Sunday, August 15, 2010

Handmade Division Team - Talk About...


It's time for our monthly Handmade Division Team topic!!!

What would you like to create but do not currently have the skills or technology to do?

To start, I love to figure things out. I have always been that way with musical instruments(buy first, learn later) and it definitely carries over to my artwork. There are so many things that I would like to do, but lack the tools and know how to do it. Once I get the tools and the capability "skill" is not so much an issue as I am willing to put the time and effort into figuring it out and practicing. I have just been through this with stone cabbing/lapidary... still have a ways to go with cabbing, but I am having a blast learning.

Right now what I reallllly want to learn, and am about to make a priority is... engraving. I would love to get the tools that I need and really start giving this real try. Sure I have dabbled in it, but I want to put some real effort into it. Being able to add engraved designs to my work would be so nice right about now. I have always wished that there was a way to "draw" on my work and engraving seems to be the way to go.

Acid etching is another skill that I have dabbled in but wish to really put some effort into. It is another way for me to draw on my work. Currently I have a nitric acid setup, but find it too unpredictable and uncomfortable to work with.

I have tried scribing and some other techniques to get this drawn look, but nothing has worked out the way I wanted as of yet.

I am open for suggestions!!!

Please stop by some of our other team member blogs and see what they are thinking on this same topic!!! Seriously, these artists are great, you don't want to miss what they have to say!!!


Lisa Hopkins Design:

Jewelry by Natsuko:

Beth Cyr:

ArtJewel Designs:

Abhaya Fibers:

Nova of Sweden

Bella-Bijou Jewellery:

Pink Crow Studio:

Sand Fibers:

Alice Istanbul:

Thomasin Durgin:

Moxie & Oliver:

Andes Cruz:



  1. Great post! I want to learn to engrave too. Perehaps you could try electrolytic etching for silver? I don't use nitric, which is why i only etch brass and copper. Electrolytic seems a great solution, and you can get great detail using digital files, i can't wait to try it.

  2. Awesome Bill! Engraving is a skill, for sure. Me too. I have basics - i learned it at Revere, but it takes a crap load of time in it to get good :) I think you'll do well with it, all you need to start is about 4 gravers, and a sharpening stone. square, round, teardrop shape, and pointy, like a diamond. I have some stuff I can pdf for you, but I bet there is some good stuff on the ganoksin video site, and possibly youtube as well. after that, get yourself a LOT of copper, and practice!. oh. and a gravers ball is a must. otto frei has a cheaper than gravermax one, that is very good. cheaper, but not cheap.

  3. Engraving would be so cool to learn. I hear ya about the silver etching. I do it, and it's a real pain. So expensive and messy (and toxic to breathe). I wish there were an easier way.

  4. That sounds sooooo fun! If only I worked in metals - but then, the world probably has enough metal leaves, trees, vines and whatnot, and I am sure that would be my first love! I would love to see what you did with it - your art is gorgeous already!

  5. I want to learn etching too, but the chemicals scare me as well. Engraving sounds like a safer way to "draw" on your designs. Can't wait to see what you come up with!

  6. Great post !
    There is a nice book for engraving "The jewelry engravers manual" by Hardy and Bowman / Dover book this book is a must and it will give you clear step by step instructions.
    I LOVE etching more than engraving :-)

  7. Thank you all for the inspiring words! Great ideas and thanks for all the info :} I couldn't do all of this without everyones support!

  8. Fantastic, Bill! When you're passionate about trying something new, I think it's your intuition openning up your creative floodgates. Can't wait to see where this takes you in your work!!!

  9. Great post! I can relate! I'd love to do engraving too and hope to invest in some tools soon. I look forward to seeing what you will come up with.