How can I go abut learning metalsmithing for jewelry making?
February 17, 2012 8:03 AM Subscribe
How can I go abut learning jewelry making? Real metalsmithing, not just stringing beads on wires...
posted by juliewhite to science & nature (12 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
I've been attempting to learn jewelry making on my own, and well... it is slow going. I would like to learn some of the technical mastery that’s been lacking in my work, and develop some real craftsmanship. I intend to make a living from this...
While I have learned a great deal on my own, my skill set is not well rounded and I need more balance in my technique and knowledge. My experience in fabrication has been focused on copper and enamel work. I have a theoretical understanding of most fabrication techniques, but no practical experience with many of them. I am competent with a jeweler’s saw, but my success rate with silver brazing is deplorable. Casting remains an unexplored area for me, and one that I’d love to gain experience in. Knowledge of precious metals and gems would also greatly benefit me, as these materials are frequent elements of my design concepts.
I Would like to focus on:
- Forming including raising, hollow forms (seaming), etc
- Complicated clasps/mechanisms
- High degree of precision in all facets of fabrication (ie cold connections, settings, etc)
- Finishing methods
- Wax modeling/effective spruing
- Working with fine metals
- Stone setting including more advanced techniques
And would like to continue education afterward through workshops/etc (unless included in prior education):
- Basic engraving and/or chasing
- Basse taille
- Plique a jour
- Basic electroplating
Should I apprentice or attend a trade school? Where? I am willing to do whatever it takes, but favor a two-year program over a four-year bachelors program.
[Yes, I have seen this: