Rock and Roll Skull


I got some feedback from James after seeing his Rock ‘n Roll themed skull ring pics.

He hated it.

Not really, but he did have some great notes on the treble clef in the forehead.

“Looks too much like a & sign, you dick,” he said.  Well, maybe not like that.

Hey, when your’e right, you’re right.  I went ahead and re-carved this symbol and put in some microphone-ish texture on either side of the skull’s head.  I’m much happier with the result.

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We’re not quite done with this wax yet, but getting close.

It’s funny how a little bit of ‘english’ on a symbol can completely change its readability.






We’re getting to the new year now.  Been busy.  This is what my wax table looks like right now:

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Mind you that’s after about 5 hours of sweeping up dust and polishing compound.





Okay, I’m back and once again covered in powdered wax, polishing compound and silver.

Made a big dent in the Austro – you can see the anatomy starting to materialize.

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I’ve got the eye holes drilled in along with the nose.  Next step was defining the jaw and the connective bones.

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It looks like we’re close, but we actually still have a long way to go.  Setting up the teeth is next.  We’ll block in some big gnarly caveman teeth and then use the scale of the choppers to finish up the jaw and cheekbones.  Most of my skull rings are so forehead dominant….it’s been crazy to work on one that has so much “jaw” to it.

Speaking of foreheads, I’ve finished up our guitar pick for James’ Big Voodoo complete with treble clef.

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So that leaves the sides of the ring.  We’re going to try using the mic texture as planned.  This is just the marker, which looks a little funny in silver.  You have to try to imagine these lines clean and recessed.

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I gotta say both of these rings are going to be hard to part with.  This austro skull might be something I have to offer on my site.  The original ring you see here is just for Marty, but I might do a smaller, slightly different version for sale as well.

So stay tuned through the new year.  I’ve got all kinds of projects on the burner – maybe too many.

Valentine’s Day ordering ends on January 15th, so make sure you get your orders in ahead of time!








Rock and Roll and a Caveman


I’ve started a new Big Voodoo for James.  James is a guitarist and we’re going to focus on rock and roll for this ring.

Nothing better than setting turquoise into a skull’s eyes.  We’re going to do big 8mm stones with some bitchin’ spiderweb pattern set into the eyes of this skull, which have been rounded out.

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We’ve put circles around the eyes as a subtle nudge towards the center of a guitar.

We’re also using a guitar pick shape on the forehead along with a treble clef.  I’m hoping James can take a look at this markered-up wax and let me know if we’re close.  We’ll deal with the sides of the skull ring next.  Thinking about doing a pattern around the side of the shank that resembles a Shure Microphone.

Also put some more hours into the Austro skull.   More and more, you can see that we’re looking a lot like those photo references.  That jaw is HUGE.

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How’s that for a class ring?


Just thought I’d throw this bad boy up here.  Just finished this class ring for a client’s son.   Don’t know about you, but if I knew I was getting a class ring this cool, I would have actually studied.

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A skull ring is actually a perfect ring for high school or college graduates.  The skull is a symbol for intellect and reason.

This sucker is going to FedEx right now for Xmas delivery.



Say what?

For those of you who aren’t evolutionary biologists, the australopithecus is basically this:

When I was a kid, I had nightmarish images in my head of this thing just running at me screaming.

So now, thanks to Marty, I get to carve a australopithecus skull ring.  We’re going to use a lot of photo reference here . This really isn’t a shape I’m familiar with, so I might fail gloriously.

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You can see that the jaw is massive, but deceptively narrow.  The eyes and nose are kind of on the same plane and the head is very very small.  All in all, not a good-looking dude.   Remind you of anyone?

Yeah.  Nothing fucking terrifying about THAT.  Spend too much time in an isolation tank and I’m pretty sure you turn into one of these things.

I started the wax over the weekend and have just now gotten it to where it’s not just a blob.  You can see that I’ve started working on this the way any sculptor tackles a foreign shape: by working on the major planes first.

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I began with the side profile and then started cutting in angles based on all of the photo reference I was able to collect.

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Not braggin’, but if you look at the pictures of the skull, you’ll see I’ve pretty much nailed the profile and am very close to finishing the front view.

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Although we still have a very long way to go, getting to this stage is actually a huge weight off of my shoulders.  See, we’re not just dealing with a sculpture here.  What we’re dealing with is an intersection between the complex diagonals of the skull and the rigid parallel lines of the inner shank.  If they don’t mesh, they don’t mesh and there’s not much you can do about it.  Sure, I’ll have plenty of opportunities to F this up on a spectacular level, but so far we’re doing just fine.

On a sadder note, I’m sold out of Big Voodoos.  Just sold the last 2 today.  I’m going to cast more, but it won’t be until after the Xmas break.

Stay tuned.

Life’s a Mystery


I might be just about finished with Sue’s mega-Mystery Cave.  This has been an awesome project.  Sue is one of those special clients who must come from some kind of a design background because her feedback has been spot-on throughout the entire process.

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This German symbol has now been set inside of a circular border roughly the same shape as the eyes, but not inset so the ring maintains its ‘skullness.’   We’re left with one hell of a skull ring here.  It’s big too.  It has clean lines and a subtle modern suggestion of a sugar skull, but without the sugar.  Seems kinda impossible, but with the clean lines of the eyes and the hear-shaped nose, it works.

