Heather Doyle has designed curriculum and instructed youth and adult students in metal arts since 2003. She teaches Sculptural Welding and Blacksmithing classes at the Chicago Avenue Fire Arts Center, as well as summer youth classes for the University of Minnesota.

For adult course schedules and pricing, visit CAFAC.

For youth course schedules and pricing, visit summer youth programs at the University of Minnesota.

Oxy-Acetylene Found Object Sculpture

Torch cutting

Torch Cutting © 2008 Noah Wolf

This beginning class will focus on applying Oxy-Acetylene welding techniques to the fabrication of a sculptural project. Oxy-fuel cutting, welding and brazing processes will be covered. Learn the limitations and benefits of these processes through the design and fabrication of your own work of art. Discover scrap metal! Methods for identifying metals, surface preparation for scrap welding, along with aesthetic and protective surface treatments for finishing pieces will be covered. Additionally, we will touch on the history of art welding so that you develop an understanding of the art form's past as well as the tools to inspire its future.

Build Your Own Propane Forge

Gas forge

Propane Forge © 2008 Noah Wolf

Build a propane blacksmithing forge of your own to take home! In this introductory course, we will begin by learning the metal fabrication and welding techniques needed to build your own propane forge. Building a forge will provide you with an intimate understanding of the equipment and how to safely operate and maintain it, inspiring the confidence to use it on your own.

Metal Arts

Kid's sculpture

Student work

Kids, ages 12-15, explore the world of metalworking through art! In this class, we have the opportunity to apply basic fabrication and finishing techniques to sculptural projects. We learn about the benefits and limitations of each material and process and discuss methods for identifying metals, as well as preparing surfaces for protective treatments for finishing. Through hands-on experience and demonstrations of the possibilities available through further study of gas and electric welding, this class provides the basic tools to inspire the metal artists of the future.

Kinetic Arts

Kids, ages 8-11, have the opportunity to learn about "kinetic art" or art that moves! We make a mobile using brass, copper, aluminum and steel sheet metal, beads, wire, and found objects while learning about metal fabrication with hand tools and sculptural balance.