In these last few weeks, I’ve come across some problems, continued lots of my own research, finished a project, and reflected on my In-Depth project so far. My first weeks started off very smooth and straightforward, but in the time since my last post, I hit a few roadblocks but was able to still continue and get lots done. In-Depth is always full of surprises, but so far everything I’ve learned and done has been worth it.
Meeting with my mentor was the big roadblock of these past weeks. For two weeks in a row, there were some communication issues and we weren’t able to meet for my regular mentoring sessions. However, I was still able to talk with her lots and meet with her again before this post and we even have make-up sessions set up. The main thing I did to counter missing sessions was to do extra research. I went to many websites and watched Youtube videos so that my In-Depth didn’t remain stagnant.
However, the day I did meet with my mentor I learned a lot more. I started off shaping my actual copper bracelet. My piece of copper was too long, so I had to measure out the right length and then use a metal cutter on my flat bracelet. After that, I learned how to properly blunt the ends so that I don’t get stabbed. Finally, I had to use a wrist sizer and a rawhide hammer. I made sure I chose a wrist size that fits best to me and hammered it on the wrist sizer with the rawhide hammer so that it had the right bend and no scratches like it would with a normal hammer. After that, I sanded with multiple grits and buffed my bracelet until it was finally finished. The bracelet wasn’t finished perfectly, but as I learned from Mme. Toure, sometimes there is perfection in imperfection.
Since I had some extra time at the end of my meeting I also started on a silver ring. With this one, I had to be very precise with engraving, cutting the right size, and so much more, but I’ll get more into that in my next post when I continue the ring.
This week was filled with many challenges but in the end, everything turned out as it needed to and I’m looking forward to meeting my mentor once again and expanding my knowledge even further.
Above are some pictures I took and they show my copper bracelet I finished. Although it isn’t perfect I’m really proud of what I was able to accomplish for a first project. There’s also engraved on it “TALONS 2020” so that I’ll always have something to remember my first In-Dept by. On top of it all, after I talked with my mentor I realized that with handmade jewelry there are often amazing things that come out of imperfections, and my bracelet could certainly fit into that category of jewelry. Lastly, as I mentioned before, I started on a silver ring, and the picture on the right is something similar to how I hope it turns out.
I also did some research on the history of jewelry, how cleaning jewelry works, watched a Ted ED video on the origins of gold and watched some YouTube videos on making jewelry which helped once again expand my knowledge and prepare me for my next meeting with my mentor.
History of jewelry: https://www.gemsociety.org/article/myth-magic-and-the-sorcerers-stone/
Ted-Ed Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jf_4z4AKwJg
Jewelry Cleaning: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ji06G9UXoW0
What went particularly well during the mentorship sessions?
One thing that I really love about my mentorship lessons and something that always seems to make them go well, is how fast-paced and hands-on they are. The fact that I’m able to understand the concepts fast and work on things that my mentor teaches me really allows the sessions to always be engaging. Then because they’re so engaging I’m able to learn so much more, and it makes me look forward to each day we meet.
What challenges emerged? What did I do to hold myself accountable for my learning?
The main challenge for my learning up to this post was miscommunication. Whether it was because I didn’t check my email, or my phone was turned off, there were several miscommunications that caused our meeting dates to be changed. With that several problem arose and I had to find solutions whether it was rescheduling or just doing my own research. In order to hold myself accountable, I spent extra time doing research because I knew that I was missing some mentorship sessions. I made sure that I had a list of possible websites and videos to watch, and I also took notes on my phone of questions I had during sessions that I didn’t ask. With all this, I knew that I could do extra research to hold myself accountable for the same amount of learning, and that’s exactly what I did.
What logical challenges affected your communication? What factors caused this?
The main thing that affected my communication was not staying in contact before the meetings and not double-checking through multiple forms of communication. If I was able to stay in closer contact then many of my communication problems wouldn’t have happened and my life would be much easier. The factors that caused communication problems were just not having multiple forms of communication, and even checking my email or my phone. However, now that i know this I can fix it for next time.
What three strategies could you use to improve the quality of your mentorship interactions?
- Double-check meeting days and communicate throughout the week through multiple forms of communication
- Do prior research and bring questions that I have to my mentor
- Come up with ideas for future projects so that I can do background research
Until next time, where I hope I can continue and improve even more!