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How to become a stonemason in Australia: careers in stonemasonry

Stonemasons work in a variety of contexts from restoring heritage buildings, new construction projects, making tombstones and monuments, or creating ornamental sculptures. They craft, shape and cut all kinds of stone from hard limestone to soft sandstone. Stonemasons also polish and restore stone surfaces for cosmetic purposes. This is a highly specialised field involving the use of a rage of hand and power tools.
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Being a stonemason: daily duties

Stonemasons cut and shape stone using machines or hand tools. They cut and polish granite and marble for use in construction. Stonemasons also design, cut and carve monumental masonry such as headstones for cemeteries or bases for statues. They cut lettering into stonework with specialist equipment, as well as undertake creative work such as sculptures. A stonemason may also construct walls using stone slabs, lay stone paving, granite or marble floor tiles and fix stone facades to buildings. They also repair and replace the stonework on old buildings and monuments.

Tasks:

  • Cutting, shaping and transporting stone
  • Technical drawing
  • Engraving stone
  • Repairing building facades
  • Cutting and laying stone paving

Being a stonemason: skills for success

Stonemasons need to have a deep theoretical and practical understanding of all aspects of masonry work. They also need to have a good level of fitness as this role can often be physically challenging. Being able to work at heights can also be a requirement, as well as the ability to work with your hands and an enjoyment of practical work. Stonemasons should also have an aptitude for technical drawing and working with computers.
Skills/attributes
  • Good level of physical fitness
  • Ability to acquire new skills easily
  • Enjoy working with your hands
  • Able to work at heights
  • Good eye for detail

Specialised roles within stonemasonry

After mastering the fundamental skills as a stonemason, there are further opportunities to expand your career within this industry. Specialisations are available that allow you to emphasise and explore your personal strengths and interests.
  • Engraver
    Engravers carve letters or symbols onto stone and are often contracted by individuals or companies to fulfil a specialty service. They most frequently work in monumental masonry in cemeteries and memorials.
  • Banker mason
    Banker masons work with stone for the purposes of larger constructions and measure, cut and deliver the stone needed for these projects. They read detailed architectural plans to ensure they supply blocks to the correct dimensions and that the material used for the application is appropriate.
  • Carver masons
    Carver masons are called on to create structures that have artistic merits, such as water fountains, religious icons and other sculptural work. They are usually commissioned to do this work but can sometimes do it on spec.

Educational pathways for stonemasons

There are courses that can help you to get a head start in a stonemasonry career. To work on building sites in Australia, it is a requirement that you hold a Construction Induction Card.
  • Start your career
    Get a head start in the construction industry with one of these entry-level courses.
  • Strengthen your skills
    Improve your credentials and work towards an industry-recognised qualification.
  • Build your resume
    Pull together a great skills profile to further your career goals.
  • Industry requirements
    To work on building sites in every state and territory in Australia, you must hold a Construction Induction Card..
  • Finding Work
    Put your training to good use and get the best professional head start in your stonemasonry career. Emphasise your personal strengths and achievements in your resume and target your cover letter to the job description listed.
  • Employment Prospects
    Over the next five years, there is expected to be a slight growth in employment rates for stonemasons in Australia, with an average number of job opportunities opening up.

Resources for stonemasons

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