This fireplace screen nestles perfectly in its fireplace nook, inviting guests to fall under its spell...
Kicking around ideas and sketches via phone and e-mail, the client and I honed in on requirements for a fireplace screen: custom size, minimal weight, and then all of that squishy ‘design’ stuff...
I wasn’t striking a chord with her with my initial design sketches, so the client took the lead and provided a Wiccan symbol which she found attractive.
I was happy to work from this image, but I needed to put my own mark on it. The client allowed me this critical freedom. (This commission was a perfect example of collaboration between client and artist.)
Aside from original design, there were other practicalities to consider, such as the joinery/attachment points when translating a symbol into a 3-D object. Also, I chose to omit what I considered ‘extraneous’ lines in the original symbol.
At a face-to-face meeting, we combined elements from various versions of my sketches. Once a final design was settled upon, it was time to light up the forge...
The fireplace screen’s elements were made from 1” x 1/2” steel bar, the feet from 3/4” square bar, and the frame from 16-gauge sheet steel. The art dies on my 25 lb. Little Giant power hammer were used to achieve the delicious texture on the decorative elements. These decorative elements also provide structural support to the frame.
Overall dimensions are 25.5" tall x 34" wide x 6" deep.
A big thanks to Tom the Blacksmith from Wimberley, TX, for sourcing the screen mesh for me. Sandwiching and riveting the mesh were the final steps. I used 1/4” rivets around the frame and larger rivets (3/8”) in the corners for visual weighting.
The screen was sealed with a paste wax, requiring minimal maintenance over the years. Plus, I’m available to offer a refresher course on maintenance when need be...
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