Metals Week in Idyllwild – 2014

A parachute that covers the amphitheater at Idyllwild Arts.
A parachute that covers the amphitheater at Idyllwild Arts.

 

The week was so much fun that it was like going to a circus that had monkeys that entertained you.  Not really, there were no monkeys, only squirrels and a rattlesnake, but it was a really fun week that I had up in Idyllwild during Metals Week.

The sign on the door of the class that I took.
The sign on the door of the class that I took.

I loved taking the Steel For Jewelers from April Wood and I learned a lot.  I learned that working with steel is not at all like working with silver.  I broke at least a million of 4/0 saw blades, I stopped counting at one million.  The steel that we were working with were sheets of 20g and 22g and several different gauges of steel wire.  April taught us how to weld and solder the steel.  I tried welding and I liked it, but I wasn’t good at it, I was better at soldering, which is what I spent most of my time doing in class.  When welding, there were lots of sparks and sputters and the light that was emitted was so bright, we had to wear goggles like the ones below.

My goggles...ugly, but effective.
My goggles…ugly, but effective.

There is a picture somewhere of everyone in the class wearing their goggles, a picture that I hope never surfaces on the internet.  Here is a picture of the work from our class that was presented on the last day.

Five days of the work from our class.
Five days of the work from our class.

As you can see, there are a lot of different things that can be done with steel, it can be spray painted, enameled, folded, bent, scored and accidentally or purposely rusted.  Here is a picture of April:

April showing us how easy it is to saw through two layers of steel...remember one million saw blades for me.
April showing us how easy it is to saw through two layers of steel…remember one million saw blades for me.

Here is April’s set-up for enameling steel with a torch:

Third hand holding a trivet with a piece of steel sprinkled with enamel.  Yeah, it's pretty ingenious.
Third hand holding a trivet with a piece of steel sprinkled with enamel. Yeah, it’s pretty ingenious.

Here is a picture of my earrings that I sawed out of steel.  Each pattern is glued onto a double layer of steel.

My earring pattern glued to steel.
My earring pattern glued to steel.

My earrings after they are cut out:

I broke at least one million saw blades sawing these out.
I broke at least one million saw blades sawing these out.

Here is my table mate Donna (for the second year in a row!)

The best table mate ever.
The best table mate ever.

Driving away from campus on the last day to head back home.

Driving away from campus and realizing what a beautiful place I had been taking class at for the last five days.
Driving away from campus and realizing what a beautiful place I had been taking class at for the last five days.

Still working on steel earrings after I am home:

Steel earring with gold solder.
Steel earring with gold solder.

I will post another of picture of them again when I finish them.

 

 

 

 

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