I put the Tool from Hell to use today for the first time.  And then discovered that I had apparently not tempered it.  So I had to defile it in order to get a hard working edge upon which to pound (that is why I am looking so sad in the pics).  I did use the scratch wheel to get rid of the black yuck-y-ness.  But I didn’t go to the trouble of doing a mirror finish on the part that I had to mess up temporarily.  So I have a chasing punch that is half mirror finish and half satin finish…..so it goes.  As long as it does what it is supposed to with out losing its shape, I will be happy.  I started on a project that is half chasing, part engraving and part cutting out.  This celtic design will be engraved a bit (which is what I practiced today), and then I will chase the regions where the design weaves under itself to help create the illusion of depth.  And when that giant head-ache is out of the way, I will use a hand saw to remove all the excess copper. 

On a related note, I have decided to willfully mandate upon myself engraving practice everyday.  It is definitely a perishable skill and in the few days that I have taken a break from it, I can tell that I had regressed a bit.  Probably a smaller bit than my perception of it, but I do want to be more than just a functional engraver.  So that is one of the things I am going to do at least an hour or so a day.  I did work on another celtic design late today and I was feeling back in the saddle about a quarter of the way through.

I also spent some time working on my drawing skills.  I can draw on my computer decently, but pencil and paper drawing is proving a bit more problematic.  But I expect that it is like everything else here.  I will struggle some but with patience and practice, I will get better…..