I was always the kid who could draw the best in class....who cares?

My high school art program was pathetic....actually all the programs at my high school were pathetic.  Being named most “artistic” on the senior superlatives was not exactly what I would call an accomplishment.

At one point I thought I was going to pursue a career in law enforcement.  Wow.

My friends and family encouraged me to pursue what I was truly interested in...ART

Enrolled into the art program at Webster University in St.Louis, MO.....it had begun.


          What was this cool stuff called charcoal, clay and oil paint?  Where am I gonna apply the paper mache and stained glass skills I learned in high school?  You mean to tell me this person teaching the class is an actual “professional” artist too, and doesn’t care in what god I believe in?  (went to religious high school)  It was a whole new world, and I was certain I was now heading down the right path.  I submerged myself in the environment.


           Four years later I had my degree in painting and printmaking....um. what now?  Welcome to the real world.  So I took my expensive degree and got a job as the “paint pro” at Home Depot.  Um...ok?  Boy I sure could match a color with the best of em. 


          One day a customer was asking about my art background and if I would ever be interested in metal work....he had a friend with this company...blah blah.   I said, “yeah sure why not,”gave him my number, and pretty much expected to never hear another word for him.  Next morning at 7 am, which was very very early for me in those days, a man called me and introduced himself as Todd Kinnikin and asked...”would I be interested in metal work?”   I told him yes, but all I knew of metal is that it is cold, heavy, and hard.  He then responded with “What the f*** are you doing in bed still?...you have a job interview.”  What he meant in his own soft-spoken way, was that he was just looking for an artist, and he’ll teach me what I need to know about the craft from there. Life is all about being in the right place at the right time and had I not met Todd...  You wouldn’t be reading this.  I would probably be trying to paint and sell pretty pictures of mountains or or as one of my artist friends refers to it ...making“landscape porn.”


          All of the sudden I was working in one of the best forges in the country.  Between Todd’s mad geniusness and the unbelievable skills of a fellow artist, Claude Mette, I was learning so much so fast, and taking to it like a duck to aqua.  Steel became my new favorite medium immediately.  Before I knew it,  I was a lead artist and designer on many projects coming out of the shop.  Unfortunately my time at Eureka Forge was only about 2 and a half years but that experience was all I needed to be hooked....I now knew that being an artist/blacksmith was where I belonged.  Thank you Todd and Claude, I am still inspired by those days at Eureka Forge. 


          However, after living in the Mid-West all my life....I needed a change of pace and some new inspiration.  I moved to Fort Collins in 2003 and have been lovin the Colorado life ever since.  I spent the first few years  playing in the mountains and exploring my new state, but not really creating much new work.   Deciding it was time to maybe get back into the art world, I went job hunting.  I then had the privilege to work as the senior custom art framer, at Colorado Frame Manufacturing for the next couple years.  At CFM, I was able to work directly with some of the most talented artists in the Front Range.  It was refreshing to be back in a creative environment, and  I became inspired to start making my own art once again.  It was time to finally commit to pursuing that professional art career I have dreamed of for so long.....  so I created Steel Bird Artworks in March of  09’....

TO BE CONTINUED.........   



my story.....


I make art for so many different reasons.  My art is an attempt to turn a concept, design, or even an emotion into a physical manifestation of those thoughts.   I truly do enjoy the process and end results solely for the sake of being creative.  However, there is also something really satisfying about a piece of art that provides a true function outside of being purely aesthetic.   It is the combination of those aspects that has led me to start Steel Bird Artworks.  

          Steel.  My primary medium of choice.  Bird.  My nickname all of my life...given to me by my wonderful mother.   Artworks.  Although steel may be the main material I work with...I do not want to limit myself to the ornamental metalwork.  I want to be working in a wide variety of mediums, whether it is purely for myself or for the client.   I am more than willing to design a mural for a wall, just as I am ready to make a custom piece of furniture. 

      Please consider me for your next project, and thank you so much for visiting my site.