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Rose Park
Salt Lake City, UT 84116

8018334578

Tattooed Tinker Studio is a brother & sister forging business. Together we make jewelry, art, and sculpture with basic hand tools and sustainable materials. Our techniques include raising, chasing, repousse, and more. Take a look around - we hope you enjoy the view!

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Blog

This blog will highlight special projects, techniques, and materials that we explore. It is intended to relate more information about the techniques behind our artwork. We hope you enjoy it!

 

Raising the Centennial Chalice... from a Flat Sheet

Michelle Fahmy

The Centennial Chalice is being raised from flat copper sheet metal. Raising is the term that describes creating a seamless vessel from flat sheet metal with a hammer (and raising is what we do!).

The plan for creating the Chalice involves raising two separate pieces: the bowl of the chalice and the base of the chalice. Once the two pieces are completed, they will be assembled to include a steel node forged from an antique miner's pick and two silver collars forged from 1915 and 2015 minted silver coins. This image shows some basic chalice anatomy to help you imagine the components coming together.

The Chalice we are making does not include all of the elements of this diagram, but the basic anatomy of a chalice is clearly illustrated here. Image from MIR Appraisal Services, Inc.

The Chalice we are making does not include all of the elements of this diagram, but the basic anatomy of a chalice is clearly illustrated here. Image from MIR Appraisal Services, Inc.

Though the bowl and the base of the Chalice are raised individually, the techniques used to start the pieces are identical. Last time, we showed you a video of the metal being cut, annealed, and quenched. That process relaxed the metal and prepared it to move willingly with Nile's hammer blows. The next steps taken for both the bowl and the base were to sink the metal, caulk the edge, and finally anneal the metal to prepare it for further hammering. These steps can be seen in the following video.

Sinking is the only step that stretches the metal thinner. This step creates the shallow bowl shape necessary to move on to raising. Caulking is the hammering of the edge of the metal. This step strengthens the edge and keeps it from thinning under successive hammer blows. Annealing is heating the metal. It softens the metal for the next step... 

In the raising process, the metal is held at a constant angle above the surface of a specialized anvil called a stake. The hammer drives the metal through the air space created by this angle down against the stake's surface. This compresses the metal and closes it into a more vessel-like shape. It is important to not strike the copper against the stake with the hammer as this will cause weak points in the finished product. It takes many, many rounds of hammering to create a finished vessel! In this video, you are only witnessing one round of raising on the base of the Chalice. 

And many, many hundreds of hammer blows later... the Chalice starts to take shape....

The Centennial Chalice for the Utah Cathedral of the Madeleine

Michelle Fahmy

We were contacted a couple of weeks ago by Father Martin Diaz of the Cathedral of the Madeleine. He explained to us that this year is the 100 year anniversary of the death of the first bishop of Salt Lake City (Bishop Lawrence Scanlan). The Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake City wants to commemorate this event with the commission of a Chalice.

To say we were honored to be chosen for this commission is an understatement. But our work was brought to Father Martin's attention because of the metal we primarily forge: Copper. The construction of the Cathedral of the Madeleine was funded by miners in the early 1900s. These miners were working in the famous Copper and Silver mines of Utah. Given this history, it made sense to include these metals in the creation of the Centennial Chalice.

If you have never set foot in the Cathedral of the Madeleine, I must tell you that it is exquisite. I won't try to describe it. Just take a peek...

Photo by Pedro Szekely; The Cathedral of the Madeleine, Salt Lake City, Utah

Photo by Pedro Szekely; The Cathedral of the Madeleine, Salt Lake City, Utah

The whole building is just beautiful, with too many handcrafted details to enumerate. Elaborate designs for the Chalice swam though our imaginations as we were brought face to face with the magnificent architecture of this historic place of worship. And then, we settled down.

We realized that in creating a commemorative centennial piece, we should be looking back at 1915 and not just be celebrating how the Cathedral now stands. The miners were the ones whose efforts allowed the Cathedral to be built and therefore,  they are the ones who should be the inspiration for the Chalice. 

And so, without further ado... these are the materials that are being used to create the Centennial Chalice: an antique miner's pick, a silver coin minted in 1915, a silver coin minted in 2015, and copper sheet metal. 

These are the materials that will be used to create the Centennial Chalice.

These are the materials that will be used to create the Centennial Chalice.

We will talk more about the design later. But for now, enjoy this video with some short snippets of the initial steps taken to prepare the copper sheet metal to be raised into the Chalice. 

These are the materials that are being used to create the Centennial Chalice for the Utah Cathedral of the Madeleine: an antique miner's pick, a silver coin minted in 1915, a silver coin minted in 2015, and copper sheet metal. In this video I am preparing the copper sheet to be raised into part of the Chalice. I find the center, mark it, and use the center point to score a circle and cut the starting disc. I then anneal the disc and quench it in water to prepare it for the next step: sinking.