March Classes Posted!

DATE:  February 18, 2013     CATEGORIES:  Current Classes

March class postings are finally here! For all of you who have been waiting (im)patiently for our next month’s class offerings, feast your eyes on the below. In addition to your returning favorites, we have a ton of new classes, including Sculptural Crochet, a number of new Bike Building classes, Web Programming, a number of new Electronics and Robotics offerings, Jewelry workshops, and our first-ever Metalworking Intensive II for graduates of our popular introductory MIG welding class. Although many of these classes don’t start for another month, some are coming up soon — so take a look now and figure out what you want to explore!

For those of you who prefer to plan farther ahead, know that a number of April and May class registrations are already being published — they’ll be on our Current Class Offerings page by the end of the week, and many are already listed on our Calendar and Eventbrite page.

For those self-starters who already know what you want to build, are accustomed to working on your own, and just want to learn how to use the tools you need safely, check out our full roster of Tool Training sessions, available on our Tool Training & Testing page.

Bicycle Building & Maintenance

  • Bicycle Maintenance I, 7-9pm Wednesdays, March 6-27 — You may know how to ride your bicycle, but if you don’t know how to take care of it you’ll end up losing speed, causing damage, or stranded with a flat tire. Get your bike skills in shape before the bad weather hits this fall commuter season! Taught by Seven Of Nine, regular Asylum instructor, SCUL pilot, graduate of the Broadway Bicycle School, and general bike builder/modifier extraordinaire.
  • Bicycle Maintenance II, 7-9pm Thursdays, March 7-28 — If you want to get deeper into the workings of your bicycle, this is the class for you! Learn skills like rear hub overhaul, truing your wheels, headset overhaul, and front derailleur adjustments. Completion of Bicycle Maintenance I required for registration. Taught by Seven Of Nine, regular Asylum instructor, SCUL pilot, graduate of the Broadway Bicycle School, and general bike builder/modifier extraordinaire.
  • NEW! Build Up Your Bike, 1-4pm Sundays, March 24 – April 14 – Did you just make your own bike frame at the asylum, find an old bike frame lying around, or perhaps you picked one up on Craigslist? Over four weeks, we’ll convert that bare frame into a smoothly running bike. Taught by Dough Reich, graduate of the Barnett Bicycle Institute, avid bike commuter and advocate, and Artisan’s Asylum member.
  • NEW! Bicycle Wheel-Building, 7-9:30pm Mondays, March 18-25 – Bicycle wheel building is generally considered mysterious, but it shouldn’t be! In this class, we’ll take a hub, a rim, a pile of spokes and nipples, and turn them into knowledge, and a wheel you can be proud of (and ride!). Taught by Dough Reich, graduate of the Barnett Bicycle Institute, avid bike commuter and advocate, and Artisan’s Asylum member.
  • Build Your Own Bike Frame, 10am-1pm Saturdays, March 16 – May 4 — Ever frustrated by riding a bike just not shaped well for you? Ever tempted to try and build your own frame, but not sure where to start? This is the class for you! Over four weeks, students will build a custom-fit bicycle frame from steel tubes, using lugged construction. Taught by Paul Carson, Asylum member, engineer, and self-taught bicycle designer.

Business & Marketing

  • NEW! Somerville Open Studios Marketing Talk #2: Engaging the Public, 4:30-6:30pm, Saturday, February 23 – How do you get people to come see your work? (Hint: It doesn’t happen at the last minute.) Inspirational and technical logistics of mailing lists and market segmentation. Email marketing services to physical mailings to flyers; how to coordinate this with the outreach and publicity that SOS does itself. This FREE interactive talk is presented by Jesa Damora of FunnelCake Marketing.
  • NEW! Somerville Open Studios Marketing Talk #3: Attracting VIP Visitors, 4:30-6:30pm Saturday, March 9 – How do you get those few special people to your studio? How do you attract your best clients, the press, gallery owners, critics, curators, bloggers, dealers? Why getting noticed is part of a bigger picture; why personal contact is essential; why you are as important as your work. This talk will also touch on how to price your work. This FREE interactive talk is presented by Jesa Damora of FunnelCake Marketing.
  • Business Consulting for Artists & Makers: Office Hours, By Appointment — This is a FREE service offered to Artisan’s Asylum members. Dan Trajman holds open hours by appointment for anyone who would like consultation on business-related concerns: register now to reserve a slot!
  • Arts Marketing for Artists & Makers: Office Hours, 6-9pm Wednesdays — FREE consultations offered to all Boston area artists, makers, and craftspeople by Jesa Damora of FunnelCake Marketing. If you have a project you’d like to publicize or get off the ground; if you have creative goals that require resources, leverage, and nurturing; or if you just need to rant about (and maybe get some traction on) making an art life happen for yourself, this is the place to be. By appointment and drop-in.

