Thursday, November 28, 2013

The 1st Annual Black Forest ArtWorks Thanksgiving Forge-a-thon!

We couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate Thanksgiving morning than by inviting friends over to forge together.  Granted, it could have been warmer, but we had pumpkin pie and a fire going, not to mention the forge itself! 

What a great new tradition to start!  Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!!!! 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Forging at Nol Putnam's Studio

Jeff couldn’t resist the opportunity to forge a bit at Nol Putnam’s studio.  It’s a beautiful work space and Nol was so generous to allow Jeff the chance.  Thank you, Nol!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Visit with Nol Putnam

We had the great pleasure recently of spending the morning with our friend and acclaimed artist-blacksmith/photographer, Nol Putnam.    He was featured as part of the 2013 Artists  of the Rappahannock Studio and Gallery Tour and we stopped by to show our support.  

It was a wonderful treat to spend some time with Nol — he’s a dear inspiration for both Jeff and myself (he’s the very reason I am learning to use a 35mm lens b/c of a simple email from him that unleashed an idea, which is why I am taking vertical pictures again after a 10 year hiatus!….) Nol has many more important honors, though, including creating several of the ironwork gates for the National Cathedral.  

And my kids love that his huge ironwork pieces can’t be broken, not that they were wrestling or anything after 3 hours of visiting!  

It was a gift to spend time with Nol — what a lovely morning. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Demo at St. Albans

What a way to end our fall demo season!  We enjoyed a lovely day at St. Albans in D.C., where several teachers at the school had designed their early fall curriculum around something related to blacksmithing, (i.e. Adam Smith, the importance of metal and forging to world civilizations, Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations, the industrialization of Europe, etc…) and asked us to teach and demonstrate to those various topics.  

We have met thousands and thousands of interesting people while demo’ing for four+ years, but we’ve never had a demo start with student-written odes to metallurgy!  

In addition, all the students and teachers got the opportunity to make (and take!) a colonial-style nail.  

It was just the sort of demo that Jeff and I love to do, and we are very thankful for the opportunity to work with St. Albans.  Also, we’d like to thank the members of the football team and other student athletes for helping us load our equipment afterwards!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Recent Photography Honors

My photo “Sugar Cookies” will be included in an exhibition titled “Feast” at Darkroom Gallery opening November 14th.  

In addition, “Autumn Reflections” was honored with an “honorable mention” award and is on display at the following galleries, as part of exhibitions supporting River to Well:

  • Lawrence, Kansas — Signs of Life Gallery, November 8

  • Minneapolis, Minnesota — Ambiente Gallerie, December 6, through January 1. 

Finally, several of my photographs were used in a recent newspaper article about Montessori students studying, raising, and releasing Monarch butterflies: 

The article and photos are on page 22 of this edition:

Monday, November 4, 2013

Demo at Peirce Mill Heritage Day

We recently demo’d at the Peirce Mill Heritage Day and had a nice time visiting with folks at this small, but lovely, event.  The mill operated a few times during our demo and other people demonstrated various crafts.


We focused on making nails and a few hooks during our time at the festival.  We were blessed to spend some quality time with visitors, which is always our goal — teaching and making connections is our focus.  

At one point, a young boy who had been watching and watching….and came back to watch some more, said to me, “You mean, you’re married to him? (gesturing to Jeff at the anvil).  I said that I was.  ”That’s so cool!!!” he replied.  Jeff chimed in that he totally agreed.  It was a priceless moment.