Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Fun With Enameling

I had my third enameling class today and I'm really enjoying this craft. Painting with the glass powder is so relaxing and the pieces look so pretty. Our teacher showed us some of her work and it's amazing.

I spent most of today's class cutting out ovals and other shapes so that I can make some enameled pendants. This required a lot of cutting and filing, and drilling, etc., all of which I feel pretty comfortable doing, but the teacher kind of treated us all as if we'd never done it before. I think she's caught on to the fact that I'm a big, 'ol klutz -- I do have her for two classes, after all -- so she's keep doing stuff for me. I think she's a really great teacher, but I do wish she'd let me handle some more things, even if I do mess up. I guess my ideal teacher is someone who lets us fend for ourselves, but is patient and willing to take questions without making you feel stupid. I'm not sure if this person exists, but this teacher is really cool for the most part.

Anyway, I managed to make three sort of ovals and some long, abstract shapes. As my teacher said, they're "free form." I have some ideas for how I'll enamel them, though, and I think they'll look pretty. The idea is to do a bunch of different techniques so these should take me through the end of the semester. As I complete each piece, I'll post photos.

I got a taste of how hot the 1500 degree kiln is when I very stupidly grabbed the red hot tray right after it came out of the oven. Ouch-y-mama! God damn, did it hurt! Luckily, I had enough sense to immediately drop the tray ("Fire hot! Duh!") and my finger wasn't too badly burned -- just a couple of blisters. My teacher grabbed me a piece of aloe plant and wrapped the soothing leaf around my finger. Now it barely hurts at all. I suppose this kind of accident happens often in enameling if she's keeping an actual aloe plant on hand!

Injury aside, I had a good class and wish it were longer than 2 1/2 hours. I can't wait until next week when I'll get to put more time into my enameled jewelry. I adore making wire jewelry, but enameling could end up being my favorite thing to do.

To purchase my jewelry, head to Naomi's Designs.

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