Jennifer Shirley - Indianapolis, Indiana






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The objects that I make are reflections of things that I encounter in daily life. Patterns, textures, forms, people I meet, places I’ve been and even music that I am attracted to seem to appear in and inform my work. Using narrative and telling stories with the things that I make is becoming more and more important to me. The stories of our lives are what connect us all and the narrative side of my work is a never ending world of things waiting to be made. My exploration and the adventure of finding new and interesting techniques and materials to deliver my work keep it an exciting challenge to create satisfying objects. The wood and the lathe are just the vehicles that I use to make the things that I make.

Demo titles and descriptions

Easy Embellishing even a 5 year old can do!
In this rotation we will be exploring the opportunities that our work lends to being decorated with texture and patterns and motifs in a variety of methods. With the techniques and materials that I introduce you will be able to personalize your projects at home in order to distinguish them as your own, and allow them to stand out from the crowd.

Big Designs in Little Packages-
In this rotation I’ll introduce the joys of turning small scale projects. I’ll demonstrate a small shallow dish perfect for embellishing and if time permits a small hollow forms as well. I’ll share some of the special tools and jigs that I use to make smaller scale objects. I’ll also talk about the importance of scaling down embellishments in order to suit the smaller scale project. We’ll also discuss the importance of really good forms for small scale work.

Copper Lidded Containers
In this rotation I will demonstrate how much fun it is to incorporate metal into your work. I’ll show you how to hammer and anneal copper and form it to make a domed lid for a simple to make turned vessel or bowl. I’ll show you how I form the copper by heating, hammering and annealing it. I’ll also show you how to solder two pieces together to make a post for a finial.  Finally we will discuss how important it is to incorporate a finial that accentuates the vessel and any embellishments that you may add to the piece.