#WhyWeWeld: It's In Our DNA
#WhyWeWeld, a campaign profiling welders from all backgrounds and walks of life. We are here to share their unique work and stories.
It's In Our DNA
Although not a professional welder, Alex (of @welderman_alex ) became a mechanic at the age of 20. Repairing trucks, he had to learn to weld and was mentored by his uncle who taught him some welding methods. “The biggest project I worked on was the repair of a concrete pump,” he told us. Alex isn’t only a great welder for his job, but also creates incredibly detailed welding art. Such a great story of using your skills for a creative purpose!
Alex makes a great contribution to the online welding community through sharing his metal art sculptures, and YesWelder is thrilled to profile his work!
Maggie (of @maggienoodlee) is a welding student based in Detroit, Michigan, who shared some of her experience as a beginner in the world of welding with us. “I started welding after taking two years off from college when I didn’t know what I wanted to do in life yet,” she told us.
She was inspired by her grandfather, a design engineer for Ford who became interested in sculpture welding during his retirement. Maggie told us, “…he inspired me to learn as much as I could about the trade,” after sharing that her grandad was her “biggest supporter and hero growing up”.
Maggie has time ahead of her to figure out the exact line of work she’d like to pursue, but for now, she has ideas about where she’d like to apply her skill. “I would love to get into automotive welding,” she said, adding that she’d also consider a more artistic path, such as sculpture.
Of course, any welding student will encounter challenges in learning new techniques and methods. “My biggest challenge so far is learning all the main processes in welding and becoming skilled enough to excel at each one,” Maggie told us. She also mentioned that despite the work being difficult, the payoff is worthwhile.
Maggie emphasized the importance of wanting to learn: “It’s important to keep going, to learn as much as possible! Knowledge is your superpower!” —@maggienoodlee
Marisa Mitchell (of @killer_mars) is a sculptor and welder running a metal fabrication business based in Knoxville, TN.
“Growing up I was always around construction because my dad is a contractor,” Marisa told us, explaining that she later studied sculpture at the University of Tennessee, as she had become more interested in art. It was at college where Marisa learned to weld—a skill which she would soon put to good use.
“After college, I worked as an independent contractor for several companies in Knoxville doing things from concrete countertops, glassblowing, carpentry, and all kinds of fabrication work.” Marisa built up a network of contacts and started her own fabrication business about two years after college, which began with small jobs. Eventually, Marisa would find herself working on bigger projects: “At first it was a lot of smaller jobs doing repairs and small custom furniture but eventually I was doing larger scale work with commercial/residential railings.”
The world of welding and construction has come with challenges for Marisa, as many will relate to. She told us, “I often find myself in situations where I am not taken seriously or picked on because I am a woman.” Still, it doesn’t seem that Marisa wants anyone to accept defeat, telling us, “The construction world is very tough for everyone including males, so you just have to stay strong and firm on why you’re there in the first place.”
Marisa’s most challenging job was for a commercial building, where she worked on 60' of guardrail and grab rail for a stairway. She told us that the work can be tough, but that she still encourages others in the trade to focus on themselves, and do their best.
“…no matter how tough it gets…you will prove yourself to be tougher.” — @killer_mars
Have a story you'd like to share? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, we would love to hear from you.