About Metal Clay: Gold, Silver, Bronze, Copper.
Metal Clays have revolutionized the jewellery-making process. These materials are initially as soft as clay. After they are fired, however, they become pieces of 99.9 % pure silver, 22 karat gold, bronze or copper. The speed and creative options presented by metal clay have captivated a large international following of both jewellery artists and industry professionals. JDMIS maintains an excellent relationship with the manufacturers of these amazing products and exclusively offers its students the most up-to-date techniques regarding their use.
The use of Metal Clay is both an art and a science, allowing students to focus on creative expression instead of outdated techniques and expensive tools. In all of our metal clay jewellery classes, students are given instruction and then, with the teacher’s advice and guidance, immediately begin to design and create.
Extend your knowledge and experience beyond fine silver to incorporate other materials, both new and traditional. Work with different metal clay alloys to produce unique jewellery. Discover the creative opportunities of glass fusing and how to incorporate glass, precious metal foils and metal clays together to stunning effect. Learn additional setting styles for faceted gemstones and cabochons or raw gem materials. The programme consists of six projects divided over six days and a final day of project work and assessment.
1. Setting of materials that cannot be fired
There are both technical and creative challenges to the use of gemstones and organic materials that cannot be fired. Using bezel wire it is possible to design and create in stages – setting natural materials after firing your metals and assembling findings made from different alloys after firing and finishing. Your first project involves setting a natural mineral cabochon and incorporating a pre-fabricated 925 Silver pin/clutch finding.
2. Advanced Carving and Modelling Techniques
Master the creation of crisp lines and accurate symmetry as well as invisible joins and effective repairs so as to produce quality, professional looking jewellery with sharp features. Your second project involves accurate reproduction of carved patterns and extended pre-finishing techniques to ensure perfection once the design is fired and polished.
3. Glass Fusing
Learn about the characteristics of coloured glass and how to properly evaluate and combine glass of different refractive indices to form creative fused-glass centre pieces. Explore different methods of fusing glass using electric and microwave kilns. For your third project, you will produce one or more creative glass elements for setting into silver.
4. Glass Setting
Use your glass creations from the glass fusing session to combine glass & metal clay silver, with an emphasis on setting and firing techniques that will not damage the glass components. Practice safe handling, fusing and firing and cooling of mixed glass and silver elements. Finally use correct polishing methods to make these glass & silver designs stand out.
5. Advanced Stone Setting Skills
The flush-setting technique can be used to accurately and securely set gemstones on a wide variety of surfaces. For your fifth project you will set large numbers of small gemstones on a brooch design of your choice. This technique of ‘encrusting’ (covering a surface with small gems) is used to perfect your advanced stone setting skills.
6. Quilling techniques with pater-type clay
Perhaps the most unusual and unique type of metal clay is the paper-type. By infusing fine silver powder into an absorbent paper base – artists can now fold and cut silver as easily as paper! Using this paper type to create fine strips that ‘quilled’, your sixth project will emulate traditional filigree or even cannetille techniques seen in the most elaborate jewellery styles.
7. Professional Finishing Techniques
Master your finishing techniques using both hand and power tools to ensure refined, professional-looking polish and shine on each of your projects.
Participants receive over a hundred grams of pure silver (and over 300 grams of Copper, Silver and Gold as they progress through all 4 of our Powder Metallurgy certifications), gemstones and a full-set of tools.
Like all JDMIS courses, students receive everything they need to complete all their coursework. This course includes all the tools and reference and jewellery fabrication materials needed in order to immediately start producing their very own pieces of jewellery.
This course offers a practical hands-on experience. At the end of the workshop, participants will have produced one or more pieces of jewellery.
NM100 - New Metal Technology 1: Creative Silver Modelling Techniques
Next Steps (Powder Metallurgy Specialisation):
NM300 - New Metal Technology 3: Advanced techniques with Moulds to Gold
Next Steps (Complementary Metal Arts Specialisation):
MS100 - Traditional Metalsmithing 1: Foundation Metalwork Skills and Experience
Next Steps (Jeweller's Knowledge):
GT100 - Jewellery Trade Practices 1: Gem and Jewellery Trade Secrets and/or
FT100 - Jewellery Fashion Trends 1: Epic and Contemporary Trends
Participants attending and completing this programme as a stand-alone certification can choose to enroll for the Precious Metal Arts Diploma.
1 week (Full-time), or
5 weeks (Part-time)
JDMIS runs week-day, weekend and weeknight courses for this popular course. JDMIS also has flexible make-up schedules and graduates can return without cost for refresher courses (subject to availability).
Course fee is inclusive of GST as well as all tools and materials provided during the course.