Pages From My Sketchbook

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I don't sketch, ever! Ok, sometimes. But those ideas that I sketch, never actually make it into a real thing. It seems that once I sketch it, I got it out of my system and don't have any desire to work on it anymore. So therefore it's better I just don't sketch. Like these ideas for new rings:

Idea for a wavy, fluid ring design with a pear shaped blue topaz. The sketch still hangs on my black board month after I sketched. Still never worked on making it into a wax model or even cast in metal.

Elaborate design for fused gold on sterling silver with garnet sparkle. 

I am more productive without sketching. I do brood over new design in my head for days or weeks before actually trying to model them. I sometimes have a vague image in my head and then just start with a new piece of wax and just carve it out there. Once I get into carving the design changes a bit, which is good. I find new ideas when I model in wax. It's as if there is a piece hidden in the wax block that just wants to grow out of it. The wax block, heat pen and carving tools become my "sketch book". 

I have the advantage of working/ sketching in a cheap material like wax. If I screw it up or decide I actually don't like the design, I can just trow it away or melt the wax into something else. If I would do more fabrication work, I would start sketching more. It would be way smarter to sketch on paper before actually cutting into expensive metal. 

I also do not think I am a good sketcher. I just can't get those 3 dimensional shapes translated on the 2 dimensional paper. Sketching in wax stays all in 3 dimensions, so it feels more natural to me. 
To sketch decent one needs to stay in practice. At the beginning of my architecture career I used to sketch more and had a fairly good sketching hand. Now everything is done in CAD model and drawing software and I barely ever sketch anything. If I ever have to sketch now, it looks horrible to me. Gone are the times when I just hand the contractor a sketch of a detail I want him to built. Now I have to go back to the office and sketch it up in CAD. 

Wax model of ring for fancy cut sapphire

Once I am satisfied with a new design it goes into the next casting run and eventually will be finished in a few weeks time.

Please check out what other EtsyMetal members sketching up right now.

Rebecca Bogan -
Shirlee Grund -
2Roses -
Beth Cyr -
Kate Jones
Erin Austin
Michele Grady
Elizabeth Scott
Su Trindle
Evelyn Markasky

Salt formations in my quench pot

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The water evaporated in my quench pot and left salts in the water to form amazing patters around few silver drops.

I put soldered pieces in the water before it goes in the pickle pot to quench them.  The water is also used after pickle cleaning to remove the acid from the pieces. 

Pickel is a water diluted acid solution to remove oxides on precious metals produced from heating and soldering as well as glassy flux residues. When I cast new jewelry they come out black since the silver is covered with oxidation. Putting them in the heated pickle for a couple minutes removed all the oxidation and leaves them white.
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