I usually begin each piece by making a pencil sketch of the design. It is then hand formed in Precious Metal Clay (PMC) using a variety of techniques, including sculpting, carving and molds many constructed from found objects. Several of my designs incorporate fused glass and other gemstones that can endure the high temperatures of kiln firing. Once the design is formed in PMC, it is dried and further refined before it is fired in a kiln. [blockquote type="blockquote_quotes" align="right"]Art washes from the soul the dust of everyday life
– Pablo Picasso[/blockquote]
Other gems and stones can be set after the piece is complete using traditional metalsmithing techniques. The fine silver piece is finished by polishing and tumbling. The final step is to apply an organic oxidation solution of LOS, liver of sulfur, to add a wonderful patina. Each piece is a one-of-a-kind creation with its own unique characteristics.
What is PMC?
Precious Metal Clay, PMC, is a combination of organic binders, water, and microscopic particles of gold or silver from recycled metals. In recent years other base metal clays like bronze, copper, brass and steel have become available. As a malleable material, it is formed into a desired shape and then fired in a kiln to remove the binder and fuse into solid metal. The result is a pure metal that can be hallmarked as .999 fine silver or 22/24 karat gold. PMC was first developed by Mitsubishi Corporation of Japan in the mid-nineties.
I was excited to be part of a collaboration project with 3 other artists where we each interpreted a source of inspiration in our own medium. My woodcarving bracelet was created by a fellow artist’s choice of a woodcarving her mother had made many years ago. I began by sketching the carving in a 3” scale model. I then used many techniques to transfer and carve the drawing into a bracelet. This new texture has now become a favorite to use in several designs.
See the woodcarving project .