Sunday, September 26, 2010

This week in the Studio

I give you this week's big learning experience:

Yes, that's a hole in the top of my bench.  The lesson here is that an Ikea hollow-core desktop is not designed to withstand a disc-cutter being pounded directly on the surface.  That's right, kids.  I went straight through the copper and into the desk.  I've got a rubber cutting mat laid in that area now, and the disc-cutter doesn't seem to bother it at all.

Now, to counter that particular crowning moment of oops, I give you this week's crowning moment of awesome.  2 of them, actually, both having to do with my "Different Worlds" series of enamel pieces.
First, I managed to get some weather detail on one of the blue planet pendants.

Stormy Weather #1
Secondly, I've started doing moons, too
Full Moon #2
This one got featured in an Etsy treasury, which was pretty awesome because it meant someone a) saw it, and b) liked it enough to tell others.  Now if only someone would like something enough to buy it...

Sunday, September 19, 2010

In the Beginning...

I know, not a terribly creative title.  Take it as a warning.  Words are not my strong suit, so there will be a lot of pictures here: pictures of finished jewelry pieces (both for sale and not), pictures of work in progress, pictures of inspiring things, pictures of my sketchbook, and probably the occasional picture of things that just made me laugh (or think).  I think we'll start with my studio setup.

This is my studio.  It's in a building run by an outfit called ActivSpace that rents out small craft/hobby/business spaces on a monthly basis.  I'm in a section of the building officially known as "Potter's Alley," but I just call it the "heavy industry district" since these units come with 2 kinds of built in ventilation and 220v electrical outlets.  Most of my neighbors are, in fact, potters, but I know there's at least one screen-printer down the hall.  It's got like 12ft ceilings and a concrete floor, and was a cold white box when I moved in about a month ago.  The lovely cafe au lait color on the walls was something I picked up from the mis-tint section of my favorite paint store for $5 for the gallon.  What you're looking at here is the half of the room containing my bench, solder station to the left of that, the pickle & patina area on the far left (there is a vent fan directly above), and to the right is the great big rolling tool chest with my laptop on top (mostly used as a jukebox, since I don't have internet in the studio yet).  The white patch on the back wall is a piece of clear mylar (that I hadn't pulled the tissue off of yet) that I stuck to the wall to make an instant dry-erase board.
This is the half of the room containing the storage shelves/enamel station and, in the back where you can't really see it, a utility sink.
This is my bench, in it's usual state of disarray.  In my defense, I took this picture midday, and I try to always tidy up before I leave in the evenings.
This is my enamel station.  It's on a set of Ikea Ivar shelves, and the adjustability and solid-wood-ness is wonderful.  I've been doing my enamel sample board of all the colors that came in the complete palette sample pack from Thompson Enamel by doing the sample on copper strips, sticking lightweight magnets on the back, and hanging them on an expanded steel sheet that I've hung from the back of the bench.

So, that's the studio.  Maybe next time I'll talk a little more about myself.  For now, I'll finish up with a pic of something I'd like to sell, but don't know If I ever will.
Hammered sterling silver necklace and post earrings, set with a whole lot of 4mm peridots.