This course is intended to introduce you to the basic skills of the blacksmith, the techniques of working hot metal in the forge and to the implications of these skills for design and form.
You will work on the following: detailed use of the fire, drawing down tapers, upsetting, bending, punching, twisting, welding, splitting.
By the end of the course you should have had a good introduction to the techniques of the blacksmith and you should feel more competent with understanding and recognising how these techniques are applied in decorative and sculptural metalwork. You should be able to confidently undertake further explorations of this fascinating and rewarding craft.
If you wish, bring ideas with you in draft form and, if time allows, tuition is given on a one-to-one basis according to the ideas presented. Ideas may need to be adapted for the time available.
Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above
Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.
6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).
8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.
Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.
From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).
Evening working - students may have access to workshops, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.
Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.
Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.
(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)
Please note: This course is held in the Forge which is 10 minutes walk from the main house through the walled garden, or can be accessed by car. We have morning coffee and afternoon tea at the Old Dairy but return to the main house for lunch. Tutor supervision is required at all times when students work in the forge. The tutor's instruction on health and safety will include access to and use of the power hammer.
"Learning new skills and working at the forge, the forge itself is tremendous and made the whole experience all the more memorable. Enthusiastic, attentive and knowledgable teacher full of character and good humour."Stephen, 2018
Andew, an experienced artist, craftsman and tutor, trained at the Royal College of Art. He has a large portfolio of architectural and public art commissions, from sculpture to functional metalwork. Andrew has substantial teaching experience at University level and has been teaching metalwork at West Dean College since 1987.