Welcome!

Yes, that’s me. My attire for both days represented what I normally wear in the studio, i.e. clothes that more than likely will have holes because of my pickle solution. The apron was something new, it has my logo and name.  I thought that was a nice touch for marketing my brand.  I will save the apron for special occasions like the Open Studio Tour.  Generally I wear a lab coat or a black apron to help protect my clothing.  Dan asked me to ‘strike the greeting pose’ and as you can see I was ready for the day.  Looking forward to seeing people come visit my studio and see where I work, along with offering some of my finished products.

This year’s tour was even better than last. Thanks to the tour founder, Nancy Bonig, I believe the word spread that the artists participating in the tour really wanted to show people what goes into our process. Metalsmithing requires forethought and attention to detail. If I do something in the fabrication of a piece that is done out of order, well, the piece may be lost.

This year I changed the configuration for my staging area.  I set things up in a “L” shape to allow people to sign up for my mailing list, view a couple of my sketch books along with some inspirational books and magazines I read.  One table had some of my finished product for those who would like to become collectors of my work.

I debuted Treescape earrings during the Open Studio weekend.  I found them to be very popular and by the end of the weekend, a number of these were sold.  Thank you to all who liked them enough to buy a pair.  I am working on more and will share some photos in the near future.

I learned a number of things from last year’s tour.  One thing I found to be important was to let people know, as they walked into our home, that my studio was just down the hallway.

Another thing that I did this year was to have more works in progress.  People really enjoyed seeing everything in stages.  It made things so much easier for me to explain how I fabricate pieces.

Some of the metalsmithing techniques I demonstrated were forging, sawing, hand finishing, piercing, and setting a bezel.  This display showed a few of the materials I use in my work, from sheet metal to some of the cabochon varieties to some of the finishing products like liver of sulphur gel.  I also had another sketch book that showed how a finished piece may not look exactly like the original sketch.  This provided a number of talking points and gave a nice overview of start to finish for a given design.

I met so many interesting people this year.  Their interest in metalsmithing generated some fun and fascinating conversations.  It was a great success for me on many levels.  So many commented about how wonderful it was for the tour artists to open their studios for viewing.  I, for one, hope to be a part of the tour again next year.

A number of people wanted to meet my studio mascots and they happily obliged.  The meeting area for the mascots was our back yard.  With people coming and going, that was a much simpler approach for the dog lovers who came to visit.

My studio mascots, Nocturne, Newton & Quorra.

My soul mate Dan was my main assistant, helper & greeter for the weekend.  On Sunday, another friend and fellow metalsmith, Ginny Maiolo, helped.  My thanks to both of you!

Again, I want to thank everyone who stopped to visit.  An extra special thanks to Nancy Bonig for her tireless efforts to promote the artists, their works and  the tour too.

I just wanted to share a few glimpes of what things where like at my studio.  Let’s see what next year holds in store.

Until next time, aspire to be more as an artist and a person.

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