Except for a few old friends, most of you know very little of my previous lives, and that is probably a very good thing. Way back in the olden days of the early seventies, when Ms. Shirley and I bid adieu to the US Air Force, we were faced with a dilemma. How is Alan going to support us? Well Shirley’s dad saw an ad in the paper for an apprentice goldsmith, and thinking that that that just might be the ticket to free up his spare bedroom and get us out on our own…he passed it on to me.
I applied for the job and lo and behold they hired me. I went to work for what is called a trade shop. That is a place that does ring sizing, stone setting and general jewelry repairs for local retail jewelers, and I was apprenticed to their senior goldsmith to learn the craft of turning precious metals into artful designs that the ladies would wear. I got pretty good at it, but when my instructor began withholding information and techniques in fear that I might learn too much and be a threat to his income – I went out on my own. That was back in the day when original, one-of-a-kind jewelry creation became the rage and I developed a good reputation for turning it out. Which led to a rewarding multi- year career as a retail jeweler and wholesale supplier of fine gold jewelry.
Fast forward to the present. As if I don’t have enough to do, I am revisiting my past. Yes, I’m getting back into jewelry design. I broke out the rusty old tools, grabbed some wax and started carving. You may have heard of lost wax casting . . . well, what you see here are the original wax models - in various stages of completion - of some pendants that I will be soon casting into sterling silver.
So, stay tuned for the finished products, and if anyone knows of a good and cheap source of midnight oil, please let me know! And know that the next pictures will be MUCH better.