Engraving Arts at Emporia State University

In the Fall of 2006, Emporia State University started the first BFA degree in Engraving Arts. The program is funded through an endowment provided by the Glendo Corporation, where our engraving tools are produced. In the program, students learn traditional push engraving as well as operating the GRS pneumatic gravers. When I took over the program in the fall of 2007, the program was primarily print based.  It has evolved since then to integrate found objects and metals/sculpture/glass.

Pictured below is engraving arts major, Anneliese Narcisi.

In the beginning course, students learn to control depth, width and fluidity of the engraved mark. After becoming familiar with the tools, learning to render form exclusively with line begins. There are number of crosshatching projects that gradually build the student’s confidence in rendering linear tonal values. To the left is an example of a drawing project by Ashley Roudebush where she translated tone into line.

This eventually leads to the student producing a project where they integrate what they have learned  in drawing into an engraving. Below is a bracelet project ( that will be eventually be bent) by HeeYeon Lee.

More recently a more intensive approach towards methods of traditional surface ornamentation has been a part of the upper level class. This semester we worked on an Art Nouveau style, English Fine Scroll and American Scroll styles.

Below – Mitchell Lurth – Engraving on brass pendant  and color enamel.

Below – Stephanie Crosby

Below – Peter Shoemaker – Practicing English Fine Scroll

This program has afforded my students to work in a cross-disciplinary fashion with metals, found objects, sculpture, glass and printmaking.

Peter Shoemaker – “Richard Ramirez”

Mitchell Lurth – Engraving and stone setting on pendant

Anneliese Narcisi – Intaglio

Daniel Reeves – Engraving on Pocket Watch

Engraving majors also have the opportunity for internships at the Glendo Corporation where they are paid to engrave projects. That’s right…PAID! They also have access to the newest tools coming out and have a personal studio bench set up with a microscope and variety engraving goodies. They also have the opportunity to interact with visiting engravers and take one-week workshops offered at Glendo.

For more information about the program, please email me at jehlers (at ) emporia.edu.

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