Well, 2015 has been an excellent year. We’ve shared so much content through BlacksmitHer Radio and I have to say it’s been so much fun and nothing short of EPIC!
Let’s re-cap what we’ve heard and learned:
Way back in January 2015 we found out about a touchmark that includes an anvil and gap-toothed smiley face…who was that, anyone??? That’s Dawn Raines touch mark from episode #14.
Jodie Bliss, episode #14, told us that she writes a business plan every 6 months to stay on the right path.
Then we heard straight from the owner of Nimba anvils, Jim Garrett in episode #16. How he and his brother became the owners and Jim’s latest project of 2 tons of forged bronze on a houseboat for a railing.
Randy McDaniel told us about his new Hydraulic Forging Press book that he recently published with SkipJack Press and we heard from the owner of Skipjack Press Al Krysan. They have a plethora of blacksmithing books.
Then in February Tom Willoughby talked about the cool factor and his anvil vultures in episode #19.
Tim Cisneros told us the story behind the “Wave Bench” and can you remember who said this remark? “For every hammer blow there should be a pencil stroke.” That was Mark Aspery in episode #21.
We learned that Monica Coyne’s blacksmith shop runs totally off the grid. Then we hopped over to Australia to hear Mary Hackett talk about the women’s blacksmithing group called “Blacksmith Doris”.
Then it was back to Cali (California), Weaverville in fact and the collaborative bench project that won an award at the Western States Conference in March,
Carley Eisenburg talked about being on the Ellen DeGeneres show called Ellen’s Design Challenge and Todd Daniels from NOMMA said “to affiliate, the more you give the more you get”.
In April we heard Tobbe Malm talk about his Bolt Poetry and the Iron Rose Project in Norway.
May and June episodes were filled with great interviews of the CanIronX demonstrators: Albert Paley, Grant Haverstock, Zeevik Gottleib, Ian Hope Simpson, Lorelei Simms and her 7 generations of coppersmiths on her mother’s side!
We went across the “pond” to talk to Adrianne Legge who told us about the 7 “P’s”; Prior planning and preparation prevents piss poor performance. We stayed across the pond , in England, and talked to Rebecca Knott and how she held her first hammer at the age of three!
In the heat of July Dennis Dusek talked about his black-eye and how it was messing up his make-up routine in the mornings.
Michael Budd from Ireland told us this on taking risks: “Sometimes you have to learn a new technique for a job and even though it might take twice as long, it pushes you forward as a craftsperson, artist and designer. It’s not the most cost-effective way to work, but if you always choose most the cost-effective way, you won’t produce the most interesting work.”
In September we heard from a guy that out of his 2-car garage this active duty US Army Sargent offered free knife-making classes dubbed “Blade Therapy.” The organization is known as Resilience Forge and Nate Bocker is still bringing the therapeutic effects of blacksmithing to a wider community.
Then we met Lynda Metcalfe, how she was part of a team that won the NOMMA Top Job Silver Award for a decorative railing near Charlotte, NC. It took 475 hours for her to design, build and install the 30 foot railing.
Frosty the Lucky told us all about his T-burner and the Alaskan blacksmithing scene. Then we hopped across the country to upstate NY and learned about the Adirondack Folk School and their largest course is blacksmithing.
Over Halloween Mark Aspery and I talked about the upcoming teaching tents and forging competitions at ABANA’s main conference in Salk Lake, Utah in July 2016. Do you remember the hints he gave that will help you win the competitions? Listen to episode #46.
Then we met the new Hammer’s Blow editor, Dan Nauman, Wisconnie or Wisconsin. I’ve got to tell you guys something, I went to a Rocky Mtn Smith conference in 1998, this was when I met the infamous Francis Whitaker. Anyway I remember a demonstrator there who dropped an unfinished spiral basket in the slack tub, and he reached all the way down to the bottom, found it, all the while making a huge fuss of how gross the water was in the slack tub, he’s rooting around and then pulls out a completely beautiful finished spiral basket and said “see what the slack tub can do to your iron”….oh, everyone laughed and Francis nearly fell off his stool laughing.
On a more serious note Andy Blakney told us about Quick and Dirty Tool Company’s warehouse fire, Victor Plitt talked about his new online blacksmithing forum called “The Iron Forge Fire”
Kate Dinneen told us all about the upcoming Ypres, Belgium blacksmithing event to honor WWI veterans and their families. You know they are still looking for submittals for a panel design, you have until January 31st. Yes, I am submitting a design with Dennis Dusek, it’s about the American Field Service AKA AFS. “As German troops stormed into France in the summer of 1914, the American Colony in Paris inaugurated a volunteer ambulance service to transport the wounded from the front lines to the American Hospital on the outskirts of Paris.” Some of the drivers were women which was a big deal at the time. And 18 yr. old Ernest Hemingway was a driver for the AFS and used the experience as the basis of his novel A Farewell to Arms. So that’s our idea, what’s yours???
To close out the year of 2015 I want to thank you all for listening and continuing to support the show and your encouraging emails, they really keep me going, honestly.