Monday, February 28, 2011

Memories of Summer Workshop

Here are a few photos from the workshop I taught over this past weekend. You can see all of the photos on my Facebook page. The workshop is called "Memories of Summer" and it teaches basic wire wrapping of found objects. Some students brought their own items to wrap and some used items from my supply box. Either way all the finished pieces came out great! I teach this workshop at Creative Genius Art Gallery and Studio in Medford, NJ. You can see more info on all my workshops and info on when the next "Memories of Summer" workshop will be offered here.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

RAW # 8 (ring of the week)

Plan A for this week's ring didn't actually work out so well as a ring so I had to go with Plan B.

Plan A was to make something like this:

While I can totally understand this drawing, you probably have no clue what it means so let me explain....The center teardrop is a stone. It has four little wires or "legs" coming off of it with little circles at the end (more stones). The "legs" are attached to another teardrop made of wire that the little stones sit on. When finished it will look kind of like the large stone is suspended inside the wire teardrop. It came together perfectly but before putting on the band it started to look more and more like a pendant to me. It took me about a half an hour of going back and forth between a ring and a pendant before I finally made the call. Looking at the photo below you can see what I decided.

So then I needed to go to Plan B.... I have been playing around with some new die shapes I have made for my hydraulic press. Since I had a bunch of copper pieces laying around on my bench that I used to test out my dies, I figured that would be a good place to start. This is what I came up with:

It kind of reminds me of a ravioli...hhmmm...I think I just found it's name :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

my inspiration for participating in "RAW"

Some of the artists participating in the "RAW (ring a week) challenge" (including me) have decided to do a blog carnival. A blog carnival is where a group of people pick a subject, blog about it then post it with links to all the other blogs that are participating.

The subject of this blog carnival is "What was your inspiration for participating in RAW?"

My inspiration for participating in the RAW challenge was actually the "RAD" (ring a day) challenge. The challenge was to make a ring a day every day for the year 2010 ending up with 365 rings by Dec 31. I came across this challenge by accident while surfing the web. I thought this was the greatest idea and would have loved to participate but I didn't find out about the challenge until day 115 so I would have been quite a bit behind. I would check in on the challenge every so often to see what was new. There were some really great rings that have been made. On Jan 5, 2011 I checked in on RAD to see all the completed work for the year and that's when I saw the post about a new challenge for 2011. There was still a couple days left in the first week of January so I decided to jump in! I am such a ring person. I love making and wearing them, and the bigger the better if you ask me! I also have been in a creative funk lately so I thought this would be a great way to challenge myself and get the creative juices flowing. I figured I could use techniques that I don't get to use very often and maybe teach myself a thing or two along the way.

So far I LOVE it! I am 7 rings in and have used 3 of the many techniques I plan to incorporate into my RAW rings. I want to give my RAW rings lots of dimension and texture so I have made hollow forms, I hand carved carved ebony and I have incorporated hinges into my pieces. I have even made my more simpler rings more interesting than I have in the past by adding curves and texture to them and I am very pleased with the look of them. I would like to try to combine some of the harder techniques I haven't used yet and possibly use them in 1 ring. It will either turn out awesome or end up in the scrap box but I won't know unless I try! So keep an eye out for my future RAW rings!

To read more about other artists inspiration for participating check out the blogs below!

Marcie Abney -

Joanne Harrill -

Thomasin Durgin -

Amy Nicole -

Janice -

Aleksandra Micic -

Lana Chu -

Evelyn Markasky -

Kerry Alice-Twigs and Heather -

Lorena Angulo-

Kate Jones--

Maria Apostolou-

Sarah Small -

Rebecca Bogan -

Elaine Luther -

Rebekah Timlin Meddles -

Laura M (Zoeowyn)-

Kimberly (bahamadawn) -

Erin Austin -

Catherine Witherell -

Joan Furilla -

Kathryn Cole-

Thursday, February 17, 2011

RAW #7 (ring a week)

Better late than never is what I always say! This week's ring isn't as involved as my last one but I am running out of time in the week and wanted to get a ring in today so I can keep on schedule. I didn't really have an idea for my ring ( I've been really busy with other stuff and haven't had time to think about it) so I looked through my stash of stones and found this Plume Agate that I have had for quite a while....years actually....So I pulled it out and before you know it it became a ring!

Students work

Here is another piece that one of my students finished this session. It's a sterling silver and Mohave Turquoise cuff bracelet. Way to go Rachel!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

My EtsyMetal mentor...

I recently became a member of the EtsyMetal Team . It is a group of silversmiths, goldsmiths and metalsmiths from all over the world. You have to be juried into the group and members of the team work together to promote each other, their shops and the team. Once you are a member of the team you are paired up with a mentor. Your mentor is there to answer any questions you might have and to help you get a feel for your way around the group pages, forums, etc. My mentor is Shae from citizenobjects. She makes some really cool sculptures, belt buckles and jewelry mostly from found objects. My favorite is her deer head trophy. I think it's really amazing and would love to have it hanging in my house! I also like her souvenir penny jewelry ....probably because it brings back memories of one of my favorite vacations :)

So anyway, next time you are on Etsy type in "EtsyMetal" into the handmade search and check out some of the great work by other talented artists who do some amazing things with metal!

Shae's deer head trpohy which I love!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

RAW # 6 (ring a week)

Well, I finally did it! I finally made a ring that opens. I have always wanted to make a container type ring but never really had the time or should I say I never really gave myself the time to do so. By committing to participate in RAW the year I have had to force myself to set aside time each week to work on my projects. So here we are 6 weeks into RAW and I finally had a plan as to how I was going to make the ring. The shape actually came to me while watching the "Super Bowl" on Sunday night. That being said, I'm sure you can guess what the shape is before even looking at the photos below! The ring is made from sterling silver and set with an iolite stone. It has been roll printed, hydraulic pressed, soldered and oxidized before the stone was bezel set.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Students work

A few of my students finished some new projects this week and they turned out really great! Can you believe they have only been taking classes for a few months?

Roxanne's sterling silver and citrine ring

Rachel's sterling & black onyx pendant and her sterling silver wire pendant

RAW #5 (Ring a Week)

This week for my RAW challenge ring I wanted to make a container ring (also called a poison ring). I knew I wanted to make a ring that opened but due to my busy schedule and lack of ideas for what the ring should look like, I decided that I would keep it simple this week. I ended up messing around in the studio and came up with these "saucer rings" instead. Each one has been textured via the rolling mill and then shaped with a slight curve or dome giving them their saucer shape. Each ring is finished by setting them with 3 semi precious stones. I am pretty happy with the design and probably will tweak them a bit and then add them to my production line.

the rings are set with lapis, peridot and amythyst stones

Interview featuring me...

And I totally forgot to post about it! My interview was posted on the Jewelry Observer website on Jan 28 so I am only about 5 days behind :) .....Check out my interview and interviews with other talented jewelry artists on their site!
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