I finally learned how to weld!

One of my favorite pastimes is going to art festivals and craft shows with friends and family who can appreciate the arts, like my sister, my mom, and my friend of 20 years, Beth Church. These women are not only talented, but encouraging. If my mom would see something she liked, she would expect me to study how the piece was put together, commit it to memory, and duplicate it for her when we returned home.

Sometimes the expectations were a little daunting. But I couldn’t say “no” to my beloved mother. My sister and Beth believed in my abilities so much, I didn’t want to disappoint them, either. Regularly, when my mom would take an interest in something—a lawn ornament or tiled gazing ball—Beth was in my ear saying, “Sandra you could totally make that.”

Some lawn decorations were all metal; some were miscellaneous auto parts welded together to make flowers; some were a mix of glass, metal, and recycled materials. All were interesting and had personality. However, I didn’t have the tools and resources to make art like this, and I thought, “Someday, I’ll learn to weld, and I will be able to make art like this.”

When I had an opportunity to sign up for an artistic welding class through Ivy Tech Northeast’s new IvyLiving program, I jumped on it. For just over $100 I would learn to weld, create art, and cross “learn to weld” off my bucket list! I had been waiting for this opportunity for more than 20 years. This was too good to pass up.

Now when Beth sees metal lawn art and says, “Sandra you can totally make that,” I’ll be able to respond with a confident, “Yes I can.”

Artistic Welding instructor, Brian Barnes, teaches the class about safety and how to create an optimal weld.

Artistic Welding instructor, Brian Barnes, teaches the class about safety and how to create an optimal weld.

Ivy Tech associate professor, Sheri Dunlavy receives instruction before making her first weld.

Ivy Tech associate professor, Sheri Dunlavy (at right), receives instruction before making her first weld.

Most of the parts and pieces we all started with. Some brought in springs, horseshoes, washers and other parts to embellish projects.

Most of the parts and pieces we all started with. Some brought in springs, horseshoes, washers and other parts to embellish projects.

Me and two of my final pieces.

Me and two of my final pieces.

Jack Dickson and his final art.

Jack Dickson and his final art.

Check out more photos from the welding class on the College’s Flickr page. To get on the mailing list for upcoming IvyLiving classes, email Aja Michael-Keller at amichael8@ivytech.edu.

One thought on “I finally learned how to weld!

Share a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s