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The Bench Exchange


#1

I thought our Orchid community might enjoy seeing this offline email
I received.

I replied and expressed what an awesome community we have here at
Orchid…

All the best, Dave

Hi Just a note to thank you for the idea you presented on The Orchid
Jewelry Site with the pictures and bios of various artists. Today as
I sat brainstorming about what to do with the dental lab, fully
equiped with most of the equipment to make jewelry that is located in
my home, I surfed onto the site and feel like I may have “struck
gold”. From 1991-2001 I operated a very successful crown and bridge
and ceramics dental lab. Late in 2001 the dentist that I did the
majority of my work with got a divorce and suddenly sold his practice
and went to work at Eli Lily Pharmsuticals in Indianapolis. It left
me fully unprepared and burned out. The past two years has led me
into a new job in the human resources department of a large hospital,
but I really miss the creative aspect of my work. when I ran the
dental lab, I always said I was going to delve into jewelry design
and fabrication, but deadlines and family obligations seemed to fill
up 24 hours per day.

To make a long story short…the postings of bench pictures
encourages me that there is a group of real people out there who are
more concerned in creation and expression than in the techno babble
of dental industry. The people I see on those pictures are not afraid
to expose their independent comfort zones where the spirit inside is
released to soar! Tell me more of how I might begin to utilaize my
skills and ideas to create some metalwork. Any communications to this
are appriciated. I feel like I have opened a door and am about to
enter a new land! Thanks, Beth Baker


#2

Beth, the Indianapolis Art Center offers a variety of jewelry making
classes. Classes start the second week in June and most will run for
eighth weeks. Fall and Spring terms are fifteen weeks. I teach a
class on Tuesday nights 7-10:00. I don’t think that anyone is
teaching casting at the moment which might not suit you. I have
always thought that students should learn fabrication and hammer
techniques and then move into casting if they want. Design and
functionality underlie it all. After basic things like soldering are
learned, I pretty much teach one on one and am more than willing to
talk design with someone who is doing waxes and casting on their own.

IAC 317-255-2464 and wwwindplsartcenter.org

Marilyn Smith


#3
    I have always thought that students should learn fabrication
and hammer techniques and then move into casting if they want.
Design and functionality underlie it all. 

I agree absolutely.Much of my wax work is informed by my fabrication
experience. I learned to carve pieces that people swore were
fabricated and gained enough control to execute more sculptural
pieces with a higher degree of control, so that the finished piece
is determined by the vision, not happenstance.

Spike Cornelius
Portland, Or.
RC ArtMetal