I have been doing a few colour tests of enamels that are new to me. This one is called Forsythia and is manufactured by Milton Bridge Ceramic Colours Ltd but will be available from Vitrum Signum. More information on the Guild of Enamellers website
I really enjoy this time of year. Not only can I look forward to Christmas but the busy period is behind me, any galleries I supply need their new stock around mid-October. The garden and the moorland around my studio still have quite a lot of vivid autumn colour at the moment and my favourite Japanese flowering cherry is coming into flower, although it’s only just dropped this year’s leaves. It has done this some previous years and I love that it flowers over such an extended period.
I have spent some time last week emptying my display cabinets, partly because I was having a popup shop in Whitby last Thursday evening. It gave me the opportunity to review my work and make a few decisions about directions for next year.
I have reorganised my display so that all the plant based designs are now together. These include some pieces of crochet in wire, some cloisonné enamels and some of the pieces pierced from silver sheet inspired by my year as artist in residence at Whitby Museum.
These two pendants are all that remain of a collection of floral cloisonné enamels I made many years ago and I intend to do more of this in 2014, including teaching cloisonné enamelling techniques on a regular basis throughout the year. I am looking forward to building up a new collection before the autumn in time for an exhibition by members of the Guild of Enamellers at the Pannett Art Gallery next October.
Enamelling has been my passion for many years and I haven’t quite got over being awarded honorary membership of the Guild at the conference last April, which I think must have been one of the highlights of 2013 for me.
Here I am being presented with my certificate by the then Chair Jane Ball. I have also had three rings included in the ‘Heart of the Heat’ exhibition of enamelling in Birmingham and two enamelled beads selected for the book 1000 Beads due to be published next May by Lark Books (one of which will be on the cover). The emphasis of classes for 2014 will be very much on enamelling including enamelling on copper; enamelling on silver and on art clay silver and enamelling ‘in the round’ or onto curved surfaces.
I have been having a big tidy up in my studio, emptied all the display cabinets and gave everything a thorough clean. I have redisplayed some of my work and now have a whole cabinet and plant and flower inspired jewellery. These are two pieces, the first made from sterling silver sheet was inspired by Victorian pressed plants in Whitby museum and the other is crocheted in wire and is a much earlier piece of textile related jewellery.
I am in the process of planning my teaching schedule for 2014 and it will include plenty of opportunities to learn to enamel, both on silver and copper, as well as classes in the New Mokume Gane techniques – including the four day certification course developed by Aida Corporation, the manufacturers of Art Clay products. If you would be interested in taking a class then just use the comments box to contact me (I won’t publish your details). I look forward to seeing some of you in the new year!
A group of us are preparing for the Guild of Enamellers exhibition at the Pannett Gallery in Whitby. It includes work from members all over the country, Glasgow to Hastings, the Wirral to Whitby and the official opening takes place on Friday 6th July 2012 at 7pm. Please leave a comment if you would an invitation.
The exhibition is open 9.30 to 4.30 daily (closed Mondays) and runs until Sunday 12 August 2012.
There will be a number of enamelling workshops running in conjunction with the exhibition, some in my studio a out 12 miles from Whitby and others in the Museum (adjoining the gallery). It is essential to book in advance as limited places are available each day. For more information email me
The up and coming class with Tilly Wilkinson is full but if you would like to do this please get in touch. If there is enough interest there is a chance we could run this again.
**Saturday and Sunday 7th and 8th July 2012 Special Two Day Enamelling workshop with Guest Tutor Tilly Wilkinson
While the Guild of Enamellers Exhibition is on at the Pannett Art Gallery in Whitby
Images into enamel with Tilly Wilkinson
Enamelling on copper and steel using riso screens. Learn how to make your own silk screens to produce a range of images, either from existing illustrations/ photographs or from your own drawings. Produce colourful and beautiful wall panels from these images on either copper or steel. Suitable for those who are new to enamelling or those with some enamelling experience. A range of ready made screens will also be available for you to use. There will be a charge for copper and steel used during the course. The maximum size of copper or steel will be 100mm x 100mm, smaller pieces will be available. Riso screen material will be charged at £3.50 per A4 sheet. Enamels and equipment are included in the course fee.
Course fee £150 per person for the weekend
21st July 2012 Introduction to Enamelling in the round – Embellish silver beads £170
28th and 29th July 2012 Plique a jour enamel with art clay silver £340 two day course On the first day you will design and make silver earrings, learning the basic principles of design for plique a jour enamel and firing and finishing them ready for the second day. On day two you will learn to prepare the enamel and to apply it, firing and gradually building up the cells until they are filled. You will then give the pieces a final finish and add the findings ready to wear. The course includes small amounts of three enamel colours, enough to complete the project.
These two introductory courses are great value – perfect opportunity to try out enamelling!
Tuesday 7th August Introduction to cloisonné enamelling at Pannett Art Gallery, Whitby –
£55 per person
Saturday 11th August 2012 Introduction to enamelling on copper at Pannett Art Gallery with Tilly Wilkinson – £55 per person
I also run metal clay classes, here are a few dates –
Saturday 18th August 2012 Introduction to Art Clay Silver £145
Saturday 8th September 2012 Introduction to Art Clay Silver £145
Saturday 22nd September 2012 Introduction to Art Clay Silver £145
For anyone interested in learning to enamel I can highly recommend this book by Dorothy Cockrell. She is a longstanding member of the Guild of Enamellers and editor of the Guild’s quarterly journal. She writes in a very clear, no-nonsense style and this is a well illustrated book, with plenty of projects to get you started.
I would also recommend you to join the Guild even as a complete beginner, as joining will bring you into contact with such an enthusiastic bunch of people, generously willing to share their knowledge at regional meetings and other Guild events. A number of members run classes, often aimed at beginners and at introductory level. If you would like any further information then either have a look at the Guild website or email me.