We’re featured in a cool article about creating a maker space in the March/April 2019 Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist Magazine! Pick up a copy to read about Danaca Design and other spaces that cater to artists, jewelers, and makers. We’re pretty excited about it, we even made a SHORT! little video.
Happy New Year!
Back in February 2018, oh my, so long ago…Danaca Design hosted a fabulous show in the gallery, Crowning Glory: Ruling our Destinies, Directing our own Paths. This exhibition of crowns and tiaras was bold, creative and downright fun! I’m sorry if you missed it but you might be in luck – our tiara show is traveling to Greenville, North Carolina!
Chief, Queen, Tsar, Kaiser, Monarch, Caliph. The words conjure images of power and pageantry, impressive jewels, and imposing headdresses, crowns, and tiaras. Throughout history ruling over others usually meant belonging to the “right” family and class—and displaying the associated bling that demonstrated with sparkling intensity their wealth, power, and good taste.
Crowning Glory will be on exhibit through January 24 at Pitt County Arts Council at Emerge in the Don Edward Gallery. This non-profit arts organization is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life in Pitt County by promoting artists and arts organizations, educating through the arts, and making the arts accessible to the entire community.
This wonderful opportunity came to us as part of an inspiring symposium hosted annually at East Carolina University, the ECU Material Topics Symposium. I’ve never attended this event but have heard it’s a good one, something to add to your calendar. This year’s theme is “State of Adornment: Subject to Change,” and it’s this weekend! Find the detailed symposium schedule here: https://materialtopics.com/2019schedule/
There is a reception ECU Material Topics Symposium reception for our show Friday evening, January 18, 6pm -8pm.
Learn more at http://www.pittcountyarts.org/gallery/current-shows
Image and Mark Making in Enamel with Jan Smith
August 17-19 at Danaca Design
“I love the diversity and seductive qualities of the enamel and enjoy sharing an understanding of the material with students. I begin with a simple sketch, using the enamel as a printmaking or drawing medium, I work rather intuitively allowing the work to evolve. There is an element of assemblage or evolution in my process and composition, and I am excited about the imperfections in the surfaces.” -Jan Smith
With her decades of experience as a printmaker and jewelry designer, Jan Smith has a remarkable amount of expertise creating various compositions in enamel with a wide range of techniques. Her illustrative approach is translated into botanical and natural forms as well as more abstract and modern designs that rely on linear detail, diverse layers of color, and fine execution.
Over three days in August, Smith will lead students through a broad range of techniques to develop exciting surfaces. With sgraffito, students can create multiple layers of contrasting color by scratching or drawing designs in a top layer of enamel allowing the color beneath to show through after the piece has been fired. Through multiple layers of opaque or translucent glazes, different effects and levels of depth in the piece can be achieved. Underglaze pencils and watercolor techniques allow for more intensive detail and line-work, as well as intriguing color-play evoking greater subtlety and depth in the designs. Over-glazing in translucent or clear finishes can achieve unifying effects and protect the piece. Ultimately this workshop will open a whole new world of detail and depth to every students enamel work.
In Image and Mark Making in Enamel, Jan Smith takes the time to explain how each method can work with the others to build distinctive pieces. Students create prototypes of each technique, getting a feel for each method’s possibilities, and then create a series of pieces that can be incorporated into their jewelry. Armed with new knowledge, tools, and enamels, practitioners will have an entirely new narrative with which to compose pieces and images to “make their mark”.
We can’t wait!
Sometimes the old ways are the best. The first weekend in August silversmith and jeweler Juan Reyes will take students through several casting techniques that have been used for millennia in, Low-Tech Gravity Casting. Not only are they tried and true, these methods also use a minimal amount of equipment, and can be easily reproduced in a home studio, or even in your backyard.
Juan will guide students through various mold making processes and approaches. Whether it’s sand casting found objects, such as twigs or buttons, exploring the unique textures of cuttlebone, or carving your own molds in tufa stone that you can reproduce time after time, this two day casting class opens novice and experienced jewelers alike to this fun and rewarding sculpting method. It is also one of the best ways to use your scrap silver!
With his expertise and enthusiasm Juan Reyes brings warmth and creativity to every class he teaches. He recently took the time to answer a few questions about his work.
What got you started in metal smithing and jewelry making?
My family has several jewelers in it. As a child, jewelry was something that I didn’t want to make when I was living with them. When I came to Seattle, I realized that I was missing that part of my family.
What do you like best about casting pieces?
One of things I like about a casting a piece is that once you made the first piece, you can make a mold and make as many as you want.
Do you have a favorite casting method?
Sand casting is my favorite method. It’s easy for me, because you just have to have something to print into the sand, then you close the mold and pour the metal. However, at the end of my class everybody has their own favorite method.
What are the biggest challenges new learners might have in this class?
The big challenge that I notice in my class all the time for my students, is learning to be comfortable with a big torch and pouring the metal into a mold once the metal is melted.
Do you have a favorite casting material?
Silver is my favorite metal to work with. Silver is very forgiving, you can melt and reuse it many times, that’s why I like it.