Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Baptism by Fire

As you know, we headed south to St. Petersburg, Florida, this weekend for the Painting With Fire Workshop. Nothing like spending 20 hours in the car in order to go to a 4-hour class! We jewelry artisans are a dedicated (and crazy) bunch...

We finally found the salon where the workshop was being held, in a beautiful, artsy section of St. Petersburg. This is the back of the studio where we played Sunday afternoon: those 2 garage doors open to provide wonderful ventilation courtesy of the sea breeze. Perfect!

This is the table, set up with workstations for all the students:

That's my workstation at the bottom left, with my apron on back of the chair, and my visor on the table. I needed my visor (in addition to my glasses) in order to see well enough to get the beads on the mandrel. Because I am seriously vision-impaired.

Oh, yeah - and note that Barbara put the first aid kit right next to me - almost as if she knew me!

Closeup of my workstation:

Here is our lovely and gracious host, Barbara Lewis, at the end of the table, doing a bead demo:

Some of the enamel colors we were able to play with:

Some of my classmates, hard at work fun:

 There was a lot of wonderful artwork displayed in the salon, sculptures, glass, paintings, baskets, and more - but I want you to enjoy the painting which is hanging at the far end of the worktable. I fell in love with this lady walking her poodles, and I even named her "Bagel Knees," because her knees look like the bagels we had at our hotel's continental breakfast that morning!

Here is a shot of my bead pan, filled with vermiculite and my cooling beads, as well as some of the enamel colors I was sharing with Kris:

Here is my bead haul from the workshop - some great beads, and some not-so-great ones. But I learned a lot, had a lot of fun, and came home with almost everything I need to sit down and start making these colorful enamelled pieces on my own!

And alas, I did NOT have an injury-free weekend.

About halfway through the class, I learned that fire makes metal beads HOT.

Nice singe marks on top of that blister, huh? This was taken almost immediately after I accidentally touched the bead.

Here is the finger this morning:

It's a nice, deep second degree burn, with a huge area of 1st degree burn around it. And the worst part? It's my iPad-tappin' finger. Really put a crimp in my game play for a few days....

And after the class, we got to see Barbara's brand new Florida studio - almost ready to open! It is in a beautiful area, and is just going to be gorgeous!


In the Light of the Moon said...

It was great to meet you and I look forward to seeing some of your enamel creations.Warmest Regards,Cat

Maggie said...

Those all look great to me! I've been avoiding learning just one more thing..., but think I would like making enamel beads. Sorry about your finger. I've touched metal tools and glass rods that had just been in the flame and have had similar markings.

Lupe Meter said...

That looks like so much fun! I would love to take that class someday, but I would probably touch a bead and burn myself...not once but several times, which is why I have been putting it off. Not sure I would be good with torch. Hope your finger heals fast! OUCH!

Sweet Freedom said...

*waves at Cat*

BackstoryBeads said...

Wow, those enamelled pieces are fabulous! Let me know if you decide to teach a class at YaYa. I will be there!