My career has been a combination of carpentry and metalsmithing. I draw on many of the same resources for both and I've found that knowledge gained in one skill feeds the other.
Working with metals I find it necessary to constantly strike a balance between the form I have in mind and what the metal lends itself to become. A plain strip of sheet metal can become a beautiful form with just a simple bend or twist. Molten silver poured into wet straw can yield complex, detailed, but random forms. I usually begin a piece by starting at one of these points—a simple form that I find intriguing and then build on it, drawing from animal and plant forms, sometimes incorporating a sense of motion. When I’m having trouble with the progression of my work, it’s usually because I’m fighting the material rather than taking advantage of its properties. My satisfaction comes from understanding the material and finding what it can do for me.
All of my work is hand fabricated using a variety of techniques including forging, forming with hammers, dies and stakes, soldering, sawing, filing, photo etching, and enameling. Most of the work is done with traditional hand tools.