Sunburst Key Holder


Sunburst Theme to brighten your decor

I am realizing the utility of keyholders and I enjoy welding them.  They are usually simple and not very big so they would be a lower priced item in my collection.  The key holder featured here is a sunburst made from a hemispherical pipe cap and square cut nails braze welded together using bronze filler rod. The nbronze joints add some interesting contrast to the grey steel.  I took it a little further and decided to accentuate it a bit.


First I coated the wire brushed sculpture with Krylon Crystal Clear Flat.  This will help seal the bare metal surface from oxidation while providing a dull matt surface to paint on. What I was going for was an warm orange hued bronze color affect on the sun. I also decided to even out the color of the grey steel with darkened silver paint.  For the accent paints, I used water based acrylic metallic paints.  I used the dry brushing technique to apply layers of the metallic paint to minimize brush strokes and to quicken dry time between coats.  I first applied a little copper colored paint to the sun to brighten it. Afterwards, I mixed some copper with bright gold to get a bronze color.  This went over the copper color and it created much depth. This was especially true after I covered the whole thing with Krylon Crystal Clear Gloss.  As you can see from the photo, it really came alive. This sunburst kep holder is listed in my Etsy shop.

Finished 3D Geometric Sculptures


3D sculptures look bulky without the weight

I had mentioned in previous posts about making dimensional shapes from sheet metal and cylinders from steel tubing.  If you read those, you are probably wondering what this was all leading to.  And the results are shown above.  Two dimensional contemporary steel sculptures made up of simple yet elegant geometric forms.  They look like solid blocks of metal but they are indeed metal.


My most recent creation is this 19 inch tall contemporary steel triangular masterpiece based on an elongated three dimensional triangle mounted on its vertex for visual effect.  To add warmth and interest, a steel strip was formed into a wave and welded on.  It was painted with colored lacquer in red, orange, and yellow in a manner to accentuate the undulations of the curve. 


The sculpture was hand welded with an oxyacetylene torch to minimize spatter and porousity in the welds.  Also, there seems to be a soothing and relaxing aspect to handling and using a gas torch.  After cutting all the required shapes for the composition, it can be a real challenge to get everything to line up just so.  To make it a little easier, I usually tack weld the forms together with a wire feed welder just to keep everything together and to prevent heat warping.  I then go over the edges with the torch flame to fusion weld them.  It is best to try not use too much of the welding rod as it creates extra material to grind off.  Once the welding was complete,  It was time for the grinder patterns to give that blazing shine you get in direct intense light.  See the photo below for a contrasting shot of the triangular sculpture in direct sunlight with deep clear blue sky as a backdrop.


Breathtaking isn’t it?



The other sculpture is a little more complicated.  It is 3D contemporary steel composition composed of 4 distinct shapes welded together.  All the shapes where given a dazzling grinding patter to reflect direct light.  Additionally, the smaller shapes where colored with tinted lacquers to enhance the depth of the reflective shine.  My favorite is the deep red tetrahedron.


What also sets this sculpture apart from the rest is the bronze filler around the welded joints.


Taking a closer look at the violet rectangular accent and you can see how the bronze really adds a nice contrast to the deep cool violet lacquer finish.



How to make a Hollow Steel Cylinder From Tubing



Cylinder from 2 inch tubing

I have been recently working on some 3D Geometric shapes from 16 gauge steel I plan to use in a sculpture.   So far, my inventory consist of a 4 inch tetrahedron, and a small rectangular box.  Before I go on to make the larger box that will be the main body of the sculpture, I decided I need one more smaller accent piece.  After spotting some old rusty 2 inch diameter tubing in my closet, I thought it would be perfect for the task.  I simple cut out 2 inch diameter disk from 16 gauge steel sheet and round them out with the grinder.  Then I weld them on to each end to the section of steel tubing I have chosen.



For starters, I decided to place one tack weld with my flux cored wire feed welder from the tube to a 1/4″ steel place just to keep it in place.  I did that becuase there are times the wire feed from the welder may knock the workpiece down if it fails to make proper electrical contact.  I placed one of my hand cut disc on the top and attached it with four tack welds.  Afterwards, I was easily able to break the tube of the steel plate due to the small size of the tack weld.  I proceeded as above to attach the other disc to the tube via tack welding.



This is the rough draft.  As you can see there is up to 1/8″ overhang from the disc.  That is from tracing the paper circle onto the steel sheet.  Might not be much to look at now but the extra material eliminates the need for filler metal when torch welding.  Yes I will be and have been welding the steel sheet shapes with an old fashion oxygen acetlylene torch outfit.  The oxyacetylene torch is the most versatile piece of equipment for the metal artist.  You are able to braze weld different alloys together,heat metal to bend or form it, pierce or cut steel, and of coarse gas weld mild steel.




