On being a serial hobbyist and why metalsmithing holds my attention

On being a serial hobbyist and why metalsmithing holds my attention

I have always been a bit of a serial hobbyist. Throughout my life, I've tried so many different arts and types of crafts. I had a closet full of embroidery string, different types of beads, paints, colored pencils, you name it. In high school I had the privilege of taking a 3-D art class, which was basically art focused not on drawing and painting but rather on wood, ceramics, and metal. That class was my happy place and I got to try so many different things, from designing a large paper mache of our school mascot, a frame for a mirror, and throwing clay on a wheel.

I've touched on this before, but after high school I kind of gave up anything artsy for a while. When the pandemic hit, I was going on 7 years without any artsy-type things in my life, and also realized I was sorely lacking any hobbies. This lead me to again trying many different art forms, including: crocheting, embroidery, sun printing, sewing, and photography. At first I really enjoyed them all, but I quickly got bored.

I started following a handful of incredible metalsmiths on Instagram and instantly was hooked and hyper-focused on needing to learn this art. I was really worried that metalsmithing would turn into another serial hobby, because I've tried so many before that although wonderful, didn't quite stick. Starting to metalsmith is really expensive because of the investment into the various tools needed. 

Once I decided to really give it a go, I quickly realized that the beauty of metalsmithing is there will always be more to learn. From the very basics, like cutting out backs of stones, to what I've been dabbling more in lately - making my own cabs (both from fabric and stone). In 2024, I'm really excited about trying to work with metal clay, possibly working a tiny bit more with gold, and making my first bolo. I'm also excited to continue honing my sawing skills, and have recently invested in some very thin jewelry saw blades that will make fine detail work more possible. I'm hopeful that metalsmithing will always hold my attention in some form or another, because there will always be new techniques to try and ways to change things up.

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