Applications are now open for Craft Scotland's flagship maker learning and development programme.
Now in its fourth year, the COMPASS: Emerging Maker Programme focuses on nurturing talent and equipping individual makers with the skills they need to create a successful, sustainable, resilient business and creative practice.
About the programme
The programme takes a practical approach to nurturing a creative business through the early stages of development. The programme is delivered through a combination of online workshops, an immersive five-day residential, one-to-one sessions, specialist advice, peer learning, work critiques and mentoring. It draws on the experience and skills of established makers and creative industry experts who share their insights and advice.
Each participant will be matched with a mentor at the end of the programme. You will also be provided with resources to enhance your learning experience. Throughout the programme, participants will be supported by the Craft Scotland team who will steer you through the process and answer any questions you might have.
See previous year's programmes and participants:
- COMPASS: Emerging Maker Programme 2021
- COMPASS: Emerging Maker Programme 2020
- COMPASS: Emerging Maker Programme 2019
Application Pack & Guidance
Full information about the programme, maker profile, eligibility and fees is available in the Application Pack & Guidance. We recommend reading through the information provided before applying.
Alternative formats: Application Pack & Guidance
- Download a simplified version for screen readers (Downloads a Word document)
- Download a large font (18pt) version (Downloads a Word document)
Who can apply?
We are looking for up to ten professional, practicing makers who have been in business between one and four years. You will produce design-led, contemporary one-off pieces or small batch production.
You may be:
A recent graduate (of any discipline) newly entering the craft sector
A maker moving into a craft profession later in life, or as a second career
A self-taught maker or one who has come to the profession via informal educational routes (community education, online learning, evening classes etc.)
A maker who is now looking for ways to develop a new or relatively new craft business
We are looking for makers who:
Produce works of contemporary craft
Demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of materials, excellence in making (process and skill), and an artistic vision.
Work within the following materials/disciplines: ceramics, wood, jewellery, glass, textiles, furniture, lighting, leather, basketry, bookbinding, millinery and mosaics.
Visit the Craft Scotland website for craft disciplines we support.
Makers using digital technologies and modern materials within their work are expected to demonstrate that hand skill and craft knowledge is the lead component in both the concept and finished object.
We are particularly interested in makers who would like to take their business to the next level and can demonstrate they have the potential, drive and ambition to do so.
Craft Scotland believes craft is culturally significant, essential to our economy and meaningful to our communities. We believe that everyone should have the opportunity to see, enjoy, learn about and participate in craft.
We are committed to equality and opposed to all forms of unfair discrimination. We welcome applications from candidates from all backgrounds, particularly those under-represented in craft.
While we encourage makers to consider applying for a profile on the Craft Scotland Maker Directory, please note this is not a criterion of application for this opportunity.
Dedicated places for under-represented makers
We have dedicated places on COMPASS: Emerging Maker Programme 2022 for makers with lived experience of being Black, Asian, Mixed Heritage and/or a Person of Colour, refugee, D/deaf, disabled and/or working class.
These dedicated COMPASS places have been created because we know that specific groups of makers are systematically under-supported in the craft sector.
This strand of work is part of Craft Scotland’s updated Equalities, Diversity and Inclusion Policy and Roadmap, and we will guarantee an interview for any applicant who fits the lived experience above and meets the maker criteria.
For these dedicated places we can offer a number of fully subsidised places.
How to apply
Applicants should apply through the Craft Scotland online application form.
Before starting your application, please be aware that you will need to submit:
A maker statement
Images of five pieces of work– these should be representative of the type of work you are currently making
An image of yourself. Preferably this would be a photograph of you at work, with your work, in your studio or delivering a workshop
Answers to specific questions about your business
Reasons why you are interested in this opportunity and how you think your business will benefit
We recommend you prepare your answers on a separate document before beginning your application form, to make sure you have a back-up of your responses. Make the most of your application with the helpful tips in our Application Pack (opens PDF).
Successful applicants will be expected to pay a £350 participation fee (this contribution is towards the cost of administering the programme, including staff costs, accommodation for the residential parts of the programme and speaker/mentor fees).
COMPASS is generously supported by the William Grant Foundation and Creative Scotland. Places on the programme are subsidised by Craft Scotland allowing you to access high-quality, affordable training in Scotland.
The participation fee contributes to the cost of administering the programme; including staff costs, accommodation for the residential parts of the programme and speaker/mentor fees.
You may also, by prior agreement, pay the participation fee in three instalments.
Support with your application
If you are interested in this opportunity but feel there are some barriers to participation (caring responsibilities, financial, accessibility, travel, slow internet/devices etc.) please do get in touch. We would be happy to discuss this with you and see what support is available. Please email the Craft Scotland team on firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to speak to a member of the Craft Scotland team in advance of applying, then please do get in touch.
Deadline for application is 5pm, Thursday 11 November 2021.
Interviews will be conducted by Zoom in late November 2021, and applicants will be notified by Friday 3 December 2021.
Participation fee due for payment on 5pm, Friday 7 January 2022 (unless instalments have been agreed).
The programme is due to start in January 2022.
COMPASS is Craft Scotland’s learning and development programme created specifically for makers. Each strand of the programme is designed to support makers at key stages of their business and creative practice.
The COMPASS: Emerging Maker Programme is aimed at professional practicing makers in the early stages of their craft career, who have been in business between one and four years.
We have worked closely with Chartered Occupational Psychologist, Elaine Furnivall, Founder and MD of Aviour, who has over 20 years in personal and organisational behaviour and executive coaching, to design the programme.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Statement
We appreciate that the potential longer-term impacts of Coronavirus (COVID-19) are currently unknown, and we do not know what the landscape will look like throughout 2022. Applicants should be aware that parts of the programme may be subject to change or postponement.
We will keep makers up to date with any changes to the programme brought about by new restrictions or other external factors. With all decisions, our priority is the safety and wellbeing of participants.
Throughout the application and selection process, and the duration of the programme itself, Craft Scotland will continue to monitor and follow the most up to date Scottish Government guidelines. Should any significant changes arise in relation to Coronavirus (COVID-19), we will endeavour to keep makers informed in a timely manner.