About Neil Brown
I came to the world of the Artistic Blacksmith relatively late in my working life. I had previously worked in various fields, including: microfilm, model making and I.T. However, whilst working in these roles, I always felt that there had to be more for me – something I really enjoyed and could excel at. I knew from my love of cars that I enjoyed ‘…WORKING WITH METAL, CHANGING ITS SHAPE AND CREATING.’
I also really admired the craftsmen that produce exquisite car bodies from flat sheets of metal with only a few tools. But, I didn’t want to turn my hobby into my job. Thankfully, I somehow, and I’m still not sure how, found blacksmithing – specifically, a three day course for beginners. So, I signed up, fell in love with the creative process and I have never looked back.
In terms of work, I have had some lucky breaks. I managed to find an employer in North East London that was willing to take me on, despite having no ‘real world’ experience in blacksmithing and fabrication. Here, I learned numerous, invaluable skills – especially in fabrication. Overall, it was a sound building block for my development.
However, this role no longer fulfilled me. I really wanted to forge, bend and mould steel into something new. So, I started looking for more suitable work in my local area and through a tattoo emporium in Guildford, I found a job working alongside a master blacksmith.
Although I didn’t get many chances to work on the forge, I watched and listened, absorbing as much as I could. Again, I learned many new skills and started to APPRECIATE THE TRUE SKILL OF A BLACKSMITH.
Another lucky break occurred a year or so later. When I was interviewed for the Guildford job, I was also interviewed for another. Just when it was needed, this company phoned asking if I was interested in a blacksmith role. It was a big step for me, I would be the only and therefore the main blacksmith in this company.
Despite my lack of experience on the forge, I took the position and didn’t look back. Suddenly, all those techniques I’d been absorbing were being used and I was ‘…CREATING BEAUTIFUL OBJECTS FROM COLD, HARD STEEL.’
The time then came, where I felt that I needed to ‘do my own thing’. So, the Hot Metal Works was born. I love my work – manipulating a seemingly unforgiving material and turning it into various objects of beauty and often function.
At the Hot Metal Works, I produce quality forged hand crafted items. These items have been said to complement homes and/or gardens, reflecting how beautiful things can improve our quality of life. View the portfolio to see some examples of the work I have created. But, don’t be limited by what you see, as I can design and construct a range of aesthetically pleasing things.