control of your studio.

Course Overview

Understanding Glazes Online is a 4-month course focused on the science behind glazes. No more myths and legends about how glazes work, only facts and science. ​The course provides information and science to help everyone utilize glazes in ways that will help them take control of their materials and make their studios the best they can be. Students will engage with the teacher and other students during the bi-weekly, live, online discussions.  We will discuss the questions from the class that arise, as well as explore experiments and the studio in general. In addition, students are provided with discussion forum for each lecture, so they may start the conversation, there and then.

This course aims to develop a basic understanding of the following: 1) ceramic materials and their chemistry, origins, properties, and functions; 2) the tenants of heat and temperature as related to ceramic performance; 3) glaze formulas, analysis, and performance; 4) glaze flaws, their identification, and corrections; and 5) the function of ceramic oxides and color.

This is the same course that Matt Katz has been teaching for years at world class institutions, including The New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University, Rhode Island School of Design and Harvard University.

Sample Video

Course Outline

  • Introduction to Learning Online – Introduction to Online Learning
  • Welcome to Glaze Formulation – Introduction to Ceramic Science
  • Geology – Geography
  • Chemistry – Periodic Tables; Atoms
  • Materials Vol. I
  • Materials Vol. II
  • Materials Vol. III
  • Seger and Stull – Temperature; How cones work; Mapping Temperature on Stull
  • U.M.F. Calculations – A how to with a single material: A how to with a glaze
  • Temperature and Durability – Flux Ratios
  • Boron – Durability; Temp Talk; How to deal with Boron;
  • Special Effects – HIgh Sodium Glazes; Shino Glazes; Wood Ash
  • Glazes; Crystalline Glazes; Oil Spot and Temmoku Glazes; Copper Reds; Raku;
  • Glaze Flaws – What are they?; What to do about them;
  • Color – How colorants work; All the colors in the rainbow

Course Announcements

New Course option!  SELF-GUIDED OPTION OF UNDERSTANDING GLAZES!

Our convenient self-guided version allows you to start at any time that works best for you at your own speed and on your own schedule.  The Self-Guided Understanding Glazes option includes immediate and unlimited access to all of the on demand, lectures and five optional learning lab experiments for a period of four months.  Students can also ask questions in the course discussion pages.

Now enrolling in the April 2024 Session

  • Sign up today to reserve your spot!
  • Enrollment is limited!  

Enrollment

We have 3 options to choose from!

Lectures Only Option – $400

You can begin right now. Enroll and start learning today!

If you want just the lectures:

You can start RIGHT NOW!

Lectures Only experience course includes:

  • 14 total – 1 to 2 hour on-demand lectures
  • Certificate of Completion

Cost:  $400 for 4 months of unlimited access to all of the Understanding Glazes lectures (optional Patreon available for continued access)

Upgrade option available to future full or self-guided course for only additional tuition + $50 upgrade fee

Enroll Here!

Note this option does not include labs, live Q&A discussions or digital book- Check out the full course or self-guided and premium options

Self Guided Option

Limited Time Pricing: $400

Save $100!  Normally $500.  You can begin right now. Enroll and start learning today!

If you want the lectures + the labs + the digital glaze book:

You can start RIGHT NOW!

Self guided experience course includes:

  • 14 total – 1 to 2 hour on-demand lectures
  • 5 optional learning lab experiments
  • Lifetime access to the new CMW Digital Glaze Book with Matt’s Analysis
  • Access to Course Discussion pages to ask questions about class content
  • Supplemental readings
  • Downloadable copies of lecture slides
  • Certificate of Completion

Cost:  $400 for 4 months of unlimited access to all of the Understanding Glazes lectures and labs and book  (optional Patreon available for continued access)

Upgrade option available to future premium option for the additional tuition + $50 upgrade fee

Enroll Here!

Note this option does not include live Q&A discussions but students can post questions

Premium Option – $950

Class starts April 1st!

If you want the lectures + labs + live discussions + the digital glaze book + all of the new premium benefits:

The class session will officially begin April 1st, but you can enroll now to get all of the extra premium benefits!

