Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Happy Everything!

Well, it's a little late to be saying Happy New Year seeing as we're well into February already.
And we won't mention about the 6 months plus since my last post except for me to say Thank you to my readers for still subscribing to my blog and not culling me from your blog lists when decluttering (Wasn't that everyone's New Year's Resolution?)

After finishing my Cert 2 at Tafe, I was keen to continue on creating at home but last year it just fell by the wayside. My inspiration abandoned me and I was busy at work and at home so it just didn't happen.

Two recent events have changed that! First my husband bought me a great Christmas present (yes, he's a keeper!) - it was a total surprise, and a much appreciated gift - Here it is:

It was hiding in the shed for 2 months. Even though I do go in the shed quite often I never even noticed it hidden down the back among the neglected camping gear! Just goes to show how cluttered the shed was! What a fabulous surprise -  I cried when he took me out to the back garden Christmas morning and it was sitting there with it's big Christmas ribbon around it.  (Ha Ha - tears of joy!!)   No longer do I have to attach my small vice and Bench peg to the Meals Area Table. I now have my own dedicated jewellery bench to hammer, saw and drill and solder. We had to do some rearranging of the spare room and I need to get another power point put in but other than that it's working really well.....and we can use the Meals Area Table for ......well, our meals!

The second event is that I enrolled in another course. Two former Tafe Lecturers have opened up a metal studio. They are running courses, renting out bench space, opening up gallery space, loaning out metalwork books library style  - everything!
I enrolled in the 6 week enamel class which was their very first class. There's so much about this that is good: they are awesome teachers and have created an informal, friendly, practical, well equipped, safe place for us to learn.  Perth people check out the link  - Contemporary Metal Students are very spoilt.

We are covering experimental enamelling techniques in this course, rather than the traditional techniques such as Cloisonne. This suits me as I don't really have the patience for that sort of work. We've covered techniques using Liquid enamels, Sifting, Stencilling, Stamping, decals, & Sgraffito. Pretty much anything we can think of - we're encouraged to try. Some of things the other students have tried were impressing glass beads and fusing them to the work, and impressing ferns & material into the enamel before firing We're churning out lots of sample pieces and having lots of fun. I've made some cool pieces (and a couple of ugly pieces which I'm not showing!) but I'm learning so much and I'm looking forward to firing up the kiln at home when classes are over and playing with it all some more.
 Some of my favourite experiments were with stencilling.


The samples above were made by sifting the powdered enamel through thin acetate stencils. The exception is the bottom left sample where the enamel was sifted directly through a piece of lace ribbon. If you're interested there's more on the stencils and how I made them over on my other Craft blog.

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