Species-Specific Bonsai Techniques (Year-Long Course - each session priced individually)
Bonsai Mujo's carefully tailored year-long sessionals are aimed at providing students with a comprehensive hands-on knowledge informed by sound techniques on how to develop and care for species-specific bonsai. The sessional tutorials offered are as follows:
b. Deciduous Bonsai Intensive Course
c. Juniper Bonsai Intensive Course
The above courses involve a year-long commitment which includes tutorials during all the four seasons of the year. The seasonal start time of each course will depend on which species is being studied. The bonsai work/techniques involved in any one session will be appropriate to the season and the bonsai's particular stage of development. During these intensives, the Bonsai Mujo instructor hopes to encourage a collaborative educational atmosphere among the participants. These Intensive courses will be limited to 4 participants at any one session, and is aimed particularly at dedicated bonsai enthusiasts focussed on improving and clarifying their understanding of specific species dedicated to bonsai training.
The Intensive Sessionals at the Bonsai Mujo School will be up and running in the Autumn of 2014 beginning with the Pine Bonsai Intensive Course.
Advanced carving techniques (Two Sessions)
Deadwood creation is part and parcel of the design of collected trees. Yet, it's the most neglected aspect of bonsai design. This workshop aims to demystify carving by presenting a rationale for it and by introducing carving tools and techniques used to carry out a substantial carving project. Students will develop a carving plan in relation to one of their own trees and carve their trees in two stages:
Workshop 1: block carving;
Worshop 2: refined carving.
By the end of the two sessions, students will have developed an understanding of the variety of tools and techniques that may be used for carving. They will also have gained an appreciation for carving aesthetics. They will, by then, have had a hands-on exposure to all the stages of a carving project.
This workshop is limited to 4 participants. Students must supply a tree to be carved.
Bonsai Design/Critique Programme (Single session)
A basic skill a bonsai enthusiast should learn is how to assess a tree's potential to be realised as a bonsai. Before any styling decisions can be made on a tree, a bonsai enthusiast must first learn to 'see' the essential quality that might make a tree worthy for bonsai styling. The ability to assess a tree's aesthetic potential is at the heart of bonsai styling and, needless to mention, the more well-versed we are in our ability to critique a tree, the more clear we can come to comprehend the aesthetic principles/qualities that might make a good bonsai.
This class is offered as a single session but in two parts. Part one will begin first with a critique session on a number of bonsai at different stages of development. The aim here is to create a conversation around the issue of aesthetic principles that might strengthen or weaken a bonsai's appeal. Part two will then invite the participant to apply those same aesthetic principles to a tree that they wish to style, or a bonsai that they wish to improve upon. While the work done on a tree such as pruning and wiring will not affect the essential quality (attractive focal point) of a tree, it is the application of aesthetic principles to guide our pruning and wiring that will help create a good bonsai.