These photographs represent some of my current work. One of my goals with these pieces has been to emphasize what can be created with the ancient art of Chasing & Repoussé.
Chasing & Repoussé
- Chasing is the art of decorating the metal’s surface through texturing, lining and completing the finished work.
- Repoussé is the process of pushing the metal to add depth and height. It is the work of raising the metal and is done on the back side of the piece, requiring one to think in reverse.
- Pitch is an elastic, tar-like material the supports the metal as it is worked. It comes in a number of varieties such as German Red & Black, Green pine tar resin base, and virgin tar. Pitch consistencies variety from soft, medium and hard depending on the work to be performed.
- Chasing Hammer is a specialized hammer that has a specific handle and thin shaft. Its design helps the hammer spring back after making contact with the punch.
- Chasing Punches are generally made from tool steel. They are used to move the metal, add texture and finish the work. I have made a few of my own tools to create a desired effect.
I have chosen a variety of metals as my canvas to showcase the uniqueness of the subject matter.
- 22KT gold fused to Steel. This is a metal I have created by fusing gold to steel. When the metal reaches 1500˚F, the gold liquifies, flows and fuses to the steel. After Chasing work is finished, I create a permanent black patina through the application of heat to the metal. It is a fascinating process for me as I watch the metal change from grey to black as I move the flame of my torch under the metal.
- Shakudo. This is a Japanese alloy of 3-5% pure gold combined with pure copper. I find this material to be very rich and warm; it appears to take on a deep rose gold color when finished. For some pieces I have applied a patina, others I have left in their natural state to take on their own color through oxidation.
- Shibuichi. Another Japanese alloy utilizing a 1/4 pure silver with 3/4 copper. This combination takes on a silvery sheen as worked. My preference is to leave the metal without any patina. As it is worn, it takes on a ‘life of its own’ through the oils of the wearer’s skin and being exposed to the elements.
- Sterling Silver. The main material I use in my work and moves very well. Its composition is 92.5% silver with 7.5% other metals, usually copper. I tend to apply a liver of sulphur solution to create a patina. With wear, this continues to change.
I have a passion for this work; each piece is a labor of love. Enjoy and consider becoming a collector.