Roy began creating metal art about seven years ago after he purchased a Plasmacam Cutting System. Using electricity, the machine creates plasma which, guided by a computer, cuts out the designs from metal sheets. They mostly work with 14-gauge steel because it is lighter weight and more cost effective, but that said that the Plasmacam can cut aluminum, copper, and stainless steel, too. Economics is what guided him into purchasing the machine.
“I call it metal art.” said Roy, pointing to nearly seventy metal designs that hang on his office wall, from cats and dogs to tractors and machinery in any size and shape. “The smallest I have made was a 4-inch cutout of a steer for a farmer to use in making a pattern in his cement,” Roy said. “The largest I have made was a life-size cowboy riding a horse for the Pizza Ranch in Yankton, South Dakota.” Roy’s art has made it beyond the Midwest as some pieces are in California, Colorado, Montana, and even Mexico.
We are always looking for a new challenge. Drawing up each design is what Roy enjoys most. “It's fun to play with it, seeing what you can do.” Roy has learned he can tear some pre-made images apart, combining different pieces to make a design that's custom made. “That is what I specialize in, custom designing.” Roy said. "Your imagination is our limit!!"
“I couldn't tell you how many we have made. ”Roy said. We are starting to go to fairs though - to get the word out that this is something we do as well. We have met people from the area that did not know they could get this kind of art locally, so that's what we hope to do."
As fair-goer himself, Roy had an idea. “There are all these craft fairs around; and at fairs a lot of commercial exhibits are for crafts. Craft items are popular. Looking around it is all a lot of wood, but I like working in metal.” Roy also thought metal arts are appealing because it requires less maintenance. "Wood is nice, but every couple of years you have to repaint, re-varnish or stain it. There is a lot of maintenance to it; whereas metal, once you paint it, there is no maintenance to it at all. Or you can just let it rust for a natural look and it will probably still outlast you and I both.”