Today we explore the special INCISIONE lesson within the Jewelry Making course; Incisione refers to the traditional Florentine-style engraving technique. We will be following how to decorate leaf-shaped pendant head with delicate engraving.
Incisione technique requires engraving techniques, but our students of Jewelry Making course also learns it as a part of its curriculum, so they can use the technical knowledge to learn incisione.
The engraving work is performed by applying wax over the wooden base, and fixing the metal on the wax.
The shape of the base may differ according to what has to be produced, and often students create their original wax base to facilitate their engraving work.
At the beginning, students exercise a pattern (see the upper part of the copper plate) to practice engraving differentiating curved parts and corners differently. Next is practicing engraving their own name to practice engraving letters with different intensities. Then, they proceed to more complex design.
Now, back to the pendant head. The pendant head is prepared with smooth surface, where leaf’s texture will be expressed by creating random scratches with a W-shaped chisel (called “Ciappola rigata” in Italian).
The first time, the scratches are engraved on the entire surface of the work, in the direction from the lower left to the upper right part. The second time, from the upper left to the lower right part, thus the lines made at the first time and at the second time are crossed.
Following, we carve the veins of leaf, this time employing a flat chisel called “ciappola piana”.
Thanks to the effect of the texture on surface, the entire leaf shines brilliantly at each angle. Isn’t it beautiful??