It looks like you're using an older version of Internet Explorer. Upgrade your browser to view this site—it's easy and free.



Penland School of Crafts

Penland School of Crafts | Spruce Pine, NC

Spruce Pine NC - Penland School

Photo credit: Penland School of Crafts |

Be Fearless!

Be Fearless! It’s hidden, rustic, friendly and mildly Bohemian – in a good way. Visitors can wander into working studios, meeting artists and generally soaking up the creative atmosphere.

Penland School of Crafts is a national center for craft education that helps people live creative lives. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, near Spruce Pine, Penland offers workshops (one, two and eight weeks), in books & paper, clay, drawing, glass, iron, metals, photography, printmaking and letterpress, textiles, and wood. The school also sponsors artists’ residencies, community education programs and a craft gallery.

Here’s an excerpt from a class description on drawing and painting.

Instructor Bill Logan, on teaching Fearless Ink: “In a gleeful and hugely exploratory experience, we will do our inventive best to throw every notion of drawing and perception completely off balance ... These are the only stipulations: You will be working in ink and you must fearlessly make marks!”

Sounds like fun, and it is. Penland does not require students to be expert craftspeople, although professionals mingle and share with novices. All ages (students must be at least 18) and all experience levels take classes. For instance, there may be students taking glassblowing who have never touched a blow pipe in their lives, while other students may have their own studios and are taking a class to expand their knowledge and techniques.

Wow factor: You’ll learn something about the craft you study, but you’ll learn even more about yourself. For some, Penland is a yearly pilgrimage site that frees them from daily pressures and encourages a blossoming of the soul.

The setting is described as rural, pastoral and even idyllic. Friendships are forged that last a lifetime, and skills are learned that enrich the lives of all who participate.

Hint: Many classes fill up quickly. Don’t dawdle if you’re interested.

For More Information:

Share this article: