This essay was written in 2011 when I was a student.
I’d planned to publish it as it was, but sadly, Barkley L. Hendricks passed away earlier in 2017, leading me to question whether to update it or not to reflect this. I decided to keep the essay as it was, written in the present tense, but the context of its writing should be borne in mind.
Sometimes I think that updating a weekly journal of creative accomplishments is a bit much. Other times I think it’s the only reason I get anything done.
It’s only because I realised all to soon that Friday had rolled around yet again and I hadn’t got the jump on anything I’d planned to work on that I got moving so I could come here and write, “look, I tried!”
I spent a fair amount of time creating moulds for other people this week, and now I can say I have a much better handle on mixing good DIY silicone moulds. so the entire process is a lot cleaner and less chaotic than it was when I started.
As for high-temperature silicone moulds, I sure have learned some valuable lessons over the last few weeks. I need to buy some more to make more moulds, but that might just have to wait a bit longer while I tie up loose ends on my current job.
The final pour… and what’s next
Of course I’d find myself melting metal in my kitchen in the middle of a heatwave. I just had to have another go to perfect my cast – or get as close to perfecting as I could.
Thing is, it’s actually not perfect, and it eats me up inside. I have a major problem with perfectionism that I’m constantly trying to tackle, and sometimes I think it’s a miracle I put anything on display in the first place.
But logical Lee knows it’s not helpful; sometimes you need to accept what you’ve got and work with it. It’s miles better than my prototype, and when I look at the finish I achieved with that, it makes me think that this one will be great when I’ve finished with the engraving.
So yeah, time to move this thing on already.
Cutting the thing off the sprue with a hacksaw was bad enough, but here comes the dirty, noisy bit – getting the engraving tools out and grinding/carving/polishing the metal until it’s just right.
I think I need a hazmat suit to cover me from head to toe this time, because I’m not showering myself in pewter particles again. Nope.
To copper electroplate or not?
Copper electroplating – another layer of faff or something I need to do?
When I first conceived of this coin sculpture, I wanted it to be in copper. I liked the idea that copper coins are usually those of lowest value, whilst copper itself is quite expensive nowadays. Plus, copper is just so pretty…
So now I have to make up my mind as to whether or not I’ll invest in a copper electroplating kit to enhance this coin (and others to follow). I’ve got more supplies on my list that I need to buy, and last month’s purchasing kinda wiped my budget out, so I think I need to get on with making more of the coin collection before I commit to their final finish.