Sunday, July 5, 2015

Remembering Fred Woell

An influential teacher and mentor Fred Woell was someone I had known from his work appearing in books and magazines published in the early '70s.  The use of found objects in jewelry was new to me.  I was familiar with the work of some of the Dadaists and their use of everyday items combined with images to make a statement.  Fred's work was familiar in that sense and his use of objects gave me a great sense of comfort and hominess.  His pieces seemed to tell a story

I met Fred in 1986 while we were both attending the SNAG (Society of North American Goldsmiths) conference in Flagstaff.  We were sitting in one of the lecture halls and he talked to me about current trends in jewelry and metalwork.  I do not recall specifics and was thrilled that he had taken time to talk to me personally.  Years later we met during a workshop taught at the Tucson Parks & Rec center.  I was a treat to hear him talk and to inspire the students to explore the collages that we each made.

My time with Fred Woell was brief and yet I feel his influence and remember his kindness and willingness to share very clearly.

I am providing this link to an article written by a close friend of Fred and myself.

Monday, January 7, 2013


These are a few examples of fibula I have made over the years.
Fibulae offer a wonderful interplay between the body of the brooch and pin stem.

Brass fibula

One of the first designs I created

Simple yet elegant

Sterling fibula

Copper fibula

I love making these

Broad fibula made from heavy stock

I enjoy using texture
One  of my favorites

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Pins for Yuma Symposium 2011

Here is the documentation of the pins I made

 A grouping
I began with an equilateral triangle

I then cut a taper on one side

I turned it over & folded the top
I hammered the fold and forged the taper to match the diameter of the bead hole
The pin is now annealed and the fold is opened.
The ears are bent on the top portion of the pin. A hole is drilled to accept the taper.
A few well placed plateaus are created using LMD (Localized Metal Deformation)
the tie pin back is now soldered onto the back

The bead is threaded through the taper end and then the taper is passed through the hole and bend over securing the bead in place.

The entire pin is placed into a chemical soaked medium and then left there for several hours.The pin is removed and washed and waxed.
The high spots are buffed to exposed and polish the copper. A final waxing and it is ready for the Symposium.

I love creating and viewing process.

I completed 50 pins plus the nine steps shown above.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

I Am Back!

I have decided to renew my commitment to my blogFacebook has pulled me away and I feel this format is more conducive to sharing what I want to say and show.  In the following months I will share some current work and studies.

I am currently teaching two classes in beginning jewelry and metalwork at Central Arizona College at their Signal Peak Campus.  It is a privilege to have this opportunity to influence these students and to help them appreciate what is involved in creating a piece in metal.

I continue to give workshops and further my creative drive for quality.  It will take me a while to get into the swing of updating my blog.  I hope others will find what I have to share interesting.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Pins for Yuma Symposium 2010

Here are a few images of the 80 pins I made to swap with friends at the Yuma Symposium this year. Making this volume requires a different skill set and the processes and designs will frequently appear in my retail work. Each is approximately 1"x1.5" and made of 18 gauge copper sheet with sterling wire and turquoise bead.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Idyllwild "Metals Week" 2010

I feel priviledged to be asked to teach again at Idyllwild this summer. The class I am teaching involves the forging of a neck collar and then the fabrication of a slide/s to be used on the collar.

Idyllwild is located in the San Bernadino Mountains south of Palm springs. It is an inspirational setting for creating. I am looking forward to meeting all the students. I am including the link to the flyer announcing the programs for this year.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Custom Made Chasing Tools on the Web

The processes of repoussage and chasing have long been a passion of mine and I have had the pleasure of teaching several classes on the combined techniques. The availability of well made tools is always an issue when I teach. The first portion of my classes involve the making of appropriate tools for the projects we have scheduled.

This post will look at what is currently available in custom made tools. I have not intentionally omittted anyone from the list and I solicit further entries from anyone making custom chasing and repousse tools.

The order is no indication of preference or the quality of tools.

Valentine Yotkov
Matt Weber
Kirsten Skiles
Genevieve Flynn
Mark Gardner
Gene Olsen
Victoria Landsford
Rene Bluhm-Landsmann
Pauline Warg
Liza Nechamkin
Fabrizio Aquafresa
Saign Charlestein

Hope you find this useful.