Start Here November '21

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Page 59 of 102 55 S T A R T H E R E 2 0 2 1 After I returned to the studio with the decanters, I realized what I would be up against: not just curves, but planes that curved away from any straight-on view, which would make it somewhat difficult to see what might be etched on the surface. The best bet was the wider transition area between the large container for the libation and the neck of the decanter itself. The spout of the decanter was crowned with a heavy crystal stopper that had a flat surface. We had to establish the circumference of the decanter and the curvature to be able to get the text to line up with the curved surface. We created the layout so that the text would wrap around the neck of the decanter on the only relatively flat surface of the object. Besides the text, we added a silhouette of the shoe the customer submitted to either side of it and, in addition, we also added the shoe to the flat surface of the stopper. When we submitted the design to the client, she wondered if all the shoes could be represented in color. Looking at the elegance of the decanter, I decided that that would make the whole object look a bit gaudy considering all the colors that were present in the shoe. It did not take much to convince the client of that and so the decision was made to only color the shoe on the stopper. Blasting The blasting process was, as usual, the least time-consuming step of the overall project. It took much longer to apply the stencils to the curved area and make sure that the text appeared more or less in the same spot on all decanters. After the stencil application, the next step was also crucial: covering up any and all parts of the decanter that should not be blasted. At $100 each, I did not want to have any mishaps and be responsible to replace any of the items. We used quite a bit of My painting stand was a cling wrap box with holes cut into it. You can see the blasted stoppers and my sample of the colored shoe. All shoes painted; the bottom line in silver represents a silver platter.

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