You may have noticed I haven't posted up any new creations for my Jewellery A Week Project (JAW). That's because I've abandoned it.
I started it to encourage myself to create to get out of a slump. Well now I don't feel the need to do that..... and the reason is.......I've gone back to Study :)
My friend Jane from Planet Lime encouraged me to join her in a course this year. So each Tuesday this year I will spend the day at TAFE completing a Certificate 2 in Jewellery Manufacture. I've had three days at class so far, and we have started with the basics. (There are complete beginners in the course, as well as some with more experience and it's designed to prepare for apprenticeship or to go on to the Diploma Course).
I've spent the last three lessons, sawing, piercing and filing and I'm loving it. Even though I've been doing these things for several years, it's a very hands on course and some of the piercing and filing exercises are a lot more intricate than I'd normally do in my own pieces. I'm feeling challenged and loving it! I'm learning lots of new tips and techniques too, which is great.
Week one, we spent the morning sawing and piercing the whale from Brass sheet..
Afternoon, we spent filing 4 x 4mm square copper wire to form different shapes. All I'd ever done with a file over the years is to smooth edges of hand sawn work, never anything like this! Definately felt like a beginner with this exercise.
Week two, Morning - Sawed Brass, measured up and formed into a wide band and soldered and shaped into a ring, then filed, sanded etc.
Afternoon - Started with a 4 x 4mm square copper wire, formed, soldered and shaped into a ring and then filed this into triangular type profile.
Week 3 - Were introduced to the rolling mills, we'll be making out own wire and sheet for class projects. We practised on copper first, then we were given an approx 25mm x 6mm rod of sterling which we milled into a long rectangle, taking the piece to 5mm x 1.5mm thick. We measured and made up a plain ring band from the result. The workshop has about 5 (yes 5!) rolling mills. So, the second project was to work on while we were waiting for a mill, as there's 12 in the class. We cut brass, domed it, soldered it to sheet, sawed around the shape to remove the excess backing sheet, the aim being to not see the join when we've finished our clean up.
The picture below is of my Works in Progress. I still have finishing up to do on these.
This is giving everyone good grounding in sawing, piercing, filing & soldering as well as introduction to the various workshop tools and equipment.
Next week we'll be starting on some design work - Really look forward to Tuesdays these days :)