Computer-Aided Design and Manufacturing

  • CNC Art to Part, Sunday, March 10, 11:30am-2:30pm — In three hours, learn how to turn a 3D computer model into a network of interlocking flat shapes that can be cut out on an Asylum CNC router! Students will learn the use of 123Make, Inkscape, Draftsight, and CamBam. Taught by Judah Sher, Asylum member and industrial designer who’s been designing, building, and selling his own CNC router over the past two years.
  • CNC Programming: Intro to CamBam, 12:30-2:30pm Sunday, March 24 — Want to learn how to make your own files to run on the Asylum’s Blackfoot CNC router? In just a couple of hours Judah Sher will teach you the basics of profiling, pocketing, and engraving in this popular free CAM software. Judah’s an Asylum member and industrial designer who’s been designing, building, and selling his own CNC router over the past two years.
  • Organic 3D Modeling 12:30-2:30pm Sunday, March 31 — Learn how to make interesting organic forms using the sculpting tools inside Blender, a free and open source 3D modeling program. You’ll learn techniques that can be used to quickly model all sorts of shapes, from animal heads to jewelry. Generate your own models, warp and edit existing 3D designs, and export your files so that they’re ready to be made on a 3D printer! Taught by Judah Sher (see above).
  • Tool Training: CNC Woodcutting Router, Sundays, 3:30-6:30pm — This three-hour training runs you through the basic operations of the CNC wood-cutting router. Each student will take the machine through an entire workflow cycle, from starting up and homing the machine to part removal and clean-up, leaving with a small product they made themselves. No software experience of any kind needed. Taught by Judah Sher (see above).
  • Tool Training: 3D Printer, Sundays, 4-6pm — This class fully trains and prepares students for using the uPrint SE Plus 3D printer independently, whenever they need projects made. Members who have taken this class receive a substantial discount on materials when using the printer to make 3D models. Taught by Peter Montgomery, student and rapid prototyping enthusiast.

Digital Media

  • NEW! Introduction to Web Programming, 7:30-9:30pm Tuesdays and Thursdays, March 12 – April 11 — Always wanted to learn programming? Have a great idea for a website? Meant for the programming novice, this highly interactive class will teach you the fundamentals of programming by building a web application. Students will learn HTML, CSS, Python, and the Django web framework. Taught by Glen Chiacchieri, professional web developer and Artisan’s Asylum member.

Electronics & Robotics

  • NEW! Building Analog Synthesizers: An Exploration of Electronics & Sound, 7:30-9:30pm Thursdays, March 14 – April 18 — Join us for an intense six-week introduction to analog electronics through an exploration of sound. In this hands-on series you will build a variety of sound-generating and -manipulating circuits, leaving not only with a number of basic signal generators, but with an entire small modular synth system. Taught Jimmie Rodgers, professional hacker and instructor and Artisan’s Asylum electronics lab monitor.
  • NEW! Intro to Robotics Workshop: Light-Following Robots, 11am-5pm Saturday, March 23 — Make your first robot! This packed one-day workshop is the perfect introduction to analog robotics; that is, a robot that reacts to its environment without computers! Learn some basic electrical and mechanical engineering, gain soldering skills, build up your repertoire of analog robotic components and take home a little robot that runs after a flashlight like a cat. Geared towards students aged 14-18, but adults are welcome! Taught by Dan Landers, craftsman, engineer and roboticist, and member of the famed Project Hexapod team.
  • Quick’n’Dirty EL Wire Workshop, 12:30-5:30pm Saturday, March 23 — EL wire is short for electroluminescent wire – meaning a flexible, durable, waterproof string of light! It’s a quick, cheap, and low-skill medium with a high visual impact. In this workshop you’ll gain the skills necessary to produce long-lasting, durable, eye-catching EL wire costume pieces or decorations, and you’ll go home with a project that will wow your friends and family (or your valentine). Taught by Ecco, professional illustrator, mixed-media artist and sculptor and longtime Asylum member and instructor.
  • NEW! IEEE Presents: Basic Soldering Skills, 6:30-9pm Friday, March 29 – Looking to build electronic circuits, hobby kits, or circuit prototypes for work or play? This workshop will cover the most common types of soldering required for electronics work, including soldering components to printed circuit boards,  soldering a spliced wire joint, and effectively reworking the faults that almost inevitably occur during the assembly soldering process. Taught by Soon Wan, professional electrical and computer engineer; provided by the local chapter of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

