Thursday, March 10, 2011

Day Three at Adorn Me Part A: Creating Hollow Forms in Color

Thursday was Creating Hollow Forms in Color with Susan Lenart Kazmer.  This was the first time I had done any enameling.

After some instruction from Susan I attempted counter enameling of my copper domes.  Counter enameling is the enamel put on the back of the piece.  It's intended to strengthen the piece so it doesn't get bent later, causing glass to pop off. 

The biggest problem I had with this was dropping the little pieces before I got them to the torch.   I did finally get the backs torch enameled. 

The line for the torches was long so I switched to the kiln for the fronts.  I experimented with various colors and  also enameled a key, and the tips of some copper wires. The copper wires were done with the torch. It's a lot of fun seeing the colors pop out after firing.  At first everything is dark but when it cools, or after you quench it, the color shows. The color on the enamels can change with each firing.  The brown looking piece is supposed to be Victorian Red.  The backs of the domes, in particular, would have benifited from additional firings if I'd had more time. Each piece was fired twice, except for the wires which were fired 4 or 5 times each.

Here's my completed piece:

enameled necklace

You can see I had a little trouble getting the enamel out to the edges of the copper. I'm definitely going to be ordering some enamels so I can work on the technique.

Bren, meanwhile, was in Keith Lo Bue's Weathering and Distressing class learning how to make things look old.  She came back with some boxes with handmade wire clasps on them, distressed down to the wormholes.

Up next:  Part B: Band Groupie with Melissa Manley.

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