l make contemporary jewelry with many materials, Mokume Gane being the most dominant. I use copper and silver because of their similar working characteristics and contrasting color. I'm inspired to use wood as it complements the Mokume Gane patterns. Fragments of maps find their way into one-of-a-kind pieces if the place has significant relevance.
Eric has been working with the Mokume-gane technique for nearly 20 years. Drawn to the organic wood-like patterns, it is the primary material in his jewelry and the focus of his workshops. His goal is teaching jewelers and metalsmiths a low-tech, low-cost, and efficient method to making traditional diffusion bonded Mokume-gane. He lives in Silver Spring, Maryland with his printmaker partner, Gretchen and adventure dog, Carmela.
Mokume Gane, a technique born out of Japanese metalsmithing translates into English as “wood eye metal”. It is a time consuming process where two or more different metals are alternately stacked, clamped and heated to high temperature. The result is the lamination of all layers into a solid mass of metal, or billet. The billet is then prepared for patterning by forging to half its original thickness. The pattern is started by carving through layers and forging the billet even thinner, or by bumping the surface and grinding through the first several layers. In both cases a very organic wood grain pattern develops. The billet is now usable as sheet metal which can be formed, forged, and soldered.