Fiber Arts

  • NEW! Introduction to Crochet, 1-5pm Saturday, March 16 – Learn the fundamentals of crochet! This course will progressively teach beginners basic crochet stitches as they construct a jellyfish fiber sculpture. The perfect prep class for crochet newbies interested in the Sculptural Crochet class. Taught by Jessica Polka, biologist, designer of soft sculpture, author, and new Artisan’s Asylum instructor.
  • NEW! Elements of Sculptural Crochet, 1-5pm Saturday, March 23 – Discover the sculptural potential of crochet! Learn how basic stitches can be combined together to make elemental forms that, together, can replicate almost any 3D object. Taught by Jessica Polka, biologist, designer of soft sculpture, author, and new Artisan’s Asylum instructor.
  • Quick’n’Dirty EL Wire Workshop, 12:30-5:30pm Saturday, March 23 — EL wire is short for electroluminescent wire – meaning a flexible, durable, waterproof string of light! It’s a quick, cheap, and low-skill medium with a high visual impact. In this workshop you’ll gain the skills necessary to produce long-lasting, durable, eye-catching EL wire costume pieces or decorations, and you’ll go home with a project that will wow your friends and family (or your valentine). Taught by Ecco, professional illustrator, mixed-media artist and sculptor and longtime Asylum member and instructor.

Jewelry/Metalsmithing

  • NEW! Jewelry Metals II: Rings & Pendants, 6-9pm Tuesdays, March 12 – April 9, and 1-4pm Thursdays, March 14 – April 11 — Expand and refine your existing jewelry and small metals skills over a 5-week intensive series making rings and pendants. Students will use hollow construction, a kinetic element and ring with a set stone and practice advanced soldering techniques, surface embellishment, more flex shaft tips and stone setting with a bezel and prong. Taught by Karen Christians, professional jewelry maker, metal smith, tool designer, writer and educator, and leader of the jewelry studio at Artisan’s Asylum.
  • NEW! All About Rings! 10-4pm Saturday and Sunday, March 16-17 — This all-levels introductory workshop will teach you the basics and tools of jewelry-making through fabricating three types of rings: one band ring in brass, one Hopi style ring with silver wire and one special “spinning” ring in silver. Students will learn how to use a hammer, the flex shaft, basic soldering, filing, piercing, annealing, shaping, measuring and layout. No experience necessary! Taught by Karen Christians.
  • NEW! Bang Out A Bangle, 1-4:30pm Saturday, March 30 — In this fun, quick introduction to jewelry-making you’ll create one or more dangly, jangly bangles in the Asylum’s jewelry studio. In just a few hours, you’ll learn a little about texturing methods, forming, soldering, filing and finishing, and come out with a finished piece for yourself or a wonderful hand-made gift! This class is great for adults with little or no jewelry experience who want to try it in a short format. Taught by Sage Kochavi, professional jeweler, artist, and instructor and long-time Artisan’s Asylum member.
  • NEW! Tool Training: Hot Craft Studio Jewelry Shop, 6-9pm Thursday, March 7 and 1-4pm Tuesday, March 12 – Students will learn the proper use and location of all the tools in the studio and to operate the acetylene gas tank, set up a soldering area, turn on and off the tank, use the polishing set up, the rolling mill, and the flex shaft. The perfect way to get trained up to operate independently in the Jewelry shop if you don’t have time for a long-form class. Testing necessary to be checked off to work on your own — see below for details. Taught by Karen Christians.
  • NEW! Tool Testing: Hot Craft Studio Jewelry Shop, 6-9pm Thursday, March 21 and 1-4pm Tuesday, March 26 – This one session class is for anyone who has taken a jewelry class either at Artisan’s Asylum or in an equivalent jewelry fabrication setting and wishes to work independently in the jewelry area. Students will be tested on the proper procedures and safety of tool use in the jewelry area in order to be allowed to work on their own as members. Taught by Karen Christians.

