Beyond Truro College – Alastair Heywood

This is a previous blog post from 2015 featuring ceramic artist and former student Alastair Heywood.

Alastair said back then, “2008 marked the end to my five year sentence at Redruth School and having no intention of staying at sixth form for round two, Truro College seemed like an oasis in the parched desert. I knew I liked art so there was no question as to whether I’d study it. I had Tristan and Louise for my first year at college and aside from both being hilarious they taught me to paint. To stop drawing what I thought was there and actually see.”

“A year into my a levels I dropped my subjects and pursued the two year National Diploma in art and design, Bernadette Gaffney, Paul Ziemacki and Robin Dowell were all wonderful tutors and I had the privilege of their frank and measured advice at every turn. However, it is Anne Thomas to whom I owe the most, she introduced me to clay. Glazes, engobes, slab building, throwing, it was all fascinating and the alchemic nature of the subject appealed to me.”

“Three years of continuous experimentation, a smattering of A/s levels and a triple distinction later I was being offered places from all of the universities to which I’d applied. Well, nearly all (I went to Wimbledon for a painting interview and came away with an offer for sculpture instead. Funny really).”

“I now have a degree in ceramic design from Central Saint Martins, as well pieces in both private collections and that of the University of the Arts London (UAL). I also have a studio in Illogan in which I can be found either up to my eyeballs in clay, quietly drawing, or printmaking.”

“My brief stint at Truro helped me work out what facets of design truly interested me, and contributed to the confidence that allowed me to apply to the universities that I did. If I were to do it again I’d hope that my experience wasn’t wildly different and that the smell of developer from the darkroom in Mylor still drifts down the hall and masks the gents.”

If you would like us to feature an article about you and your life as a student, you can submit through the contact tab in the menu bar or through your course tutor.

Beyond Truro College – Jode Pankhurst

Next in our series of past students is ceramics maestro Jode Pankhurst.

I currently live and work in Leith, Edinburgh. I make playful, bold and illustrative ceramic pieces that are either wearable or used in the home. During my time at Truro college I studied the A Level in Illustration & Graphics which was taught at the time by Jo Higgins and Natalie Hayes. It gave me a very focussed and specialised direction quite early on and ultimately influenced my decision to study at higher level afterwards. The tutors were immensely encouraging of my work, whether it 3D or 2D. I really valued this as it gave me the confidence and time to be experimental at an early stage, something you’re not always afforded later on in your studies. I went on to do the Art & Design Foundation course at Falmouth before moving to Edinburgh to complete an Illustration degree at Edinburgh College of Art. I now work from a shared studio space on a range of ceramic products that I sell from an online shop and across a series of UK stockists.”

Truro College welcomes new RBA Scholars

Truro College welcomes new RBA Scholars

Truro College art students, Stan Welch and Elisha Keyworth, are presently exhibiting their paintings at the prestigious Mall Galleries in London. This is thanks to the encouraging support of the Royal Society of British Artists (RBA) and NADFAS South West offer young artist here in Cornwall.


This year fifty six NADFAS Societies supported the venture and they submitted a staggering 368 images of original student work including paintings, ceramics and sculpture. The challenge was for RBA President James Horton and his fellow council members to pick a number of pieces, which combined the highest levels of skill, expression and draughtsmanship.
Stan and Elisha’s work is not only being displayed alongside those of professional artists at the Mall Galleries in London from 11-21 March, but has also been on show at the RBA’s RISING STARS exhibition at Lloyds Registry Gallery in the City of London.
Stan’s self portrait won the RBA 2015 John Ingram prize, which in 2010 was won by Truro College student India Bunce. By happy coincidence, India was exhibiting at the same RBA show this year, but now as a professional artist. India has recently graduated from Edinburgh after studying Fine Art Painting for three years. She has been awarded the title of ‘One to Watch’ by the RBA and clearly has a successful career ahead of her.

Putting the ‘D’ for diversity into 3D Design

Putting the ‘D’ for diversity into 3D Design

With a wide range of diverse projects that include `Steam Punk` furniture, organic architecture and even shell-fish inspired roofing over Penzance high street, this year`s students really have made their mark! With such a range of different outcomes it has made for a really interesting start to this brand new course. Students have used new technologies like 3D printing and the laser cutter, while others have kept with more traditional methods of creative making such as wire and clay sculpture, but all have enjoyed the design and making experience.