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I think I’ve harped on this before, but just because a design is simple, doesn’t mean it’s easy to pull off.  Simplicity in form just means we’re working on a much more subtle level.   When you’re working on a hyper-detailed skull ring with all kinds of horns and cracks and anatomy, it’s easier to pull off something dynamic.  When it’s a series of circles and cubes, shit gets real.

Sue, drop me a line and let me know if we’re done or if we should try anything else.




I’ve had it with these clowns.

I usually don’t do this, but sometimes the detritus just starts to become suffocating and I need to pop a valve open.  Once again, my day has been fucked up on the highest level by the legendary stains over at….we’ll call it OOPS.


As you can imagine, I have a lot of suppliers who send me silver, stones, tools, all kinds of stuff.  Well you’re all now on notice that I’m not taking shipments from these goofballs anymore.  If you want to work with me, you’re gonna go FedEx or you’re gonna go USPS.

Seriously, these clowns are hated by everyone.  I went to their facebook page expecting to be the asshole.  As it turns out, I’m not the only one who’s discovered the canyon of incompetence that is the OOPS company:

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…yeah, they’re ALL like that.  The section is conveniently tucked away into Facebook’s “Comments by Others” section, but they’re there.  All of them.   It’s like a fail salad.

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Kinda funny if it didn’t impact my clients.  For example, I have a client waiting on a class ring with green and yellow stones in the eyes.  Well guess what?  Who knows where the fuck those stones are now because they were shipped with OOPs.  This delays me setting the stones, which delays me finishing the ring, etc, etc.

I’d guess the stones are probably with this guy:

“Stop eating my sesame CAKE.”

You kind of get the impression that these douchebags are incompetent pretty much everywhere, but I can tell you first hand that the Atlanta office has got to be the crown jewel in the kingdom of idiocy and apathy that is OOPS.

At least the facebook reviews are glowing.

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These are all within the last 24 hours and there are SO many more that mention the NAME of this company, which I’m trying to exclude.

So what’s the point?

It takes a long time to make these rings as it is, okay?  My clients are patient, patient people to wait as long as they do for these projects.  The last thing I need is a third party shipping company screwing with my time table.

So yeah, I’m pissed.  It happens.

Now what do we do about it?  How can we make this into something constructive?

By saying “FUCK YOU.”  That is: I’m going to be giving away a FUCK YOU ring for the cost of shipping.  It’s a Mystery Cave, Big Voodoo, or Little Voodoo (your choice) with “FUCK YOU” written across the forehead, on the shank, or inside the band.  First person to send me their ring size along with a cool photo of them with that big old middle finger extended in a classic “FUCK YOU” bird (something I can post on the blog, so no nudity you filthy animals).

Yes, your ring has to say those words.  Sorry, no opt-outs.  If you win and you want the ring, it’s getting those magical four letters somewhere on the ring.  We can be creative, though.  I’m open to using initials only if we must.

So send me your emails.  Again please make sure you’re cool with me posting the picture on my site!  I’m looking for creativity as well as punctuality.  I’m not just taking the first shot I get, but rather the first shot I get that soothes my rage with it’s coolness.

In the meantime, I’ll sooth myself with one of these:

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Back in the USA and carving my balls off……

1 Comment

Where do I begin?

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I was in Hong Kong again- a city I just fucking love.  A little business, mostly pleasure.  I was able to stay on top of client work while I was away, but needless to say getting back to the shop was a necessity and I’m now almost buried in silver, wax, and polishing compound.  That shot above is me at my new favorite Russian joint in HK.  Place is run by Ivan.  Awesome.  Ivan kept us thick in vodka and various delicious Russian fare for several nights.

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We ended up doing shots with Ivan in his walk-in freezer.   This is basically how I do Hong Kong whenever I’m out there.   Great people, great food, and places right out of Blade Runner where they serve steamed fish and mainland beer underneath a canopy of neon and steam vents.

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I’ve had some great projects in the works that I just haven’t had time to post about.  I’m hacking away at waxes as fast as humanly possible and the shit is EVERYWHERE . Wax dust in my clothes, my nose, my food, my hair….freakin’ everywhere.

Some cool pieces too.  For example, we haven’t talked about Sue.  Sue has ordered a mega-mystery cave.  What is that, you ask?  It’s a giant Mystery Cave with a super-thick shank and a heart-shaped nose.

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This project is stil underway, but you can see the progress above from a block of wax.  The result is a big gob of silver roughly 3/4 larger than the standard Mystery Cave.  I’m still working on graphics on the forehead.

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That image is going to end up being a German Eszett like this:

I’m throwing these shots up to get some feedback, so Sue- let me know what you think.

I’m also working on a series of King Skulls.  The one below is for James.  We’ve got “Memento Mori” on the forehead along with a crossed set of bones.

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This is good news for James since his wax is finished, but might be bad news for everyone else because I literally have 2 King waxes left (which will likely be sold in the next day or two.)  So that leaves a big empty wooden drawer where my waxes used to be.  Obviously I have a mould and can run more wax duplicates of the base template for this ring, but at the same time I’m considering terminating the line and starting a new master wax of a second series of skull rings.


Same with the Big Voodoo and Little Voodoo.   Wouldn’t it be cool to know that each version of these rings is a limited run?   That way if you own a 1st generation King Skull, you’re even MORE of a badass than you thought when you first put it on.  The second version wouldn’t be BETTER or WORSE, it would just be a little different.

Speaking of different…….

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We’re making that bad boy for a client named Marty.  It’s a one-off, so we’ll be starting from a slab of wax.  Can’t wait to see how this turns out.