Written by Gail and Carl PittsOn the weekend of October 10-11 Jonna Faulkner visited Tucson to teach her metal clay workshop. The workshop was held at the Every Voice in Action Foundation facility located at 2851 N. Country Club Road in Tucson. The Foundation provides their meeting space, free of charge, to non-profit organizations such as ADC. Our thanks to the Foundation for letting us use the facility.
She presented two of her bracelets that are shown in these photos to illustrate the many techniques that the students would use to create panels and join them together to create their own bracelets.
Jonna had the students try on her bracelets to check for fit and estimate the size and number of the panels they would need for their bracelets.
She demonstrated applying textures to the metal clay. In this photo we see her showing how to use a plastic deodorant dispenser to layout and curve the panels for the bracelet.
Jonna talked about the methods for setting stones that can be fired with the art clay. She cautioned that very few natural stones can be set using this method. These photos show Jonna’s demonstration pieces and a student’s panels that used this method for setting their stones. She also cautioned that, because pearls are delicate, prone to breaking or scratching and cannot be subjected to heat, they should be added to a piece as the last step.
This piece shows how silver bezel cups were added to the panels 2,3,7 and 10 so that natural stones could be set after the panels had been fired. This piece also illustrates a bracelet that was created with a continuing theme.
She demonstrated using small molds to create shapes such as flowers, leaves and geometric designs and using a syringe to create vines, barnacles and filigree. The photo above shows examples of panels created using these techniques. It also shows how the clay can be textured to create a pleasing background.
Jonna showed the class how to apply Keum Boo, an ancient Korean method used to bond thin sheets of gold to silver. This picture shows several panels of a bracelet that have been gilded using this technique.
Jonna told us that students often find that panels that have been fired don’t have the right curvature. One of the nice features of metal clay is that it can still be gently shaped after firing. In this photo she is using the head of a Delrin hammer and a swage block to reshape a bracelet panel.
In this photo Jonna is showing us how to lay out the finished panels and measure them for drilling so that the bracelet can be assembled. Once the bracelet is assembled a patina can be added using liver of sulphur or highlighted with a burnisher or in a tumbler.
Time ran out before most of the students finished their bracelets so there was some homework to be done. Here is one example of a finished bracelet. I hope other class participants will provide photos of their bracelets to be added to the ADC Photo Gallery. Thank you Jonna for a great weekend and for sharing you tchniques with us.