Tenderizing, uh I mean, Texturizing Metal

Asphalt Texture Yo.
Asphalt Texture Yo.

This weekend I worked some more on that crazy vessel form I showed you the idea for last week. I want to make the point that the ENTIRE weekend was spent basically texturizing the metal and cutting out for those eelish bits.

Why did it take so long just to texture the metal, Wendy?

I thought long and hard about what metal and what texture I wanted for those parts. I figured if I was doing some crazy design with an intricate riveting problem, that I wanted it to be just right. I thought about doing my basic concrete texture that I have on so many of my pieces. I even have it underneath the raising marks on the bowl part of this piece. But I didn’t want to go with simple just because it was easier. I wanted a texture that went this piece – frenzied.

The first wedge folds - this was done long ways on 22g red brass.
The first wedge folds – this was done long ways on 22g red brass.

So I decided to try and recreate the texture in Lunar Remembrance. This would take long, after all that was about a 4″ disk and I would need a piece of metal approximately 6″ x 12″ for this. But I want to do this right.

So I used asphalt to create the initial texture. It’s much rougher than the concrete, but can leave some residue and the noise annoys my neighbors. Then I did a double wedge fold, texturing some with my sinking hammer and then adding dots with a dapping punch. At this point I needed to flatten it out again (keep in mind the numerous annealings.)

Flattened after the first fold.
Flattened after the first fold.

Now there is a second double wedge fold that runs perpendicular to the first folds. More texturing of the folded metal. Now I needed to open and flatten it again. I want to point out that I needed to leverage the folded metal in my vise and put a foot on the table and do all sorts of contortionist type moves to open it each time. Then I reigned down terror, er, I mean hammered the crap out of the

The second wedge fold. I couldn't balance the colors in this photo right, sorry.
The second wedge fold. I couldn’t balance the colors in this photo right, sorry.

metal to flatten it as well as I could. It was a bit cathartic. At this point there was ibuprofen and rum applied. To me, not the metal.

The next part involved cutting, cutting, cutting. By this I mean sawing, sawing, sawing. Then filing, filing, filing. You know my thoughts on this. Next time I’m able to get in the studio I will start actually forming the pieces to fit the bowl. I can’t wait.

And then she did reign terror upon the brass... ©2013 WTEK
And then she did reign terror upon the brass…
Finally the shapes are ready for forming ©2013 WTEK
Finally the shapes are ready for forming ©2013 WTEK

2 thoughts on “Tenderizing, uh I mean, Texturizing Metal

  1. I love hearing about your process, and seeing photos of the journey! You were my original inspiration for beginning copper work, so I am in awe of your work!! After spending about 7 months in this medium, I can totally relate to the many (many) hours spent on the basic design. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

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