Beginning artists may become frustrated while learning new skills because of the time it takes to complete their first projects.

Beginning artists may become frustrated while learning new skills because of the time it takes to complete their first projects.

In the McPherson Arts Alliance metalsmithing classes taught by Lori Martin-Price of Inman this summer, she aims to encourage students by guiding them through simple projects they can take home on the first day. This always leaves them wanting more.

“That always gets them excited,” Martin-Price said. “I’ve had multiple adults think it takes a whole series of classes to get one thing done, but by the time they get done with the first class, they say, ‘Wow, that’s amazing.’

“They get that instant satisfaction. They walk out the door, they show friends and family and then they’re all amazed and say, ‘Wow, you did that?’ Then they’re so excited to come back.”

The instructor has been teaching adult and children’s classes this week. In the children’s class, they have made several types of rings and bracelets with brass, copper and eventually sterling silver.

In many of their projects, they filed the ends to make them flat, soldered them together with a torch, placed it two liquid solutions, sized it to fit and polished it for a shiny finish.

For Dylan Shepard, 13, soldering is his favorite part. This is because the way the metal changes appearance in a short amount of time.

“I think it’s so cool that a little spark can get a giant flame going and eventually you can use that flame to make stuff like this,” he said, holding up a ring he had finished. “When you’re turning it and that first glimmer of a really shiny part after it’s been polished and it’s turning toward you is really cool.”

Maisie Edmonson, 13, said she is taking the class because she knows she wants to study art and wanted to take as many summer art classes as possible in order to gain more experience. She hopes to major in art in college.

“I just think it’s fun creating things, and all art is different,” she said.

Martin-Price, who is also a teacher at Elyria Christian School, has enjoyed watching all her students learn.

“That’s always an exciting thing to see them excited; learning the process, understanding it and getting more creative each time,” she said. “I think it’s awesome for people to have that creative outlet. It can be a great stress reliever. Being able to express yourself, your emotions, your feelings, your creativity and whatever else it is you do, it’s very important.”

Information about other McPherson Arts Alliance art classes can be found at or by calling 241-5774.

Contact Jenae Pauls at and follow her on Twitter @PaulsSentinel