AMCAW Virtual Guild

The AMCAW Virtual Guild is a benefit available only to AMCAW members.  Once per quarter, join a live online meeting where you can learn new skills from top-notch members of the metal clay community.

Our goal is to move beyond teaching techniques to create a space where artists of all levels can contribute their knowledge and enthusiasm, learning from each other and supporting and interacting for the benefit of the entire community. All Virtual Guild Meetings are recorded to make it easy for our members to listen at a later time when the live meeting is not convenient.

Our next meeting is October 17, 2020

Brilliant Bails
by Julia Rai

When you first start working with metal clay, you often begin by punching a hole in your pendant and using a jump ring to hang it. As you gain more experience, adding bails into your designs increases the options for making your work unique.

In this presentation with Julia Rai, you’ll learn to design bails that complement your work and create movement and interest. We will explore all kinds of bails including hidden bails, fixed and free-floating statement bails, rollover bails and tube bails. Julia will show you how to create bails as components to keep in the dry stage so you can test them on your designs and open up new ideas for your work. 

Bring your questions for a Q&A after the presentation!

About Julia Rai

Julia Rai is an artist, writer and teacher working predominately in metal clay. She has a teaching studio based in Cornwall, UK. Well known in the international metal clay community, she has been working with metal clay since 2004 and teaching it since 2007. She is the Director of the Metal Clay Academy, an online resource for everyone interested in metal clay. Launched in 2008, Julia has been the webmaster, editor and researcher for this metal clay resource website from its launch. Between 2008 and 2019 Julia participated in the metal clay Masters Registry programme, creating 50 pieces of work across five levels of mastery. She is the only person in the world to achieve level five of the Registry programme and submit a master work. The Registry programme closed at the end of June 2019.

You can see all 50 projects plus the master work on Julia’s website. and

Virtual Guild Video Library

To see the video recordings of previous meetings please click the button below. You will need to be logged into your account to access these recordings.

Julia Rai – Brilliant Bails

Virtual Guild meeting July 18, 2020

Thomas Flores – How to Solder Metal Clay

Virtual Guild meeting April 18, 2020

Alex Kraft – Creating Unique Hollow Forms

Virtual Guild meeting January 18, 2020

Pam East – Caring for your kiln

Virtual Guild meeting October 19, 2019

How Will It Work?

Each Virtual Guild meeting will include three sections:

  1. Presentation by a top-notch metal clay instructor
  2. Q & A session for viewers to ask questions of the instructor
  3. Show & Tell segment where members’ pieces can be shared and discussed

The meetings will be held in a webinar format. The presenting instructor will be live online and will use on-screen photos and videos to teach concepts and techniques that are of interest to metal clay artists.

We know you will have great questions! That’s why time will be set aside in each meeting for Q & A with the instructor. Participants will use the built-in Q&A and chat boxes to ask questions and engage in discussions.

During the Show & Tell segment, we will show photos of pieces submitted in advance by members who wish to get feedback, seek help with problem-solving or share their own creative solutions. The trusty chat box will allow everyone to get into the action and share their thoughts.

Join us live for the Virtual Guild meeting or watch the recording afterwards.

Your choice!

Technical Details

  • Click the Register Now button to sign up for the next Virtual Guild meeting. If the Register Now button is not showing then registration is not currently open. 
  • You are registering for one meeting only and will need to register again if you wish to attend another meeting in the future.
  • You will receive an email confirming your registration, which will include instructions and a link to join the meeting. You will also receive reminder emails prior to the meeting.
  • A recording of the meeting will be available on this page to AMCAW members.
  • The Virtual Guild meeting will take place on the Zoom webinar platform. For more information visit the Zoom attendee help page.

Show & Tell

We’ve heard from organizers of several regional metal clay guilds that “Show & Tell” is a popular segment of their in-person meetings. The AMCAW Virtual Guild meetings will also have a Show & Tell segment, allowing members to get help with problem solving, share their own creative solutions to challenges, or just show off a piece they’re excited about.

Take a look at the following guidelines below.

A link to the Show & Tell Submission Form will be in the confirmation email you receive when you register for the upcoming Virtual Guild meeting. The link is also on the registration page.

