Over the last few months we have been working on a fantastic jewellery project with National Museums Scotland and a wonderful group of high school pupils from Kirkland High School and Falkirk High School. The pupils have been introduced to research and design skills and a range of jewellery and metalworking techniques so they can design and make their own piece of jewellery inspired by the collections at NMS. The final pieces will be displayed at the National Museum in Edinburgh as part of an exciting showcase event in June.
Back in December, we began the project with a Training Day at the museum in Edinburgh, where, after a quick introduction, we spent the morning using sketchbooks to gather research and find inspiration from the collections. We split into different groups so that everyone could see things that really interested them. We had groups looking at geology, astronomy, cultural objects and lots of animals, and everyone gathered some fantastic research by doing quick sketches, detailed drawings and taking photographs.
After lunch, we moved upstairs to one of the education rooms to take a closer look at some of the jewellery in the NMS collection in their Jewellery Handling Box. This gave the pupils a great opportunity to see some of the work up close, and to begin to think about how the pieces were made and what materials they were made from. We had some really lively discussions about the jewellery, and of course plenty of it was tried on!
The afternoon session also gave everyone a chance to look at some of the drawings they had done earlier in the day, so that they could start to think about what their inspiration for their jewellery designs might be. For the next session each school group would be back in the classroom, learning how to make a silver ring!