Premium experience course includes:

  • 14 total – 1 to 2 hour on-demand lectures
  • 5 optional learning lab experiments
  • LIVE bi-weekly online Q&A discussions on Tuesdays 10am, Wednesdays 2pm, Thursdays 8pm EST (NYC time)
  • Lifetime access to the new CMW Digital Glaze Book with Matt’s Analysis ($250 value)
  • Lifetime access to all 3 CMW Workshops – Glaze Our Lives, The Middle Glazes and Glazed & Confused!  ($425 value)
  • Early, immediate access to the Lectures Only Understanding Glazes to get a head start until the course starts ($400 value)
  • Immediate 4 months access to our clay course – Lectures Only Intro to Clay Bodies ($400 value)
  • Access to Course Discussion pages to ask questions about class content
  • Supplemental readings
  • Downloadable copies of lecture notes
  • Certificate of Completion

Cost:  Only $950 for premium experience (Over a $1,825 value!)

Enroll HERE!

Note this option includes everything!

We’ve bundled together our Lectures Only courses at a great price of $1,400!  Save $300!

  • 16 months of unlimited access to Lectures Only Understanding Glazes, Lectures Only Intro to Clay Bodies, Lectures Only Advancing Glazes and Lectures Only Crystal Ball.
  • Upgrade option available to each of the full courses for only additional tuition + upgrade fee $50 per course
  • Enroll Here!
  • Note this option does not include labs or live Q&A discussions

Instructor

Meet Your Instructor Matt Katz

Matthew Katz

Matt Katz has been teaching for years at world class institutions including The New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University, Rhode Island School of Design and Harvard University.

Course Reviews

What Students are Saying

★★★★★

Just so you know, after more than 50 of making pots on and off, I’m setting up a new studio to make truly durable and pleasing ware for use in the home. I was totally at sea as to finding suitable clay and glazes till I found CMW. CMW pulled my bacon out of the fire big time! Now I am confident that I will have the knowledge I need to accomplish my goal. I’m also really interested in chemistry now, which I could never have imagined! You guys are totally the BOMB!!! Kudos!

~

Roger – March 2022

★★★★★

“I just wanted to feed back how much I enjoyed this course. I now feel so much more confident in my knowledge and I’m already seeing the benefits it has brought. Matt has a great teaching style, I like that he repeats key information throughout the lectures to help embed the knowledge but that he will also tell you a bit more information about something as he is introducing it but just as you think your brain is about to go into overload he says “but we’ll talk more about that later”. It is a really good tool as it contextualises the thing you are learning about but then you immediately relax and just take in the info that he wants you to know in that particular lecture. The hangouts were excellent too and again, Matt was generous with his knowledge and super patient….” – Susan F.  – January 2023 Understanding Glazes student

~

Susan F. – Student – Jan 2023

★★★★★

Hey Matt – I just wanna thank you and Rose again for teaching, in a really enjoyable way, the science behind glazes.I would’ve never imagined how cool chemistry could be and CMW’s workshops will change your studio forever” is nothing short of the absolute truth. Wish you guys a wonderful holiday and I’ll see you later!” Giuliano R. – Student – Dec 2021

~

Giuliano R. – Student – Dec 2021

★★★★★

…today one of my regular customers said, “ I went to a pottery show – and I can honestly say your glazes are above and beyond anything we saw there.” Very cool that education and work pays off.””

~

Erik – Aug 2021

Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to Your Most Pressing Questions

What experience level is this class for?

Our classes are designed for makers of all levels. We’ve had professionals with 50 years of experience and we’ve had folks take our classes after having one studio class at their local community college. Everyone comes out truly understanding glazes.

Are you going to talk about…

Let me stop you there. We are going to talk about EVERYTHING.

Temperatures? Yes? Atmosphere? You better believe it. Materials? No way around it. At the end of this course, you will have a thorough understanding of ALL aspects of clays.

Why should I take this class?

I’ve got books. Books are great, but books are a supplement and a reference in education. The reason why school is still lecture classes, is because audio/visual learning is still the most powerful educational tool.

When I first started studying glazes I got a book, and I read every word…and I understood about 1% of it. The experience of listening and looking helps us to truly UNDERSTAND a subject.

I work at temperature X, is this class relevant to me?

Yes, we talk about glazes as a whole. All firing temperatures are interrelated. We’ll teach you all of the how’s and why’s of all glazes.

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