Show & Tell Submission Details (click the + sign)
  • Members of AMCAW can submit a piece they’d like to share during Show & Tell at the next Virtual Guild meeting.
  • You must be registered for the upcoming Virtual Guild meeting to submit a piece.
  • Show & Tell is an excellent opportunity to get feedback or help with problem solving. It’s also a way for you to share something you learned or a challenge you overcame.
  • Submissions must be received at least two weeks before the next Virtual Guild meeting.
  • If your piece is selected and shared during Show & Tell, please wait at least one meeting before submitting another piece for Show & Tell.
  • If your piece is not selected, you may submit it again or submit another piece for the next meeting.

Submission Guidelines:

  1. You may submit one piece and it can be shown at any stage of completion.
  2. Provide at least two photos – one of the front of the piece and one of the back. You may include up to four photos total to show different details or different perspectives to help the group see the piece.
  3. Photos must be jpg format.
  4. Photos must be in focus and cropped so we get a close up view of the piece.
  5. Provide a description of the piece, including the size, materials used and techniques used to create it.
  6. Please share any problems you encountered in making the piece and how you solved them. If you have specific questions or challenges you are still trying to solve, include those details. Let us know about any specific issues you want to discuss or receive feedback about from the group.
Do I have to be an AMCAW member to participate in the Virtual Guild?
Yes, the Virtual Guild is a benefit of being an AMCAW member. Click here to become an AMCAW member today.
How do I register for a meeting?
Scroll up and click on the “Register Now” button, or just click here. You will be prompted to login using your AMCAW username and password before gaining access to the registration page.
How often are the Virtual Guild meetings?
What happens after I register for a Virtual Guild meeting?
You will receive an email with a link to join us on Zoom webinar. After you register, you will also get reminder emails 1 week prior to the meeting and the day before the meeting.
Do I have to register for each Virtual Guild meeting?
Yes. You will need to revisit the registration page to register for each meeting.
Do I need to download software on my computer before the meeting?
When you click the link to join your first Zoom webinar, you will be prompted to download the Zoom software. You can also prepare ahead of time by downloading the software here. When you join meetings in the future, the app will automatically open when you click on the meeting link.
Can I join from my phone or tablet?
Yes. If you click the link to join the webinar from your phone or tablet, you will be prompted to download the Zoom app to that device. You can also prepare ahead of time by visiting this page, which includes links for Android and Apple mobile devices. When you join meetings in the future, the app will automatically open when you click on the link.
Can I join if I don’t have a device with the ability to play video?
You can join by phone for audio. The confirmation email you will receive after registering for the meeting includes both a link to join the meeting through your device and phone numbers to call for audio.
Can I join if I don’t have a speaker on the device I am using for the meeting?
Yes, you can join by phone to hear audio. In the email confirmation of your registration, phone numbers to hear audio are included. It is different for every meeting so you will have to register for each meeting.
How far in advance do I need to register for the meetings?
You can register right up until the meeting starts, but please register sooner to be sure you don’t run into any technical glitches.
What if I miss a meeting?
Don’t worry. Recordings of past meetings will be available via the Virtual Guild page on the AMCAW website. You’ll need your AMCAW username and password to access the recordings.
Do I have to be an AMCAW member to submit works to Show & Tell?
What kind of things should I submit to Show & Tell?
You can submit anything that is related to metal clay. You might submit pieces where things didn’t go as planned and talk about how you overcame the issues. Or maybe you tried something new or were surprised that things went better than expected. You can also request feedback for how to overcome challenges you are having with the piece. For guidelines about submitting Show & Tell pieces, please visit the Virtual Guild page on the AMCAW website.
Do submissions to Show & Tell have to be finished pieces?
No. We want to show work in different stages so please submit works in any stage of completion.
Why do I need to register and submit for Show & Tell at least 2 weeks before the meeting?
The Virtual Guild team needs enough time to address each submission and prepare for that portion of our meeting.
How do I submit something for Show & Tell?
A link to submit work for Show & Tell will be in the registration confirmation email. The link is also on the registration page.

About Guilds

Since the middle ages people with common interests have been coming together to form guilds. The craft and merchant guilds of that time were an important part of the fabric of society, maintaining standards and protecting the interests of the members. Though the merchant guilds have faded away there are still guilds of artisans and craftspeople. Today these groups serve to help us share knowledge and create companionship with others who are passionate about the same thing. 

Apply To Present At A Future Meeting

If you are a member of the metal clay community with something interesting to share, then this high-profile opportunity might be perfect for you!

You must be an AMCAW member to apply