Enamelling

3 Nov 2016- Practical Workshop, Introduction to Enamelling, with Rachel Davis.

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Wow, wow, wow! This was a fantastic workshop. I had no idea what to expect, and was so pleasantly delighted. It was possible to get results in a very short period, which is always pleasing for those with little patience. I had in mind that it might be similar to ceramics and the pieces would need a longer time in the kilns. But not so, 2-5 minutes and the little particles of glass melted into a solidified shiny piece of beauty. Okay, maybe not all of our tests were truly beautiful, but the reflective brilliance of the glass at work, does in fact enhance. Not quite a silk purse, but it does have an effect.


Rachel showed us some examples of artists who used enamel in their work. From the historical decorative arts to contemporary pieces. I was very taken with the work of Laura Boswell. The large enamel pieces she did for Aylesbury town centre, really triggered some ideas for my own work, which I will go into greater detail in my concepts/ideas section. Because the work was so large she needed to work from AJ Wells and Sons Vitreous Enamellers. This is a company that would normally produce industrial, architectural, and/or commercial signage, which is why they are set up to do the large enamelling work. It would be fascinating to visit.

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She also talked about screenprinting with on-glaze enamel, and using decal transfer papers if you are looking to “print” on enamel. There is also the possibility of sending artwork to Digital Ceramics if you have the money and are not interested in attempting this yourself. I am very interested to do some tests with some of my photographs and getting them made into decal transfers. If they work well, then it would be interesting to explore larger possibilities at A.J. Wells & Sons, but I would hate to guess what the costs would be. Might be worth searching for funding now, if one wanted a large enamelled piece in 3 years time!

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