The last two photos show the cylinder after is has been gas welded and grinded smooth along with the small box and tetrahedron  with an abstrasive grinder.  Not too shaby if I do not say so myself.

Updated Banner in my Etsy Shop


This a banner I recently designed on  After I saved all the changes, I uploaded it to my etsy shop.  I am trying to decide if the bright blue color really does any justice to the image I wish to brand and market.  I still have some hurdles to overcome but yesterday was a major milestone.  I sold two higher end sculptures in one day and was paid 35-40% of what my full time job pays me in a week.  Each sculpture has no more than 3 hours of solid work from start to finish.  So the way to celebrate is to give my Etsy shop a new look.

Creating 3 D forms With Steel sheet


Geometric 3D Steel Shapes for Sculpture

One of the best ways to show off color with metal sculpture is using bold 3D geometric shapes with hard crusp lines.  Still deciding on a composition, I wasted no time getting started on a couple fundamental shapes. On the left a rectangular box made from 16 gauge steel sheet.  On the right, a tetrahedron from same sheet consisting of four equilateral traingles with all sides being 4 inches.  I used my Hobart 125 EZ to tack weld peices into place and then followed by gas welding with my Harris oxy acetylene torch. Torch welding affords a smoother weld with no pin holes.  That is good news when it comes to cleaning up the shapes with the grinder. 


These are truly diamonds in the rough.  I will clean these up and create a few more geometric elements for my next sculpture.

Art Deco in Art and Designs

What is Art Deco

this lens' photo

Art Deco was a style of art and architectural design from the early 20th century. Namely the roaring 1920’s but it continued nearly until the modern art movement in midcentury. This style followed the ornate and elebrate stylings of art nouveau with more simple lines and geometric forms. Some art deco designs are indicative of the era of automated manufacturing and have a decidingly mechanical and futuristic appearance. There are reliefs and sculptures in architectural suggestive of ancient Egyptian themes due to the much publicized discoveries made during the early 1920’s

Art Deco Architecture


Chrysler building One of the crowning achievments of Art Deco architecture was the Chrysler building in New York City. It was built during the 1920s and features brilliant stainless steel deco. Incidentely, stainless steel was just discovered around this time.

Art Deco Kinetic


Art Deco steampunk This is a truly unique kinetic sculptural desk fan. It nicely incorporates the simple lines and geometric forms in art deco with the brass and mechanations of 19th century influenced. The copper dome really sets the whole piece off. The fact it was hand done shows superb craftmanship.

Art deco pendant


Art Deco pendent This one of a kind art deco pendant featuring lava and czech glass incorporates the geometric lines of classic art deco design. The finish the artist uses is an epoxy finish to give depth and definition.

Egyptian Influence in Art Deco


Eye of Horus With the historical discovery of King Tuts tomb in 1922, ancient egyptian art and design heavily influenced the art deco movement. I attempted to capture the essence of ancient Egypt in this Eye of Horus sculptureTake a look at the wood board background with the distressed faux gilded finish. It was applied over a black basecoat in the photo below.

Mid Century Design

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Mid Century or , more commonly, modern art was the significant movement in design that had its influence from the early 1930’s to around the mid 1960’s. That puts it pretty much following the art deco movement. Modernism saught to follow the organic forms of nature with simplistic shapes and forms.The modern movement was widespread as it influenced architecture globally and also furniture and art as well.


Furniture Design


Charles Eames Lounge chair A signifcant part of the modern design movement was seen in furniture. Take for instance this Eames lounge chair featured in this photo. Charles Eames and his wife Ray eames where cutting edge designers. Charles studied architexture at Washington University in St Louis where he met his wife. Together they developed many designs based on newly available materials like plastics and resins.

Modern Architecture


modern architecture Modern architecture is the design of buildings and homes in a simple unornamental design. The modern design for architecture is a look of science and technology. Usually, the designs entails the use of alot of glass, steel, and concrete.

Geometric Form


Mid century wall art The modern art movement in the middle of the last century was heavily inspired by the prospects of technological innovation. It represented a time when we were engaged in a space race and new space age materials where being produced like plastics, titanium, and superalloys. The lines and forms of this era where simple and, in many cases geometric. Many times, geometric form was used with striking color contrast that boldly engages anyone who enters the room.

Mid Century nails sculpture


Mid Century Nail Art A fairly common theme from the modern era is braze welded masonry nail art. This is one of my favorite mediums as i work in this quite often.
You can visit my brazed nail art lens to see what I have available.