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Clay and iron are both very pliable at certain stages: clay when wet, iron when hot. My wife Sylvia is a potter. After she explains how she would do a form in clay, I can usually find a way to move the hot soft iron to the desired shape. The original size and shape metal stock is often indistinguishable in the finished piece. I like that.
After 10 years of forging full-time, I am just beginning to understand how much there is to know about moving metal. I sell my work through our studio gallery Silver Creek Pottery and Forge and do some commission work.