The Maine Crafts Association, in partnership with the Maine Arts Commission, is proud to announce and support seven master/apprentice pairs selected for the 2020 Craft Apprentice Program (CAP):

The 2020 Craft Apprentice Program is supported by generous funding from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Maine Arts Commission, media sponsorship from Maine Home & Design and program support from MCA organizational partner, Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts.

The Craft Apprentice Program began in 2016 to provide an in-studio educational opportunity for apprentices who demonstrate a commitment to further their abilities as craft artists; they accomplish this through a significant relationship with a master artist.

Applicants apply jointly, providing clear goals, a plan for how goals will be achieved, and a budget for the apprentice’s honorarium. Both must also submit resumes and images of current work. The apprenticeship is centered on the apprentice’s goals for their studio practice and craft career over 100 hours of one-on-one in-studio learning with a master craft artist result in meeting those goals. Both master and apprentice are awarded funding. To close the program, all artists participate in an alumni gathering and a public exhibition of works created during the apprenticeship period. The 2020 exhibition will take place at Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts, with a public opening reception sponsored by Maine Home & Design on October 2, 5-7pm.

Chuck Lakin with apprentice Clifford Pettitt

Clifford Pettitt of Fairfield, ME will apprentice with Master Woodworker Chuck Lakin of Waterville, ME. Clifford and Chuck share an interest in giving back to the community and helping people access resources to meet their needs. Among other pursuits, Chuck achieves this by educating people about alternative end-of-life arrangements and building and selling his “green” coffins. His interest in green coffins is both environmental and to provide an affordable alternative to mainstream coffins. The apprenticeship will be centered on teaching Clifford to construct and customize green coffins while building on his ability to estimate project costs and provide quotes to clients, learn about woodworking tools and shop maintenance.

Jayne Redman with apprentice Barbara Hopkins

Barbara Hopkins of South Berwick, ME will apprentice with Master Jeweler Jayne Redman, Falmouth, ME. The apprenticeship will focus on furthering developing Barbara’s already strong metalsmithing technical skills into her own aesthetic; designing a product line to launch her emerging jewelry career. Barbara has studied with Jayne extensively in workshop settings and both look forward to the extended and dedicated studio based learning the CAP apprenticeship provides.

J.E. Paterak with apprentice Shelby Goldsmith

Shelby Goldsmith will apprentice with Master Jeweler J.E. Paterak, both of Portland, ME. The apprenticeship will focus on building Shelby’s emerging career in three areas: technical metalsmithing skills, building a cohesive studio practice and professionalism. Shelby and J.E. both appreciate and incorporate ephemeral objects and concepts into their studio jewelry practices which will also be a common thread throughout the apprenticeship time period.

Kenneth Kortemeier with apprentice Will Wheeler

Will Wheeler, a Portland, Maine based professional carpenter, will apprentice with Master Woodworker Kenneth Kortemeier of Bristol, Maine. The apprenticeship will result in Will  completing a ladder back chair, while building his knowledge and interest in the natural properties and use of green, or recently cut, wood and learning different options and materials for creating the chair seats. Kenneth owns, and operates Maine Coast Craft School, with his wife Angela specializing in teaching hands-on workshops in traditional green woodworking using only hand tools.

Nisa Smiley with apprentice Jennifer Marshall

Jennifer Marshall of Thomaston, ME will apprentice with Master Jeweler, Nisa Smiley in her downtown Ellsworth, ME jewelry studio. The apprenticeship will allow Jennifer to grow her basic metalsmithing skills, incorporate the use of precious metal clay (PMC) and learn to cast. These developments will build on her existing jewelry line to be more professionally presented, technically proficient and offer higher-end pieces. Both Jennifer and Nisa collect and use antique buttons, the apprenticeship brings together this unique interest and material challenge with metalsmithing and design. Nisa is CAP’s first alumni to participate in the program for a second cycle and MCA welcomes her continued involvement and opportunity to build on and share her CAP experience.

Thomas Berger with apprentice Anne Alexander

Anne Alexander of Windham, ME will apprentice with Master Thomas Berger in his Kittery, Maine workshop to learn to carve granite. Anne, an experienced sculptor, currently makes indoor and seasonal outdoor sculpture; by learning to carve granite she will be able to make and sell outdoor sculpture that can stay outside year-round and require little maintenance. Tom will also support her goals to scale-up her small ceramic, wood and alabaster designs into larger scale sculptures and help her set up a new outdoor granite carving studio.

Tim Christensen with apprentice Jena Merrill

Jena Merrill, Portland based ceramic artist will apprentice with Tim Christensen of Roque Bluffs and Portland, Maine. Jena’s goals are to grow her business through product sales as well as teaching. Tim, an artist and arts educator will help Jena develop a tiered business plan, become certified to operate the wood fired kilns at Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts so that she may access them for firing and teaching purposes and help her to develop a network of arts-integrated education professionals. Throughout the apprenticeship Jena will continue to fine-tune her current line of work to be best suited for wood firing with Tim’s guidance.

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