Metalworking & Welding

  • Introduction to TIG Welding, 7:30-9:30pm Mondays, March 4-25 — Come learn how to weld with Skunk! TIG welding is a precise type of welding generally used to make space frames (like bicycle frames) and small pieces. Students learn operation of a TIG welder and a large range of supporting equipment for a variety of materials and joint types. Taught by Skunk, metal sculptor, graphic designer, bike builder, Grand Poobah of the nerd bicycle gang SCUL, and long-time Asylum TIG welding instructor and member.
  • Metalworking Intensive I, 7-10pm Wednesdays, March 6-27 — In this class, the instructors will guide students through professional-grade steel construction skills in the building of industrial steel stools, storage racks, and work tables for the shops of the Asylum. By the end of the session, students will have learned all the skills necessary to building load-bearing steel structures, including cutting, grinding, jigging, and MIG welding. Taught by Calvin Domenico and Edison Gieswein, long-time Asylum members and volunteers who’ve been manufacturing professionally and for pleasure for much of their careers.
  • NEW! Metalworking Intensive II, 7-10pm Thursdays, March 7-28 — Build on your metalworking skills from Metalworking Intensive I or previous experience! In this class, we will take on more advanced metalworking projects, giving students time to hone their skills on the drill press, heating/cutting torch, plasma torch, band saws, sheet metal and pipe bending tools, and introductory lathe use. Taught by Paul Carson, Asylum member, engineer, and self-taught bicycle designer, and David Dowling, professional metal fabricator & artist.
  • Sculptural Metalworking, 2-5:30pm Sundays, March 3-24 – Ecco’s popular metal sculpture class returns! This class is intended to be an introduction to sculptural metalworking techniques, featuring MIG welders, spot welders, and cold forming. Students will learn how to express themselves artistically through steel. Taught by Ecco, professional illustrator, mixed-media artist and sculptor and longtime Asylum member and instructor.

Screen Printing

  • Single-Color Screen Printing: A One-Day Introduction, Sessions 12-5pm Saturday, March 16, and Saturday, March 23 — Ever wanted to make your own custom t-shirt, tote bag, sticker, poster, or greeting card? In this one day intensive introduction to screen printing, you’ll learn all the basics and by the end of the evening create a screen using your artwork and print a one-color design on your choice of t-shirts or paper. Taught by Erik Heumiller, graphic designer, film editor, printer, and Asylum renter and volunteer.

Woodworking

  • Introduction to Wood Lathe, 7-10pm Mondays, March 11-25 — Woodturning is the art of curves and cylinders, smoothness and symmetry. This 3-week class will teach you how to use the Asylum’s wood lathe safely and effectively, providing a survey of tools, techniques and tricks. You’ll learn techniques for turning wood on a spindle and a mandrel. And along the way you’ll make a few pieces to take home. Taught by Dan Landers, carpenter, electrician, electrical engineer, and wood buff.
  • Woodworking: Build a Chair, 7-9:30 Wednesdays, March 13 – April 17 — In this new fast-paced introduction to woodworking techniques, learn to build a piece of attractive wooden furniture (in this case, a wooden kitchen chair) from start to finish. Learn to work rough lumber to finished surface, introducing every major tool in the shop on the way. Appropriate for beginners and those looking to expand existing skills alike; tool training and testing available for complete newbies. (Class fee also includes one month’s unlimited membership to the Asylum.) Taught by Chris Fitzhugh, returning Asylum instructor, lifetime woodworker, and robotics entrepreneur.

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