Enameling & Metal Coloration

Graphics Enameling Basics
Learn the basics of an ancient decorative technique of fusing vitreous enamel, a material made of powdered glass mixed with minerals for coloration, to a steel substrate. You'll be introduced to the skills necessary for successful enameling, appropriate for projects such as signage, installations, mural elements or similar larger-scale work. This class does not cover jewelry enameling.

We'll start with the basics of mixing enamels and preparing the substrate, and then explore a variety of enamel surface design techniques. Using viscous medium and mason stains for coloration, you'll paint, sgraffito, sponge, and otherwise manipulate the enamels to produce exciting effects that result in a durable, temperature resistant surface unaffected by UV light. Using the various techniques demonstrated, you'll work on and fire pieces suitable for technical reference as well as a finished piece.

Instructor: Heather Doyle is CAFAC's artistic director, and she has taught sculptural welding and blacksmithing for more than 10 years. Her enameling background began with the John Biggers Seed Project, a major public art installation coming soon to North Minneapolis, comprised of enameled steel panels on a bridge railing over Highway 94. Heather oversaw the buildout of CAFAC's enameling studio and has trained with master enamelists Dave Berfield and Barbara Minor.

4 sessions: Fridays & Saturdays, 1/12 - 1/20, 3 to 6 p.m.
Fee: $220 ($120 tuition + $100 materials)

Color on Metal
If you find yourself torn between your passion for metals and your love of color, then this workshop is for you. Carol Warner’s Color on Metal method is like no other coloration technique used in traditional metalworking. It gives non-precious metals a more desirable and elegant quality, building a depth of surface that ranges from opaque and powerful to delicate and translucent. Learn how to create any color you choose on any type of metal. Determine beforehand what your final outcome will be or let the process evolve and surprise you!

You will start with provided samples to learn surface preparation, undercoating, color mixing and basic application of the pigments and move on to exploring as many variations as possible. As you gain experience and confidence in creating and applying color, you will begin to use this process on your own work while further experimenting with test pieces. You will learn to build layers of pigments to create complex surfaces and interesting color schemes and to protect your projects with various sealants.

By the end of the class, you will have a solid understanding of color relationships, mixing and application techniques, as well as the basics of additional materials that can widen your outcome options. You will take away a variety of samples and finished projects unlike any you’ve made before. No background? Not to worry; this is a chance to experiment and explore how colors mix and match. No particular metalsmithing skills are required, and this process does not use heat or fire.

Instructor: Carol Warner is a career artist, specializing in hand hammered holloware. Over the years she has pushed the boundaries of scale until it demanded the use of fabricators. She now collaborates with world renowned Mexican coppersmiths who create vessels per her designs. Treating the forms like canvases, she converts them into image based objects which reflect powerful forces of nature. Fanatic about color, she left behind traditional methods of patination and developed her own system, handcrafting her own custom colors. Carol’s work has been widely exhibited on an international level and is presented annually at Chicago’s prestigious Sculpture, Objects and Functional Art Exhibit by Maria Elena Kravetz Gallery of Cordoba, Argentina.

6 weeks: Mondays, 4/9 - 5/14, 6 to 9 p.m.
Fee: $235 (tuition $180 + $55 materials)

Color on Metal Reheater
If you've already taken Color on Metal and would like the opportunity to continue working on projects, this option is for you. You'll be able to work independently during class time, with guidance from the instructor as needed. We save two Reheater spots in each Color on Metal class; if no spots are currently available, email us to be put on the waiting list for additional Reheater spots that may open up.

6 weeks
Fee: $190
This class is offered once per year. Please email info@cafac.org to be put on the list for notice of future offerings!