When did your relationship with metal begin? I was on a seemingly endless around the world trip, and landed in San Francisco to visit an old friend. He introduced me to a crew of artists making a massive metal sculpture in an old abandoned warehouse, and I was hooked.
Did you always want to work with metal or did you consider another career path? My tertiary study was in design – primarily digital graphics and video – so it was a complete surprise to me after a couple of years in San Francisco when I realised “Hang on, I'm a metalworker."
How long have you been with Lump? Almost 3 months. Where have you worked previously and in what roles? I've worked in graphic design, lighting design, sheet metal fabrication, 6-acre massive metal art studios, bus driving and pizza delivery. The main one for me was American Steel, where I cut my chops on metal art and helped facilitate a huge art space, which contained over 100 artists working day and night. It was incredibly inspiring, and set me on the path of metal sculpture.
How is your experience / role at Lump different compared with your previous experience? Everybody I work with is intelligent, friendly, and communicative. Wow.
What projects / job are you currently working on? A big stainless steel pendant sculpture, and a huge corten steel sign for an apartment complex in Sydney, named after an old World War 2 submarine, the AE2.
What do you love most about working with metal? Unlike digital design, which I studied in, the work I do is real – metal is cold, or hot, and hard, and sharp, and hurts. Digital design is essentially fake. None of it really exists. Metal exists. Also there are no keyboard shortcuts: my grinder is my undo tool.
What is your favourite material to work with and why? Corten – I like the look of it most (raw and rusted), and it behaves itself. Stainless steel and aluminum misbehave constantly.
Proudest achievement? Probably the amount of travel I've done, and survived. Over 30 countries, all with a carry-on backpack.
When I am not working with metals, I like to ... ... work with wood. It's nice and soft.