Monday, June 29, 2015

Colouring on metal - Enamels

I've taught a class in the past that reviews the many ways you can colour metal: inks, paints, nail polish, pastes, flame and on and on. Recently I went back to enamelling and fell in love with it, and the possibilities this technique offers, all over again. 

I'm looking forward to offering some new enamelling classes at BeadFX in the coming months that feature new ways to add texture and interest to your pieces using enamels. Watch for that info on the classes pages of This weekend, July 4, I'm teaching a beginner enamelling class. Learn the various methods for preparing your metal, sifting and firing and the many effects you can achieve. On the web site, Steven James has some great free tutorials on enamelling.

I took a class on creating a raku effect on copper using enamel with Steven. I adore raku pottery, so this was a revelation for this girl who loves playing with metal! I've created some pretty pendants that are easy to make. Come out to BeadFX on July 25 as I debut a class using this new take on a traditional technique. You'll love the coppery colours that flame brings out in the glass. 

And wow! I finally learned how exciting it can be to colour with flames and enamel using the Barbara Lewis method. What frustration and, eventually, fun I had. This technique is not for the faint of heart. Here's a picture of my station set up in Debora Mauser's class at Bead and Button. 

Flame and enamel can create some very beautiful results. Making coloured head pins, coating filigree beads and then learning the secrets to enamelling large, flat pieces then adding frit and other glass inclusions, really opened up a new palette to paint my dreams on metal. Can't wait to finalize designs for a fall class showcasing this. But this class will be for those with some enamelling experience under their belt. So please take a beginner class beforehand: you'll have fun and open up new design possibilities in your work. 

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