Carving in wood or stone

Course Dates: 11/04/24 - 27/06/24
Time: 18:00 - 21:00
Location: Keeley Street
Get inspired by trying carving techniques in stone or wood and create your own small carving in wood and stone. Suitable for anyone from beginners to experienced carvers. This course will explore the characteristics of wood and stone, lead you through the steps of design and carving, encourage you to explore and develop your ideas, and try more experimental techniques.
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Full fee £499.00 Senior fee £399.00 Concession £324.00
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Carving in wood or stone
  • Course Code: VU820
  • Dates: 11/04/24 - 27/06/24
  • Time: 18:00 - 21:00
  • Taught: Thu, Evening
  • Duration: 12 sessions (over 12 weeks)
  • Location: Keeley Street
  • Tutor: Belinda Edwards

Course Code: VU820

Choose a start date  

Thu, eve, 11 Apr - 27 Jun '24

Duration: 12 sessions (over 12 weeks)

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

Explore the ancient art of carving, from the initial conception of ideas and developing a design, through to carving techniques and creating a full sculpture. Those with no sculptural experience will be led through the process stage by stage. Those with more experience will be encouraged to stretch their ideas, reflect on how to improve their designs and given the opportunity to try more experimental techniques.

What will we cover?

The initial parts of the course will focus on understanding the characteristics of wood and stone as materials. You will be introduced to the work of many sculptors, both contemporary and historical. Time will then be spent making several maquettes (small models) in clay, before embarking on a piece in wood or stone. Carving techniques will be taught and explored as your carving progresses. We will also cover safe working practice and tool maintenance.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Develop ideas for carvings by making maquettes.
- Demonstrate an understanding of basic carving techniques.
- Demonstrate some knowledge of wood and stone sculpture, both historical and contemporary.
- Demonstrate knowledge of how to maintain tools.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

Suitable for all abilities, from complete beginners to experienced carvers.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

Through demonstrations, practical activities, group discussions and individual tuition.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

With advice from the tutor, you may choose a piece of wood or stone from our stock. The prices will vary depending on the type of wood or stone and its size.


Prices start from £6 (10cm x 10cm x 10cm)

Prices start from £16 (23cm x 15cm x 15cm)

Alabaster: Prices start from £69 (23cm x 15cm x 15cm)

Limestone: Price starts from £15 (20cm x 20cm x 7.5cm)

Basic tools are provided.

You must wear sturdy shoes, that cover the whole foot (no open toe). Please also wear old working clothes or bring overalls.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

The City Lit sculpture department offers a wide range of exciting courses that will allow you to progress from beginner to advanced and learn a range of techniques. After this course you may wish to join a similar course to develop your skills further or try something completely different. We offer courses in prop making, metal, clay, by stage. Those with more experience will be encouraged to stretch their ideas, reflect on how to improve their wax, designs and given the opportunity to try more experimental techniques. carving in stone and wood, mould making and casting in Jesmonite, or pewter and much more! Alternatively, you may wish to progress onto the year-long City Lit Sculpture course VU841, which helps you to build your own individual sculpture practice.

We are constantly adding new courses. Please ask your tutor for advice or browse the City Lit website for inspiration. It is also possible to contact our visual arts team by emailing, or calling 0203 880 2415 Monday - Friday 10am - 5pm.

Belinda Edwards

Belinda Edwards holds a degree and diploma from Central School of Art and Design, and a teaching certificate from Roehampton Institute. She has been an artist in residence and lecturer with various schools, community groups and colleges in London and has been teaching sculpture at City Lit and elsewhere since 1987. Belinda’s work has been exhibited at many galleries including The Royal Academy. This gives her a deep understanding of the importance of correct technique for accurate and effective carving, whatever the material. As part of developing her understanding of materials even further she worked for a while as a casting technician for a gallery specialising in fine art antiques casting and conserving. These skills, combined with her Fine Arts background enables her to help students to develop their own interests and projects, from first idea through sketches, maquettes, choice of material and tools, to finished sculpture. Belinda’s outstanding qualities as a tutor, are her practical understanding of the challenges faced by individual students, and her skill at enabling them both to formulate ideas and then achieve their goals.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.