Sunday, April 19, 2009

CMAG swap meet

Yesterday I went to the Chicago Metal Arts Guild annual (starting this year) swap meet. It is for buying and selling metal related tools and supplies. I have a lot of duplicate tools and things I never use, so I brought that stuff to sell. I sold a lot of my smaller tools, but did not sell my centrifugal caster or old vacuum caster.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

500 Plastic Jewelry Designs

I found out today that one of my pieces was accepted for the book 500 Plastic Jewelry Designs.
The picture below is the piece that was accepted. I made 3 plastic brooches specifically to enter in the book, the one that was accepted was the only one I liked.

Monday, April 13, 2009

new tools

I made another stake from a railroad spike. I didn't need the stake for anything in particular, I just wanted to make it. The new one is on the right.

I also made myself a chasing hammer this weekend. I have made chasing hammers before, but they were gifts. The handle is ebony, I roughed it out on the band saw then finished shaping it on the belt sander. This time I fit the handle to the head early on during the shaping of the handle rather than finishing the handle first. I think it is easier to do it this way because I don't need to worry as much about getting the head on straight or worry about breaking the handle when I hammer it into the head.

I thought I might be finished when I took the picture below, but I couldn't stand that light spot in the ebony so I sanded it out the next day. I will post a photo of the finished piece soon.

2009 Cheongju International Craft Competition

The entry form for the Cheongju International Craft Competition is online. It may have been up for a while now, but this is the first time I have checked the site in a few months.

There's no entry fee and big prizes, plus they bring you to Korea if you win. And they pay the awards in cash. It's crazy.

Here are links to the competition information, and the main Cheongju Craft Biennale site. Entries are due June 22nd.

Me at Cheongju in 2007:

Thursday, April 2, 2009

anodizing dyes

I finished my anodizing sample pieces last night and I took a photo of all the colors I have. All of these dyes are from and these are the names they use for the colors.

Most of the colors are accurate on my calibrated monitor, but a few of them don't look so good in this photo.

1- Red Bordeaux (below) - I like this one if the piece is dyed as dark as possible. But I rarely use it on my work.

2- Violet DS + Red Bor. (1:1) - I mixed this color, I don't like it.

3- Violet DS + Red Bor. (2:1) - I don't like this one either.

4- Violet DS (below) - It's ok, but I rarely use it.

5- Violet - This is one of the new ones I got a couple weeks ago. I haven't used it on any of my work yet. I am not sure if I will, it's kind of strong.

6- Black - It's black. What more can I say?

7- Copper - Another new one. This is the orange I have been looking for. I haven't used it yet.

8- Orange 3A - I never liked this one much.

9- Golden Orange - A new one. It's better than orange 3A, although I don't know if I will use it on my work.

10- Yellow 4A - Another new one. This one is very interesting. It's a very light yellow, I have not used it yet, but I am considering it for this brooch. I will definitely use it on something.

11- Gray NLN - A new one. It's kind of like black, but not as... black. I didn't know what to expect with this one, but I was hoping it would be something other than watered down black. I could get this color with a quick dip in the black dye. Maybe that should have been obvious, but I figured if they are selling a separate dye it must be something I couldn't get with black. If you leave the piece in the dye long enough it is almost black. Interestingly, this isn't the only gray they sell.

12- Orange 3A + Blue 4A (2:1) - Another one I mixed. I didn't have yellow to mix with blue, so I wanted to see what kind of green I would get with orange and blue. It's an ugly color, I've never used it.

13- Electric Blue (below) - I like this one. I bought this after I already had fast blue, but two are too similar to each other, I didn't need both of them.

14- Fast Blue (2 photos below) - I like this one a lot. I used this on my teapot.
Both of these rings are fast blue.

15- Blue 4A (2 photos below) - This is my favorite blue right now.

16- Green SCG - This one is new. I like it but I have not used it on anything yet.

17- Green AEN (below) - This one is kind of difficult to get a good color. When the color comes out right, like with this brooch, I love it. When it doesn't come out right it's nothing special.

18- Blue 4A + Orange 3A (1:1) - I mixed this at the same time I mixed #12. I don't like it.

wood handled picks

I have been making some more wood handled lock picks lately, but most people are still asking for aluminum handles. I am a little sick of the aluminum handled ones, but I am not going to turn down the work. Wood is so fast and easy to work compared to metal. I got some new wood 2 weeks ago and have more wood coming this week.

This is one of my favorites. The wood is holly. I didn't have an order for this one, I just wanted to try working with the holly.