Thoughts while brushing my hair

May 12, 2014

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I took this selfie yesterday and sent it to R who said I looked pensive. Actually, to tell the truth, I only took it because I was wearing R’s beautiful watch, but I guess I do look pensive. 😀

So this evening, after a day of gym, gardening, serious work saving plants form a neighbourhood construction site, and silversmithing work in the studio, I stood in front of my bathroom mirror trying to brush out the rat’s nest that my hair manages to become by the end of the day and rubbing a good dollop of coconut oil into it as a rescue remedy, and I though, you know what? This relationship I’m trying to forge with metal and flame is bloody hard!

I guess it’s all still so relatively new.

studio treasures

I know my failures though, so that’s a start. First thing is that I’m too impatient to cut the shapes, and also to be economical with the silver, and don’t take my time around the shapes I want to have. Then the filing never somehow gets the edges perfectly smooth and the shape, while organic, doesn’t have the pro look I want. The second thing is that I’m not controlling the flame very well, and the solder isn’t flowing as well as it should be, causing all sots of bumps on what should be a smooth surface.

studio

But I’ve managed to do something so silly this time, you’ll just laugh.

One time, I painted a painting of fire. A friend and fellow artist was studying it and I asked him what he was seeing. He said he wouldn’t tell me what it was because as soon as he did I wouldn’t ever not be able to see it.

I begged him to and he pointed out four dragon heads I painted into the flame. It’s true though, from then on I always see the dragon heads in the fire.

So sometimes these design mistakes are fine and even make the design lovelier, or more fantastical as with the case of the dragons, but sometimes it’s just so silly, you have to wonder what the hell you were thinking.

I had it in mind to make a necklace. I was going to figure out some techniques, like melting silver on the fire brick into perfect little spheres and soldering them on beside a polished pebble. So the melting and the ball-ing procedure went well, the cutting out of the background for the necklace was ok-ish, but still passable, and then the soldering began and first I managed to roll the balls off the flat plate, then run out of butane in my torch, then, after filling it, I managed to solder everything together but move the bezel cup with the piece of solder so there wasn’t enough room to pierce the metal for the chain, and accidentally roll one of the silver balls onto the underneath of the plate, soldering it into place there and had to detach it and get it back into the place I wanted. Then in the pickle and wait, then polish and polish and polish and file and file and file and polish some more and still there are lumps and bumps and unevenness galore.

And, if that’s not enough, Ladies and gentlemen, I give you “The Scream” oh yes. Lol, design mistake 101! What am I like?

Oh well, at least I’m getting better at the simple round bands.

By the way, there’s no “manicure” in silversmithing! 😀

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Home, lately
a day in the studio

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6 Comments

  • Reply daryledelstein May 13, 2014 at 8:53 am

    i see two approaches to this: learn by trial and error or take more classes progressing from a crawl to a walk to a run

    • Reply Veronica May 16, 2014 at 6:01 pm

      I know! I think I chose trial and error. It’s virtually impossible to find a silversmith teacher in or near Van. Who knew!?! Anyway, I really should know better than this. 😀 Good for a laugh though.

  • Reply mysoulfulhome May 13, 2014 at 5:26 pm

    You’ll get it – my bet is you always do. And in trying you will make some “mistakes” that are really gorgeous strokes of accidental brilliance. That’s the kind of gal you are after all…xx

    • Reply Veronica May 16, 2014 at 5:37 pm

      Thank you so much Kelly. It’s lovely of you to give me this wonderful gift of encouragement. 😀

  • Reply Joanne May 15, 2014 at 9:42 am

    This makes me smile, because it sounds just like me and metal four years ago….
    Wow – I cant believe it’s been that long already!
    Do yourself the biggest favour Veronica and exchange that puny blowtorch for one from your hardware store.
    You will not regret it 🙂
    It all takes time, and you are making some amazing pieces already – dont give up!
    Hugs
    xx

    • Reply Veronica May 16, 2014 at 5:33 pm

      Aw, thanks so much sweetie. Right, puny blow torch is going back in the kitchen where it belongs. 😀 No more toys instead of tools. X

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