When I get in to this mode I become the “Swirl Girl” (thanks to a friend - Janel - naming me that when I get like this). Kind of a like a whirling dervish but I go in straight lines. Straight lines to bead stores, classes, book stores, computers, tool stores, and the list goes on. I travel to any place that has something that I need (okay you probably got me there – want!). Maybe what’s needed here in a conga line of all of us “artistics” floating into each and every store around the country. Just yell up the line, “Hey up there, pass me down a few sticks of that new color glass.” Close your eyes and just think about it…a long snaking sandbagging type line, everyone’s arms raised, passing this forward and that back. A wonderful fantasy…except that probably Mike Frantz (our glass supplier) is at the end of the line collecting the money for all of it. Shucks! But you ‘gotta make a living and I love the glass. Keep going to Italy Mike…can I hide in the luggage?
Swirl girl has also taken two more classes. Yup, TWO! One class with JJ Masuda, aka “metal master”, in working with Pewter and one with Cindy Moore “wire weaving queen”, on making unique dies for the hydraulics.
Pewter is dirty, melts and hammers easily and is cheap. I am liking the cheap part very very much. I love working in silver but the cost had been deafening and I’d like to offer some pewter pieces. It was a hoot to do and I will need some practice and to learn something about molding materials for duplicates but it’s a possibility. I already work in wax so concept isn’t an issue; techniques are, and they’re conquerable. There is a picture here of what I did in the class, NOT MUCH! But I learned to raise a bowl and how to melt, solder, and pour the metal. Like I said, looking for technique here right now and not necessarily prime results. Those will come.
I made dies for the hydraulic press with both JJ and Jack Berry but Cindy makes a different type of die. Her large welded steel die bends rods of metal which are then arranged on a new die plate and soldered on. Then these plates, whose rods can be arranged in an infinite number of patterns, are then used in the press to give you your patterned metal material to work with. There are lots of possibilities here too.
I’ve included some photos of what I’ve been doing since sometimes my descriptions can be as clear as mud when I am excited and swirling. Top if off with new listings on Etsy and new tools to work with and find studio room for and I’m “winding down” in a BIG way.
That’s about all for this installment of “swirl girl goes wild”. Except for including a photo of my recent haul!