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Joshua Cooper Interns at Master Craftsman Studios

Published May 8, 2019

from FSU Art BFA ’19 Joshua Cooper:

“During my time as a Master Craftsman intern my responsibilities have included helping create projects with the staff and other interns for public and private clients. I had to utilize many different tools and materials that I had not previously worked with in order to help complete these varied projects. I have had the chance to further my practice in wood working with different saws, belt sanders, and lathes and carving tools. I also learned how to cut and grind glass, fire a kiln, create molds of different types, use a whetstone to sharpen tools and practice metalworking.

Out of all the tools I found the lathe particularly challenging and intimidating. I have not done many wood carving projects in the past, and this tool required a lot more attention due to its ability to quickly ruin a project and pose a danger if not handled properly, and safety precautions are not taken. While using the lathe I tried to create a more intricate design for my first pen, and the wood became very thin. This led to me catching a corner on the wood, which made a piece pop off.

I have been enjoying using enamel paint on glass. I have never used enamel paint previously, and it has come with its own properties that allowed me to treat it differently than the oil paints I am used to. I had to approach the shading differently, using hatch marks or stippling and dabbing with a brush, as the enamel did not want to create the smooth transitions found in other paints. This created a unique look I have not seen before. I am eager to see what the finished product looks like when it has been fired in the glass kiln.

Master Craftsman has been a great team building experience, and I have been able to work on projects with many different people, and try to create a unified look for each piece. I have also experimented with many different mediums, which gave me insight into whether I might want to work with those materials in the future. Master Craftsman helped to give me further insight into the public and private art making processes which includes looking at calls for artists or translating a clients idea into a finished piece within a certain budget and time frame. This experience also helped me to build a stronger work habit as I have worked on these projects and my own on a regular basis.”