Student Spotlight: Carlton Phelps |

Student Spotlight: Carlton Phelps

Carlton Phelps makes jewelry like this ring in his class at Roaring Fork High School.
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Carlton Phelps, a 17-year-old junior at Roaring Fork High School, has found a passion in making jewelry.

It started as an interest a few years ago, and now he’s taking a jewelry making class in school, where he makes rings, bracelets, tie shields and more.

Phelps shared with the Post Independent how he became interested in jewelry making and what he loves about it.

Post Independent: How did you get interested in jewelry making?

Carlton Phelps: My interest with jewelry began a couple years ago when my grandfather showed me his handmade rock cutting and polishing tools and then showed me how he embezzled stone onto crosses and rings he finds at the flea market. I took immediate interest in it after that, really. As soon as I found out [Leslie] Keery was offering a jewelry class, I signed up.

PI: What kind of jewelry do you like to make?

CP: I enjoy making rings, bending the pre-made stocks and soldering the two ends together, and on a few I’ll solder on a bucket for a small gem. I’ve also been experimenting with bracelets and a tie shield that sits on the knot of the tie (the stone with the tree on it).

PI: What do you like about jewelry making?

CP: I find it relaxing; it forces me to slow down and be patient. It’s also great seeing a piece of metal turn into some thing a little more “special,” is the only way I can think of saying.

PI: Do you practice any other art forms?

CP: I enjoy to doodle, and I play the sax in the high school band, which is one of the coolest things I’ve ever done, and my band teacher of seven years I consider a family member; but that’s about it.

PI: Why do you think art classes are important in schools?

CP: I think art is special because it’s one of the only classes that actually allows the student to express themselves, and to teenagers that’s a huge thing because although a lot of us won’t admit it, we have a hard time expressing ourselves. Art is an easy, harmless way of doing just that.

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