October 2017 Torquay classes

October 2017 Torquay classes

Postby Ford » Wed Aug 09, 2017 11:21 am

Uchidashi intro class

2nd October Monday to 6th October Friday.
Class fee £650 plus optional £50 lunch plan. Coffee and tea included.

Uchidashi - The Basics. 

This process is sometimes described as being like Chasing and Repoussé but is actually quite different.
Uchidashi is best described as a form of metal raising with punches rather than a hammer and on pitch instead of steel stakes. This allows for quite high relief  and complex forms to be worked up out of flat sheet.
Traditionally, uchidashi was the process Japanese metal artists used to create menuki, this remarkable little sculptures that adorn the hilts of the Samurai sword.
Here’s a link to a photo essay showing there technique used to create a pair of gold cherry blossom menuki.

These are the two exercises we’ll be using to introduce you to this exciting technique. I’ll also be showing you how to achieve that striking ‘fire’ patina on copper, ‘hi-do’.
For the ‘snail on a rock’ exercise each student will have a plaster model of the finished form to work from.


A set of punch blanks, a hammer and scraper will be required and can be ordered from Michael Coffee who'll be making them to order. I'll send you his contact details when you reserve your place in the class.  


Uchidashi kit no:1, Comprising:
15 punches, 1 scraper and 1 hammer cost $225 and are discounted for class attendees.

We'll be shaping and heat treating the punches as part of the class and one evening will be spent demonstrating how to make up your own pitch, lumps of which you will take home with you.

Uchidashi course will also require the following basic hand tools.

A jewellers piercing saw and blades
A couple of needle files (half round and triangular) , in two cuts if possible
2 X  6” flat hand files, No: 0 coarse cut, No: 2 medium cut plus wooden handles.
A leather mallet or similar synthetic mallet.
A pair of locking tweezers
A scriber, pin vice with a pin in it.

I can provide a comprehensive list of recommended hand tools with links to suppliers. If you’re interested please email me.

Kata-kiri class

9th October Monday to 13th October Friday
Class fee £650 plus optional £50 lunch plan. Coffee and tea included.


Kata-kiri bori means ‘one-sided cut’ (style) carving or engraving. The technique was developed by The Yokoya family of metalworkers in the early 18th century and utilises a simple flat chisel to simulate the appearance of ink-brush painting in metal.

Of all the chisels used by traditional Japanese metalworkers the standard kata-kiri chisel is probably the simplest in shape and the easiest to make. Despite this simplicity it is undoubtably the most versatile chisel in terms of it’s expressive potential.

Following the classical approach to ink painting this class will explore the varieties of chiselling this technique allows by using as our practice works the ‘Four Noble Gentlemen’. These four being the bamboo, the plum, the orchid and the chrysanthemum. The brush strokes used to depict these plants are all quite distinct and will provide a rich array of mark making through which to begin to understand the full potential of this unique approach to metal carving.

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The actual painting of each of the plants will be demonstrated and analysed in terms of the chiselled approach so if you have ink and brushes you may want to bring them along too.
Yokoya Somin (1670 - 1733) was close friends with a painter called Hanabusa Itcho (1652 – 1724) and it was Itcho’s paintings that provided the inspiration for the Yokoya family style.

This is a woodblock print of one of Itcho’s paintings of the fabled ‘shishi’ and below is a tsuba chiselled with a similar theme using the kata-kiri technique. The tsuba was carved by Somin’s adopted son Yokoya Sōmin II.


You’ll need your basic metalworking hand tools to mark out and prepare your copper plates which we’ll be working on. A list of those basic tools will be sent to you when you register for the class.

Copper and polishing stones will be provided but you’ll need a set of 3 chisel blanks and a suitable hammer if you’ve not done a class with me before. A set of 3 blanks and one hammer will be under $50. Blanks will be available without hammers if you already have one. $30 for the blanks on their own. As with the uchidashi tool kit these items are also being made to order by Michael Coffee and his contact details will be forwarded to you when you book your place on the class.
"The artist yields often to the stimuli of materials that will transmit his spirit." Odilon Redon
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