How to Improve Cutting

Most of us are aware to use a cutting lubricant like BurLife on our saw blades, but did you know it can and should be used in all metal cutting processes? Saw blades. Using a lubricant will prolong the life of the blades. It will stop chatter and will make cutting the...

What do you do with negative feedback?

A big hurdle for most artists is putting their work out there for the public to see. Most of us have that “fraud” mentality, that we aren’t really an artist yet, and why would anyone like our work let alone buy it? And as an artist you are going to get negative...

Bezel Sizing Tip

I always love a good tip to make my work easier. I had completely forgotten this one until someone mentioned it the other day. In our quest to create bezels the correct size, we sometimes get them just a hair too small. In class I generally have people remake the...

Picking Stones

I get this question a lot from students…. How do you pick your stones for your work? Well if you are anything like me you get really distracted with shiny, pretty things, and that is double bad when it is stones. This is an area that you can overspend (often) and...

Tips for taking your work to the next level

Check to make sure flat surfaces are truly flat. Take a piece of 400-grit sandpaper, place it flat on your work surface, and sand both sides of your piece. If the sanding pattern is uneven, where there are spots that are not sanded, then it isn’t flat. Cutting and...

Get out Quickly – Soldering Tip

What does “get out quickly” have to do with soldering? Recently I have noticed a number of students having trouble with their solder joins. They are seeing their solder flow, but when testing the strength of the solder join – like flaring a ring – the join fails....

Staying on Track: Part 3 – Getting the Work Done

It is all fine and good to have your projects and tasks listed out. And even better if they are prioritized. But if you don’t or can’t act on them, then what was the point? To make you feel bad? NO. Part 1 of this series was about getting all the information on paper....

The Ugly Side of Business

Many large retailers have programs for artists. This gets their products into larger chain stores and can be huge in building their business. It can also be crushing. I became involved in one of these this past year. Luckily I did not take any orders from the company....