Monday, September 7, 2009

My first metalsmithed... item

This month's installation of EtsyMetal's Blog Carnival is: My First Piece of Metalsmithed Jewelry. However, my first metalsmited item wasn't a piece of jewelry, but it really shaped how I work, and I still have it. So here it is!

It was a married metal container. My very first jewelry and metalsmithing class was an Intro to Jewelry and Metals and was open to all art majors.

This piece I can honestly say, scarred me in terms of what aspects of metalsmithing I enjoy. Since I'd never done any sawing, I didn't have a concept of what might be easy or difficult. Not to mention that doing married metal for your first piercing project is no easy task. After it was all said and done, piercing and sawing were now in my list of things I liked least. And seriously, to this day - they are my least favorite things! The dislike of soldering led me to fusing - which if you ready my blog, know that a huge majority of my work is fused, not soldered. I also found ways around sawing when possible, large cutters, metal shears, using the flexshaft, etc.

Often the best learning experiences are the ones that lead you away from something, not necessarily towards! I don't remember doing any kind of practice piece - if I had, I probably wouldn't have chosen this design!

At the time, I thought it turned out pretty well, looking at it now - oh my goodness. And I do look at it just about every day - I use it as a little scrap container! When sawing off little bits of sprues or little ends of wire snips or sheet scraps, I just throw them in there. When I cast, I sprinkle some of the bits out to be recycled. I don't actually use the lid, so I had to hunt for it this morning.

So that is it! My first piece. I think you could say it was a 'doozy'. Married metal - soldered brass and copper, formed in to a sealed container. it was supposed to be water tight - though recently I found where you can see light through one little missed hole. (from the front it looks like there are more than one, but thats just b/c I didn't know how to solder well - who does on their first piece?)

Make sure to check out my other EtsyMetal friends that are participating in this month's blog carnival:

1. Sara Westermark
2. Nina Gibson
3. Danielle Miller-Gilliam
4. Beth Cyr - thats me!
5. duckduckGoose
6. Caitlyn Davey
7. Laura Crawford
8. Tamra Gentry
9. andes cruz -
10. Cynthia Del Giudice:
11. libby Rosas
12. Nina Dinoff
13. Clare Stoker
14. kerin rose
15.Quercus SIlver
16. Delias Thompson


Anonymous said...

that's awesome Beth!
I see I wasn't the only ambitious one :)
I love your container.

elizabethrosasjewelry said...

very cool, I love that you still use them.

Quercus Silver said...

I have a plaited bangle that does the same for me. I loathe twisting bits of wire. However, I love you pot!

Delias Thompson said...

I love that your first piece was sculptural! Great ambition!

Beth Cyr said...

Thanks everyone! I don't know that I would have tried to make that if it hadn't been the assignment. I wonder if my teacher liked to use it as a weeding out process...