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Master Class - James Carter

Frame It Up!

Wednesday, August 26 - Friday, August 28, 2020

James Carter

About 20 years ago James Carter developed a system to mount enamels in something besides a bezel. Over the years he expanded this concept to utilize gemstones, textured sheet, wire, and of course, enamel pieces. These techniques have earned him worldwide attention, and in this class he will share them with you.

Students will learn by making a sterling silver frame that can be designed in different sizes and shapes. After completing the frame, you will learn to make different components so that the frame can be utilized for bracelets, earrings, pendants, or other uses. The possibilities are endless.

This class will be Carter’s third Master’s Class at the Bead&Button Show, but will cover new ground. Students will concentrate on mastering components such as hinges, bails, rivets, and jump ring alternatives that can all be adapted to the basic frame. Former students will know what to expect: Work hard, stay on track, cover an exceptional amount of material, and become inspired.

Who should take this class?

This is not a beginning class. It is for students with intermediate to advanced metalworking skills who want to improve their craftsmanship and bring a more finished and professional look to their work while still maintaining their personal approach. Students need to be proficient in the following:

  • Sawing with 4.0 blades
  • Soldering with propane/oxygen or Prestolite (not with a crème brulee torch)
  • Filing
  • Proficiency with a Foredom handpiece is recommended, but we will go into what makes a Foredom superior to a Dremel and how to operate it on the first day.

3-day class fee: $1,145 plus $100 kit fee.

Added benefits for Master Class students:

  • Waived registration fee.
  • Advance registration for general classes.
  • Fun-filled tote bag.
  • Special event tickets.
  • Graduation celebration.
  • Transportation to class location.
  • Breakfast and lunch on class days.
  • Commemorative Show bead, pin, and T-shirt.

James Carter is a metalsmith artist and teacher whose work has been described as “an exquisite dream, captured in glass and gold, equally beautiful as functional jewelry or as a piece of art separate from the body.” A master goldsmith and skilled designer, his explorations into cloisonné enameling have been featured in several industry publications and exhibitions across the globe.

Carter’s work draws on a lifetime of adventure. He became a globe-trekker in the 70’s, hitchhiking through Europe then joining the Merchant Marines. His world travels exposed him to the body adornment of tribal Africa, the gold antiquities of Egypt, and the splendor of Russian gold work and enamels, all of which influence his work.

Carter earned his MFA in metalsmithing at South Illinois University, where he specialized in metals and enamels. He studied under renowned goldsmith William Harper, who taught him to create art from the soul rather than from expectations other might impose. He was awarded 1st place in enameling in the prestigious 2011 Saul Bell Design Award Competition, an international jewelry competition sponsored by Rio Grande jewelry supply. Other honors include an Individual Artist Fellowship from the Florida State Council of the Arts and several Awards of Excellence from the Trustees of the American Craft Council. His work has been shown at many galleries across North America and abroad.

Currently living in Chapel Hill, N.C., with his family, Carter operates his own school, James Carter Studio, in the nearby town of Carrboro where he teaches hands-on workshops in jewelry making and enameling.

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