Technology Chapter

As computers and other technologies advance, there is more and more than can be done to aid enameling. This chapter provides information in this area.

From talking with others, the author finds out additional uses of technology. This page provides the new information, not in the book, in the order of the sub-table of contents enteries.


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Technology Chapter - TOC

  • CAD – Computer Aided Design
  • Electronics
    • Computer Graphics
    • Smart Phones/Tablets
      new information
        • Sometimes enamels of different colors have the same value and thus are not a good match for side by side coloring. To test for this, take a photo of the colors on your device and edit the photo to black and white. If there is not much of a difference in black and white, you might consider choosing different colors.
  • Electroytic Etching / Electro Etching - see more on etching and the use of Photoshop
  • Electroforming
  • Engine Turning Machines
  • Engraving Fused Enamel
  • Machines for Scrapbooking
    • Silhouette Curio
    • Sizzix esclips2 Machine

magnifier on iPhoneMagnifier on an iPhone

Did you know that your iPhone can be used as a magnifier? I'm sure the other smart phones have this feature, but I am not familiar with them. Just knowing, though, that you have this feature will allow you to search the web for how to use it. The instructions below are for Apple iPhone (and similar for iPad) devices.

The magnifier allows you to freeze an image, enlarge it to various magnifications, and save an image for future reference. Certainly better than a normal glass. You can also use the flashlight to brighten the image or use Auto-Brightness, and apply color filters

To start using your magnifer you will have to enable it.

  • Go to Settings -> Accessibility (older versions of the OS might need you to go to Settings->General->Accessibility)
  • Tap the Magnifier feature and then turn it on.
  • The magnifer will be added to your accessibility shortcut screen. But can also be accessed by triple clicking the right Side-Button. If your device is older and has a Home Button, try triple clicking the Home Button to access the magnifier.

How to use

Once you have enabled the magnifier, access it by one of the methods described above. The screen you get is similar to the camera. Focus the camera's eye over the object to be viewed.

Then you can...

  • Magnify the image - use of the slider bar or the normal pinch press-out method you use for photos
  • Freeze the image - tap the freeze frame button button. Once an image is "frozen" the button's outer rim turns yellow. To unfreeze the time, tap the button again. When frozen, you can move your iPhone around and not have to be pointing at the image - it will still be in the magnifier window.
  • Focus better - tap the screen. To lock the focus, tap the Lock Button; tap again to unlock the focus.
  • Save an image - touch and hold the image. A "dialog box" wtih two choices appears - either Save Image or Share. Just tap Save Image and the image will be saved into your Recent photo folder (camera roll).
  • Brighten the image - tap the light icon (lightening bolt); tap again to toggle off
  • Apply Color filters - tap the 3-circle icon on the right side bottom of the magnifer. You will be presented with options to play with for adjusting your image. This might be useful if you are color blind or in some way visually impaired.

For more information, watch this video by MacRumors.

File/folder Naming

My background is math and computer science. Most, if not all, people with this background are very organized. From my experince in programming I know how important it is for code and files to be organized and easy to maintain. This led me to develop a naming convention for files and folders associated with my artwork. I offer my convention here for those of you that have trouble coming up with a file name for a piece and/or have trouble finding it.

  • Each piece I make has an unique number and a text name. I keep these consistent for all items I have associated with that piece, as explained below. I get my number from the database that I keep my information in (it generates a number with each new entry). Most people don’t have a database, but you can keep an Excel file (or another program) with a list of all your pieces, allowing you can see what is the next number available to you.
  • I don't include any blanks in my file/folder names
  • I capitalize all words. See below for examples.
  • By being consistent with the naming - using a unique number plus the title of the piece or a short phrase, helps me in these ways:
    • Easy to come up with the name without even much thought
    • easy to do a search on my computer for all files associated with it
    • because the name starts with a number, they all sort in numeric order and are easier to organize
    • file/folder names are consistent which helps keep me organized - if I know the piece’s name and number, I automatically know what the names of the files/folders are and helps me maintain my files/folder better
  • All one of a kind pieces have just a 4 digit number (I don't expect to make more than 9999 pieces in my lifetime) - for example: 3101. If it’s in an Edition then the number has as -# on it like 3101-1 or 3101-2. This way you can definitively identify a particular piece.
  • I use this number to START all file/folder names I associate with the piece. For example, I mainly make buttons for button collectors these days instead of jewelry. And with each button I give a Card of Authentication which shows a pix of the button, gives its name, number and description, including all the materials/techniques I’ve used on the piece. This is helpful for the buyer when they put the piece in a competition, but I also did it as a marketing tool so that they have my contact info. lol. Furthermore, I like to document things - such as my book or website!
  • Each file/folder associated with the piece has a text name in addition to the number. The name is either the piece’s title or a short reference. For example if I have a dragon edition, named Circular Dragon...
    • the filename of the photo of the piece would be 3101-1_CircularDragon.jpg (note the lack of blanks and the capitalization). I do use "-" and "_" as separators instead of blanks.
    • the folder for all the photos would be 3101_CircularDragon
    • the Card of Auth for the file would be or, etc.
    • If the piece does not have a name (all editions do but one of kind don’t) the file for a dragon might be 2964_ChineseDragon.jpg and the Card of Auth would be