Convergent Series

learning, using & teaching metal clay, and other aspects of life

PMC Conference: Demo Sessions.

Posted by C Scheftic on 2010/08/13

Most of the lectures and demos were held in what I think of as oversize classrooms at Purdue. (I have, myself, taught in “regular” classrooms (seating up to about 40 students) and in large “lecture hall” settings (holding many hundreds of students) but these are somewhere between those two. Almost as big as a small auditorium (where I’m used to being down in a “pit” looking up at everyone) but with the “flat” aspect of a regular classroom (forcing the teacher to be up on a stage). With a good selection of AV resources available (and you wonder why college tuition is going up…) Hey, Carol, get back on topic about something related to metal clay. But designing and operating such facilities has been a big part of my “other life”… Nevermind that. Focus here. Oh, ok, here goes…

There were a series of “tag team demos” at the conference this year, one during each “lecture sessions” slot. What a dilemma: go to one of the several other concurrent formal presentations, or one of these? Me, I split my time about half and half. (That is, of the five slots, for two I attended a lecture, for two I attended a demo, and for one I split my time about half and half.) If the same number of sessions had been spread across seven timeslots, instead of five, I think I could have gotten to all the ones I really wanted to attend…. (There were also three “general” sessions, and several other slots with different kinds of demos.)

The third of the five tag-team demos was offered by “our” Donna along with Robert Dancik. Most of these two-person demos covered some fairly basic techniques, but it still can be informative to see how someone else works, how they handle various situations, how they describe their thought process as they approach a task, and so on. Debbie and I decided to attend this one, but sat rather far off to the side here: we figured that others who didn’t have Donna in their neighborhood, nor have Robert coming to town in, really, just a few weeks now, should have the close-up seats. Still, I tried to get a quick snapshot of Donna during one part of her presentation.

Should you ever happen to hear anyone talking about Robert and his “big tools” then this second photo is my attempt to capture one small example of that. You may want to try clicking on the image in case you can get a better idea from the slightly larger version there, but he’s holding (and this is also projected on the screen behind him) what I’m guessing might be a pound of brown (uncured) polymer clay rolled into a log shape and he’s just pressed onto it what may be a foot-wide, inch or two thick, foil-covered disc of some sort, and he’s using that to illustrate various aspects of riveting. (If you’ve really seen these up close, and want to correct or help amplify my descriptions, please let me know….)

I can’t resist (trying to) end this series of reports with one more shot of Donna, at the end of their session, displaying an array of her wonderful creatiions spread out in front of her, and projected (to sizes too big for even Carmen Banana to carry off) on the screen behind her. It seemed like just about everyone in the audience who had a camera tried to get their own shot at this point!

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