Sunday, January 24, 2010

The Lecture,an Aquamarine and The Fish.

I had a new experience the other day.
There was this tour group called Gems and Jewels that wanted me to give a lecture on jewellery.
Anne and I had no idea what to expect, so I sort of prepared the whole gamut of things I can speak of.
As it turned out, they were a bunch of delightful ol' folks who did the tour just because they liked jewellery and gem stones---my kind of people, to be honest.
Luckily you can gooi some serious action in a workshop if you like.
So I started with some melting and rolling

Then I went onto the whole casting process, showing the master/mould/injecting thing
And ending up with an actual cast.
That is always punchy, but you can make a big doos of yourself if things go wrong.
Luckily it all went well.
Then onto gemstones and gem cutting.
Believe me, if you want to get 'ol bright eyes fired up and into the motor mouth mode, just ask him to talk about gemstones and the various processes connected to them.
Eventually the tour leader had to stop me because the two hours were up.
It felt like a half hour to me.
Anne did the hostess/co-ordinater thing as good as she always is.
Like these were the snacks she made, just sommer on a workbench.
Check the bench grinder in the top left.
Right next to the salmon cream cheese stacks.
It becomes more understandable why I got a boep..
I got this Nigerian gem dealer who I buy rough from.
Believe me when I tell you that dealing with Nigerians is a whole different exercise.
They could be called--- uummmm--- slippery, for want of a gentle description.
But eventually, I received some nice aqua crystal.
Which I carved into this shape, at about 7cts.
I would have had a better recovery, but the fracking stuff had a crack that kept running, and I was only able to kill it halfway up the stone.

This pic has a green overtone, but that is just the photo picking up the background.
It is a nice flawless aquamarine now.
Soon to replace the sold one on the front page of my website.

In high season all the mega yachts pull into St Maarten.
And then the broken stuff starts appearing in my workshop.
From overblown Italian vases to seriously fugly stone carved fishes.
This one's tail had been broken off by one of the crew members.
So I used Hxtal to start and then filled up all the chip with a epoxy resin, layer by layer.
Then I sanded and filed the resin flush.

Nearly finished.
I have not the faintest idea what this stone is.
Suffice to say that it is very soft, like about 3 or 4 on the Mohs scale, works like soapstone and chips like calcite.
And has a colour called 'shutter', that is a mixture between shit and butter.
Anyway, the work puts porridge on the table, so who am I to moan......
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