Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Metal Museum

Lucky for me, the National Ornamental Metal Museum is located in Memphis. I don't know what we did to deserve them, and whoever made that happen should be thanked profusely. I've been meaning to take a class there for years, and - with the help of my awesome friend Britton - this finally happened a few weeks ago.

I had no idea that so much work went into the creation of a copper weathervane. The cost of any handmade one you find should be immediately doubled. Tripled. Promise the artist your firstborn. My point: it's wicked hard. I am truly impressed with the people I met there that have chosen a lifetime of very difficult manual labor in picking metalwork as their artistic medium. I spent three days working on my weathervane, and on Sunday after class ended I had to go to school to get some work done. I literally skipped into the darkroom...that's how happy I was to be there after spending three days blowtorching and banging on copper. Mind you, I had a great time. It was just so exhausting!

Here are a few pictures from my weekend spent there.

This is Jim Masterson, Shop Foreman at the metal museum and resident badass. He is putting the finishing touches on my copper weathervane here. I had just enough energy left at this point to hold up my camera.

After I cut the cat out of two larger pieces of (originally flat) copper, Kevin soldered them together. You might think at this point that I'm lying and they made this for me. You'd be partially right - this was a couple hours after class officially ended and about 20 minutes before I left. They are much, much speedier at this type of thing.


It is a mistake to scratch your face after banging on copper all day. Big mistake. Side story: I looked pretty much just like this when Britton and I went to dinner at Soul Fish in midtown. She went to the restroom while I walked up to the register to pay the check. The manager saw the empty table and immediately asked the girl accepting my check "if those two women ran out on their check." We looked sketchy. And, yes, Britton totally called him out on it on our way out the door. Even if it's hilarious, she doesn't let that type of thing fly.


Blowtorch. I still can't believe they let me use this thing. Have they met me?!?

Britton made an awesome dragonfly!!

Here's my cat still in the die.


Love it!

They're working on a very large fence (that word doesn't seem to sum it up but I can't think of another one right now) for a large estate in Cookville, TN. Watching them work on this made my copper weathervane action look wimpy.


cmyk search