contributed by Julie Sanford
A few months ago I was planning my trip to attend the SNAG (Society of North American Goldsmiths) conference in Seattle. I was getting excited about who I would see and asked a colleague if he was planning to go, his answer surprised me. He said he had been to several and although the conferences were fun, they didn’t offer much for his professional development as a goldsmith. He suggested using my resources ($) to attend a Masters Symposium class at Revere and I looked into it. I have to admit, I have been a jewelry maker for over 20 years and have never taken any formal goldsmithing classes, the Master Symposium classes looked especially intimidating. Trying to figure out where I would get the ‘biggest bang for my buck’ and where my skill set would fit in, I opted to sign up for two fabrication classes at Revere. I am so glad I did!
The first was Fabrication 5, taught by Vasken Tanielian. In three days we made a crocheted sterling chain with a fabricated barrel clasp and two basket settings. I had never measured so much in my life! I had to get my own set of digital calipers…good thing Otto Frei was right next door.
The second class was Fabrication 6, taught by Alan Revere. In this class we got to choose our projects from a box that contained close to a hundred pieces of jewelry. There were rings of all kinds, chains, complicated clasps, bracelets and hinged pieces. Tough to choose! I made a hollow donut ring, a gallery ring with a tapered bezel and started a third ring, another hollow construction. It was a great learning experience, each student was working on different projects and I tried to watch every demonstration. Most of the students had been together all the way through the program and it was fun to watch them interact with each other, their medium and the teachers.
Alan Revere is very patient, encouraging precision and efficiency every step of the way. He is also an excellent teacher and expert goldsmith. I learned so many new bench tricks and techniques. I can’t wait to see how my work will evolve from here!
.Whether you are new to fabrication or a seasoned bench jeweler, I highly recommend classes at Revere. The office staff and teachers are friendly, welcoming and professional, the facility is well equipped and the curriculum is extremely comprehensive.
BTW, Hanging out for a week in San Francisco was super fun too!
I am so glad I took my friend’s advice and went to Revere. I look forward to taking the Masters Symposium Classes there in the future. To see this year’s Master class schedule visit: http://www.revereacademy.com/classes/symposium/
To see a few more pictures of my trip visit my facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Julie-Sanford/37404771309
PS, I still want to go to the SNAG conference. :)