- One must be a fox in order to recognize traps, and a lion to frighten off wolves. Machiavelli Niccolo
Become a Blacksmith
For most people, blacksmithing conjures up images of men in the Middle Ages hammering away at a piece of metal next to an open fire, and because that image is the first that pops into most people’s minds, many also assume that blacksmiths no longer exist. They couldn’t be more wrong, however. Blacksmithing, by its very definition, is the practice of shaping and forging metals with hammer and anvil. And while design technology has come a long way since the 15th and 16th century, there is still a market for functional and aesthetically pleasing metal objects, and thus blacksmithing is still a flourishing, if under-the-radar, profession and industry.
Although the basics of the profession have remained mostly the same as time has passed, the art form has also come a long way since its origin thanks to deeper and different understandings of design as well as the advent of modern technology and computer aided design. To be a professional blacksmith in the current climate is not easy. The profession is not just about being skilled with a hammer and an anvil, aspiring blacksmiths need to be trained how to use modern blacksmithing tools; they need to understand basic design principles and strategy; and since many blacksmith programs are under the larger umbrella of metal works, they also need to learn design techniques that work for many kinds of metals and jewels.