buddy rhodes

Review of the February 2019 Concrete Design School GFRC, ECC, Fabric-Forming, Post-Tensioning, DustyCrete, and Concrete Sink Workshops

Another series of Concrete Design School workshops has come and gone. It was a great week of training where we covered ECC, GFRC, SCC, UHPC, DustyCrete, Fabric-Forming, Concrete Sinks, and Concrete Countertops. We made a lot of awesome pieces, awesome friends, and even tested the strength of a sink with 8 rounds of 45-70 (spoiler, it held up great)! It’s time to rest for a minute and take a look at the production schedule for the next few months to see where we can work in another class. Keep an eye on the website, we’ll announce the dates shortly.

Post-Tensioned Concrete, Current Techniques, Old World Methods, Modern Mix Designs, and Jon Schuler! We must be California dreaming!

The stars have aligned and we just scheduled two brand new workshops to be held at Creative Crete in Angels Camp, CA, May 1-6, 2017! Brandon Gore will be teaching a class that goes in-depth on his most current techniques, including post-tensioning concrete, while Jon Schuler will be conducting a workshop on creating a multitude of finishes with the most basic of tools and techniques. Two things are guaranteed; 1. These classes are going to be a ton of fun, and 2. They are going to fill up fast! If you want to attend both workshops at a special reduced rate, check out the All-In Workshop Package. See you in California! 

Our Roots

Buddy Rhodes (left) and Brandon Gore (right) in San Francisco at Buddy Rhodes Studio, ca. 2004

Buddy Rhodes (left) and Brandon Gore (right) in San Francisco at Buddy Rhodes Studio, ca. 2004

Buddy Rhodes (center), Brandon Gore (left), and  Jon Schuler  (right) at World of Concrete in Las Vegas, 2014

Buddy Rhodes (center), Brandon Gore (left), and Jon Schuler (right) at World of Concrete in Las Vegas, 2014

As we prepare to receive attendees of the May 6-8, 2014 2.5-day Fabric-Forming Concrete Sink + GFRC Workshop, we reflect back on our beginnings.

I (Brandon Gore) have only taken one concrete related class, and that was with Buddy Rhodes of Buddy Rhodes Studio many years ago. Buddy's shop was huge, employees were everywhere, mixing, placing and polishing concrete; it was as if he and his studio were the Willy Wonka of concrete.

Thinking back, I can recall the excitement and possibility of this burgeoning industry; it's as palpable now as it was then. Concrete sinks and countertops were just coming onto the scene. GFRC hadn't become the standard and fabric-forming was unexplored. Anything was possible, which was good and bad. Decorative and interior architectural concrete hadn't gained a foothold yet, so the thoughts of failure were visceral - could a small studio make it? That was uncharted territory. 

A decade later and that question has been answered, and it is a resounding 'YES!' Small studios can not only survive but thrive. The materials, tools, technologies and processes have gone through a quantum leap since then, but the entrepreneurial ethos remains a constant. The sustained heartbeat of this industry comes from the artisans and craftsman that care deeply about the quality of each and every piece they create by hand. It is in this spirit that we welcome the attendees of the May 6-8th workshop, and we hope to see them grow along with the industry in the coming decade.