The “Tree of Life” and Roll-Forming Embossing Method

Technique: Bead Rolling/Embossing

So, some wonderful clients wanted a new kitchen with accents of zinc. Zinc counter tops and zinc backsplashes would be an artistic element . The preliminary idea was a “tree of life” motif for above their cooking range. Diego drew up a few design ideas and they chose this design:original_drawing

Diego was excited to use beadrolling techniques that he had been incorporating into his work for this project.

One of the challenges was that the actual piece is over 10 foot long. This meant that the zinc sheet needed to be cut into 3 separate pieces with strategically placed seams that would blend in with the design.

Diego enlarged his original design and glued it to the zinc sheets and cut the metal with an allowance for the shrinking of the metal as he manipulated it.


Another challenge was changing the existing roll former height to a table height to support the large pieces of zinc as it was worked. After creating a new base stand, it became easier to manage the pieces.

Giving the illusion that the was wrapping around and behind the tree was another challenge with tapering techniques.


closeup_center_finalOnce the roll forming was done, it was a matter of precise trimming and strategically connecting the puzzle pieces and soldering them together. All solder joints were cleaned up before patination and finishing.



Diego applied a cold patina to the zinc. He highlighted areas that he wanted to bring to the forefront and darkened areas to recede. After a final clear coat, it was off to its next life in the client’s kitchen, with installation pictures to come!



Then, there was a smaller, less intricate zinc backsplash that was a sedated but unifying factor.other_backsplash




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