EOD….Wedding Bands…..no relation.


I don’t know if any of you people out there know Jason, but all I can say is if you do, don’t let him punch you.  Ever.

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Because if you do, not only will you probably ruin a perfectly awesome skull ring, but it will likely result in severe facial lacerations.

This EOD skull ring was designed based on the client’s tattoo.  It was difficult for a number of reasons, primarily the fact that it is not a symmetrical ring.  If you set it down, it will list to the side.  The skull side has more mass.  So how do we pull this off?

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The skull has a flame theme along the side and the side with the bomb has a bunch of feathers.

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The rear is texted with “EOD” and the client’s initials.

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We’ve got bolts and bones forming a loose X, but this doesn’t make it a symmetrical piece.  The trick is, it has to look good ON THE FINGER, not sitting on a table.  Plus, it has to be at least a little comfortable to wear, so the shank has to have balance.

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The result is a badass skull ring with a lot of mass.  Not gonna be something you can wear to bed.  Adding all this detail – there’s aways a chance you’ll lose the raw energy of a hand-carved piece.  I think this ring keeps it.  IT’s still just rough enough to keep that hand-carved Voodoo style that you’d expect, but all the information is in there and it’s readable.

Added to this, I’ve just finished Ron’s wedding bands.

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And a good thing, too, because the wedding is coming up fast.  These are exactly the kind of bands I like working on.  Listen…it takes a lot for me to look at a band and think, “Damn, that’s as cool as a sculptural ring like a skull ring or a signet.”  In this case, I think we’ve pulled it off.

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First of all, they’re thick.  Yes.  This is the trick with bands.  Nobody hires a sculptor to carve custom wedding bands with the intent of ending up with something thin, brittle, and looking like it was made out of a piece of gold or silver wire that was bent around into a circle and soldered shut.  These babies are CARVED out of a block of wax as a single piece.  No solder.  It’s a sculpture, just as much as any skull ring would be.

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I’ve kept the heart and cross theme from the couple’s engagement set.  I’ve even let the cross element draw its contours into the top of the band so you can always tell where the heart is.  After all, this couple knows they’ve found each other, right?  We shouldn’t be SEARCHING for the heart.

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Along the band I’ve carved some scrollwork set into a channel.

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That’s a unique look, right?  Hand carved engagement ring, hand carved wedding band…both designed per client’s specs and made to fit together.  It’s a LOT of silver, so I don’t know how comfortable it will be to wear BOTH of these rings all the time day and night, but it’s definitely workable for regular wear.

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Definitely a cool project.

Stay tuned for more.  I’ve got some charms, a few new custom projects, and FINALLY that Zippo lighter coming up soon.



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I’ve finished what might be the final arrangement for the wax for Jason’s awesome EOD ring.

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You can tell three things by looking at this wax.

1.  You would not want to try to sleep in this ring.

2.  You would not want Jason to punch you.

3.  Jason will be unable to get anything out of his pockets while wearing this ring.

Hey, Jason said he’s cool with it so we’re going this way.  Truthfully, I’m all for it.  I’m not sure what the limit is for massive, pointy, rings, but this ain’t even it.   Still, it’s for a serious badass only.

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More waxes being worked on in the studio, but nothing super custom yet.  Custom skull rings and signets to come with the new site update (still in the works) but in the meantime it’s business as usual.    If you’re thinking of ordering something for Valentine’s Day, please make sure you get your orders to me before Thursday of this week.

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On a side note, yours truly is fighting in NAGA on February 1st so I’ve been a little distracted.  I have necks to choke.  Wish me luck.

Brown paper packages tied up with string…..


Whew.  Last of my Christmas orders are TOAST.   I’m the kind of guy who’d love getting a skull ring for Christmas, so it doesn’t seem weird to me.  What better gift can you give somebody?

For whatever reason I had a number of really interesting projects as well.  I got to work with cool people on some cool ideas.

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This is a King Skull for David with some badass shank carving.  He had great ideas for placement of a peace sign and an anarchy symbol on either side.  He also designed this great minimal feature for the centerline of the forehead.

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Can’t go wrong with the gunmetal finish either.  Just a great way to finish off a skull ring.  Gotta say, I’m a big fan of this and the brushed metal look.  High polish is always a great classic look (all my personal wear is hi-polish) but more and more I’m drawn towards these other finishes that let the sculptural planes of the ring show through.

Now we’ve got some cool sets coming up.  Mike ordered a custom Big Voodoo for himself and an awesome Little Voodoo / Pendant set for his lady.  He’s got a samurai theme going on with jade eyes and a Musashi forehead emblem.  She’s got a heart and cross motif with turquoise eyes.  I can’t talk much about what Mike does for a living, but let’s just say he lives up to the warrior theme.

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Screen shot 2013-12-16 at 4.52.21 PMI realized after the fact that I didn’t get any pictures of the back of his ring before I shipped it which is a shame.  I did a braided samurai sword pattern across the shank and it looks great.  These have already shipped out.  Hope they please.

I had another set underway for Ron.  The Wonder Twins thing, remember?  Well they turned out great.

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That’s a jawless jupiter with a full sugar treatment and a full-custom companion band I made for the lady.

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Awww.  Couples rings.  They can be the coolest freak’n thing in the world or they can be lame as hell.  This set falls into the former category.  I can tell how cool a couple is by the silver they want made and this is a cool couple.

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A little hard to tell, but those are faceted black onyx in the eyes.  I had to set them super-deep so they wouldn’t chip.

Her ring?  Just as cool.

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It might not look like it, but that’s still cast as entirely one piece.  No solder.  It has a raw energy that I really dig.  Not too delicate, not too sharp.  It’s still a hand-carved piece with substantial mass and a comfortable band.  I put some sugar carving and flowers around the shank.

