Monday, May 24, 2010

ASOM day to learn to enameling

One of my personal goals this year was to take more classes and workshops, to try new things and learn from those who really know what they're doing.

This weekend the Altered States of Mind group met with my friend Joanna of the Bellevue Beadery to learn how to enamel on copper. Joanna is so giving with her knowledge, she spent 6 hours showing us the ropes and answering all of our questions. While at the Thompson Enameling studio we had access to the equipment, the colors, the kilns, and a great selection of copper pieces.

This was a my favorite design of the day... a matte white enameled oval with cobalt blue stenciled on top.


I learned enamel can be fickle..my first piece of the day was the circle (below). It started out as mocha brown but when I fired it the second time to add the orange the brown turned a shade of grey. The heart was also fired twice, once to bake the blue background and then glass stringers to create the colored lines.
We learned about transparent enamels (on the left) and my personal favorite- opaque enamels (right).
All of Thompson's enamels are lead-free so I am completely comfortable turning these pieces into jewelry.

There area number of safety lessons to learn since you are dealing with glass powders and a 1475 degree kiln, but the whole process of choosing the copper, picking the colors, and varieties of enamel is very rewarding.

Angie

3 comments:

Dorthe said...

Hi Angie,
How lucky you are, being able to take lessons like this one.
It looks so inspirering and exiting, to work with.
Love the pieces you made for jewelry, -are you showing us ,how you finishes them up.??
xo Dorthe

CosmoGirl Carla said...

Wow! Gorgeous pieces, Angie. Sounds/looks like you had a great session.

Oh, and now I'm rethinking my whole take on the Lost finale. Oye!!! Me and DS were discussing it more yesterday comparing our notes AND yours! Hubby was just rolling his eyes . . . ;o) Thanks for your insights and interpretations on the story!

Christine Edwards said...

Hee, Hee! I'm doing an enameling class at Bead and Button in a couple of weeks. So, you can probably expect some enamel in my Steampunk charms. ;-) The necklace came over the weekend! I'm absolutely thrilled with it...and I had no idea I was your first Etsy sale. Thanks!