I'm in Houston for the week attending Adorn Me! Today was Tool Making with Richard Salley. My roomie Bren and I were both in this class. We're also taking the Repousse without Pitch class taught by Richard tomorrow. The idea is that we use the tools we make today in the class tomorrow. I had a little anxiety about whether I would get some tools made for the class tomorrow. It turned out that making the tools was quicker and easier than I thought it would be. At the same time some things I thought would be easy turned out to be a little tricky. We got to play with power tools! There were several bench grinders with various grind stones and polishing wheels, plus a couple of belt sanders.
Bren and I both agreed that the line tools were easy. I tried a teardrop tool and it was harder. I used a file to cut straight lines across the face of one tool, and deepened the cuts with my saw. This made a 4 line stamp. It was really hard to get the face of this tool squared so it would stamp correctly. It's still not perfect, but it's usable. One clever student in class did a set of tools that make a dragonfly about 3/4 of an inch long when put together.
L. to R.: short line tool, long line tool, square punch, teardrop punch, round planishing, round punch, 4 line stamp.
I also did a curved line. The middle of the line came out a little wider than the ends so it looks a little like a waning moon, or the curved end of a flower petal. I decided I liked it that way so I left it.
Here is Bren with instructor Richard Salley:
We've both taken classes from Richard before. He's an excellent instructor. The class also included hardening and tempering of the tools, and twisting the middle of the tools to give it a decorative spiral and a place to hold it. Bren and I haven't spiraled any of our tools yet.
Susan Lennart Kazmer set up a store right before lunch. Here's a shot of the crowd around their booth. Maybe I'll do a little shopping there this week.