It was a bit tough picking out a school both Lisa and I wanted to attend. We ended up looking at a bunch of different schools throughout the US and finally settled on Colorado State University. It offers a metalsmithing program I’m very interested in, along with some exciting engineering programs for Lisa.
I settled on the arts early on in our search for schools, and was dismayed to find many of the programs offered out there didn’t seem as good as the others. Then came the tricky part of matching up a program I liked the sound of, with a school that offered a something Lisa wanted to take. One of the programs that looked good to me was the MFA in metals at the Oregon College of Art and Craft. They have an interesting set of classes and we both would have enjoyed living in Oregon, but we’d already discovered Fort Collins in Colorado at this point. Another program I looked into was offered at an Arizona university. This one mixed metalsmithing with blacksmithing, with access to an outdoor blacksmithing forge.
I was always comparing the various courses with the one offered at CSU, and I kept finding it to be the most interesting. Especially intriguing are some of the advanced techniques which will be available to me in the 3rd and 4th years:
ART 445 04(0-8-0). Metalsmithing and Jewelry IV.
Chasing and repousse techniques in two- and three-dimension; inlay, engraving, and etching techniques.
ART 446 04(0-8-0). Metalsmithing and Jewelry V.
Advanced techniques: granulation, electroforming, photoetching, makume, niello; ferrous metals techniques.
The makume and niello in particular are techniques I haven’t been able to find offered anywhere else. I would really love to get some experience with makume, or burl metal technique. It sparks all kinds of ideas thinking about being able to make something out of metal that looks like wood. Niello is a similarly striking technique which adds a black metallic mixture to your metalworking. It can create beautifully contrasting works of art.
I am very grateful to be able to go to Colorado and learn the metalsmithing that I have been dreaming about for several years now. This is such a wonderful opportunity to have, and I look forward to sharing the various creations I make in this program.