Learning a New Craft

I had my first enameling class last night. It was boss. The class was very small but not too small to not have a crazy middle-aged woman wearing a dog-haired covered sweatshirt and taped-together dollar store reading glasses. She answered her cell phone in class within five minutes, hung up and said, “That was my son – he is a glass maker – he would know how to do this stuff.” She got back on the phone with him later – but I suspect she was checking in with whatever nurse let her out of the funny farm for the night. She also asked the instructor all kinds of made-up technical questions like, “Is that gauge the C90P One Thousand?” and whenever the other students and I made a mildly witty comment she said, “That is FUNNY.”

Eventually she shut up when the blow torches came out and I was able to get down to business. The first lesson was all about making enamel samples and learning the basics. It is very fun to watch powder turn to molten glass. And this is how you do it (minus pics of the blow torch because at that point I had my hands full):

First you get your stuff:


Then you put some enamel powder on some metal:


Maybe scrape it up to funk it up:


Then cook it with a torch:


Wait a bit to let the color come out, scrub it up, and torch a clear coat over it and wah-lah!


I call this the Wesley Snipes sample because it reminds me of the movie “Rising Sun” that he was in.

All of the rest of my samples reminded me of the 70s. There is something about copper that says seventies, no?

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