So what’s next?  More on the Lucky 13 ring after the Holidays and a new ring for Jason that I’ll show you a sketch of….

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Yeah, that’s gonna be fun.  Lock and load.  Stay tuned.

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Jason’s silver fellas

Jason’s got good taste.  He’s the owner of the Mohawk and the Tibetan rings.  He recently sent me some shots of the pair of rings that I wanted to post.  (One of them featuring a mean-looking bone-handled push knife that gives me all kinds of ideas for a custom knife handle.)


I’ve started working on some new gemstone-eyed rings and….dare I say it?  It’s time to begin working on the next generation of Voodoo rings.




Tibetan ring in black

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Jason’s Tibetan Little Voodoo is finished.  I put the black finish on it last night and set the turquoise eyes with silver pupils.

Gotta say, this is one of the cooler Little Voodoo customizations I’ve been asked to do.  How many times do I get to put a nose on a skull?


That’s the raw cast above.  Looks like of funky without all the detail.  The finishing process and the stones bring it home:

So this will be on it’s way to Jason as soon as possible.  Hopefully he’ll be happy with the results.

Tibetan Voodoo

Jason, the guitar player who commissioned the Mohawk Ring a while back, has asked for another piece.  A few weeks ago he sent me a photo of the Mohawk on his guitar hand.  I always like getting shots from my clients.

He went on to say that not only was he digging the piece, but he was chompin’ at the bit to get some additional work done.  We’re going for a very different ring this time.

Actually, it’s a Tibetan skull complete with nose, turquoise eyes, and extruded sliver teeth.  We’re going to be using a Little Voodoo for the Frame.  This is a lot of stuff to fit on a very small ring, but I’m up to the challenge.

Started sketching tonight based on some photo reference Jason had sent my way.  Basically we’re trying to fit as many of these elements as we can onto the LVD frame.


Whew.  Well, let’s do this.  I did a few rough sketches and then a few rougher still.  If you look at the 3 circled images below, I think we’re onto something.


That imagery on the side of the shank on the lowest of the drawings is taken from the Tibetan Mandala.  The Skulls above show the eyebrows, the nose, and the eyes which will actually have silver pupils.

All in all, this could shape up to be one of the more interesting rings I’ve done on this particular frame.  I’ll keep you all updated.  Jason, let me know if we’re on the right track.

Mohawk Rules

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I finished the Mohawk ring yesterday and it’s on its way to Jason.


I think Jason will be quite happy.  It’s a big one – size 13.   Missing teeth came out wonderfully.  Jason, you definitely owe me some snapshots of this bad boy playing your guitar.

I’ve been in LA for a few days working.  I made a trip to In and Out burger, which in many ways is one of the greatest things to ever come out of the west coast.

There’s a joint in Atlanta called “Grindhouse” and it’s easily as good, but there are only 2 of them and they’re hard to get to.
I had to post a picture of me doing this step and repeat thing.  I do these a lot and I’ve NEVER had a picture taken during one that doesn’t make me look like I’m verbally assaulting the press.  Does that guy look friendly?
I don’t know what it is.  Maybe it’s the harsh lighting.
Doesn’t matter – I soothed myself with korean tacos.

Drawing some BVDs


I’m getting close to finishing the wax for Jason’s Mohawk Big Voodoo.  Jason’s approved some early sketches and now’s the tricky part: making sure all ‘dem purty drawin’s translate to 3d planes.  See, sometimes a great 2d illustration just doesn’t work when you actually try to wrap it around something with 3 dimensions.

Luckily I’m familiar with the Big Voodoo frame so it’s rare that I screw this one up.  I was using a very simplified image and was feeling pleased with myself when I realized I was looking at designs from the wrong tribe.

I was fitting Cree images into this Mohawk template on the forehead.  So I called it quits for the evening, worked on a few other things, towned on a Perdamo Habano cigar and a tumbler of my new favorite black rum to drown my idiocy, and took an angry nap.

Second try went a lot smoother.  I was able to incorporate some feedback from Jason into the design.  I’m using a small flint arrowhead (very relevant to the Mohawk people) and some tribal imagery from Mohawk tattoos.

So let me know how we’re doing here, Jason.

Also had a request for what should be an AMAZING custom piece from Jillian.  Jillian does a ton of rescue work with dogs and we’re collaborating on a theme for a very special ring based on her own rescued pit.  She’s requested the full sugar treatment on this bad boy right along with blue agate (protection stone) eyes based on her special fella’s actual eye color.  I’m going to incorporate some of his fur into the piece as well.  This is the kind of piece I love to work on because Jillian’s pulling out all the stops.  We’re just going to make the absolute best ring possible.

First round of sketches:

..REJECTED!  As most first ideas are.  This one was a little too geometric for Jillian’s tastes and she didn’t quite dig my idea for a stylized dog head as a feature piece.  Yes, it was an epic fail.  I soothed myself with gin martinis and….yeah, another cigar.  In all seriousness, I love client feedback and I honestly think I don’t get enough of it from my more timid clients.   It’s YOUR ring, right?  I want to make it absolutely perfect.

We’re keeping the “Mercy” script on the shank and we’re simply replacing the flower on the side with a rose.  Here’s the new sketch:

Jillian provided a great idea for a forehead featurepiece.  We’re doing a thorny rose on the side and giving it an overall more organic, scripty look.  We’ll keep the Mercy thing on the back for now.  I’m also trying out a much more narrow upper jaw/teeth idea in these sketches.  Might be interesting….not sure yet.

Jillian, let me know if we’re getting the hang of this.