My First Silver Bowl
This is the first bowl I raised during Malcolm Appleby's symposium in 2017.
Symposium's in the artistic world are a lot more than just a simple conference to discuss our work. It is a gathering of creative people to share knowledge, to teach each other techniques and learn new skills.
Malcolm's symposiums are gateways into new designs and craftsmanship. The symposium in 2017 lasted for a week and included many artists from different backgrounds, for example; silversmiths, jewellers, engravers and basket weavers. During the week everyone had their own pieces to work on, but most of the time was spent trying their hand at something new - experimenting with different tools and materials.
The 'something new' for me, was learning how to raise a flat circular sheet of silver into a textured bowl that can fit snuggly into a hand.
One of the silversmiths attending the symposium guided me through the essential steps to raise my bowl. The process is completely fascinating! Raising the silver on a steal stake using a raising hammer, then annealing the silver (heating the silver to remove the internal stress to soften the metal), before continuing to raise again.
The trickiest part was judging where the hammer meets the silver, because the steal stake has to be directly under where the hammer hits. You can see in the third image the difference of diameter in the bowl as the bowl was raised.