Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Doming, Dapping, Daydreams and Danger

I was trying to work on some tutorials for today and was struggling to get through them. Just one of those days. So, I decided to try my hand at dapping. I bought a dapping set when I set up the shop in the caboose, but I haven't really played with them yet. I also bought a shear. So I played with both today.

First, I made a set of domed and hammered copper earrings. I wanted them to sit properlyon the ear, so I had to make a back for them. First, I took copper discs and dapped them (using the steel block and dapping heads). The challenge was adding the hammered texture AFTER they were dapped, since they loose the texture while they are being dapped if you do it beforehand. I managed though. Then I had to figure out the back. I remembered a pair of earrings I had many, many, many years ago in college -- they were huge-- and I did the back in a similar manner. They work! *Dancing with joy.*
No, I won't share how-- I am going to write a tutorial, so I can't share all my secrets just yet. ;)
Next I used the shear to cut a rough circle out of sterling sheet. I left it somewhat rough, for an organic look. Then I domed it with the dapping set as well. I had a strip of fired bronzclay on my bench, waiting for a use, so I formed it around a ring mandrel, leaving it partially open. I hammered the INSIDE of the circle (not as hard as the outside of one that has already been domed) to represent starlight. Then I placed a small flat circle of fired bronzclay in the ring, off to the side, to represent the moon. I call it "Moon and Stars." The outside of the sterling dome portion is textured to match the texture on the outside of the ring shank. I want it to be something people can stare into and think of a starry, moonlit night when all their dreams came true.

One of my favorite things to do is sit on the hill behind my house, watching the moon and the stars (after the glorious sunsets of course). After all the rain we have been having, I have to load up with bug spray first though -- we are growing a great crop of mosquitoes in the Nebraska Sandhills this year after all of the rain we have been having.

I have a "Sunset Moon" ring in my head now, so I may come up with a design for it soon.

Tomorrow is our annual open show at the local art gallery, so I may enter my "Lakeside Idyll" pendant that went to the state show earlier this year -- and "almost" won an award. It was good to hear it was up for consideration, but an actual award would have been even nicer, LOL.

I am also entering a few photos -- one of a soapweed that I took closeup, another of the handle on the old machine shed on the hill, and one of some used horseshoes hanging on the fence at my in-laws.

We had some tornados the other night, and I got some funnel cloud photos. I was actually driving alongside one -- which was nerve wracking even though I knew it was a ways away. I don't know if I will enter any of them or not. However, later that night I also got some photos of the storm clouds and the sunset, complete with the full moon and our barn. I did a mixed media piece from one of those photos that I also plan to enter. No photos of it yet.

So, wish me luck -- I could use some positive feedback -- it has been a rough few months.

On the other hand we have a new house -- in the country, with lots of space and awesome views! I even have room for my own studio at home -- a far cry from a 40-year-old 2-BR trailer, I am happy to say! :) *Dancing with joy again.*

The Lord is so good to me! :)

Happy Creating!