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Daniel Mcdonnell’s expertise at crafting steel artworks began when he learned welding as an apprentice boilermaker.
“He started his apprenticeship when he was 15 and began making sculptures in his spare time, so he’s always had a passion for it,” wife Bianca explains.
“Later on he’d make sculptures for me, back when we were in our twenties.
“When our kids began school he got a shop and opened our business, Steel Art Australia.”
The North Geelong business has now been trading for eight years, working together as a team after Daniel taught Bianca how to weld.
“I don’t know personally any other women who weld. I see some women welding on my Facebook page but I don’t know them personally.
“I love working with all the boys and love selling what I’m welding.”
Welding now for the past two years, Bianca focuses on making the business’s smaller, detailed sculptures, such as steel butterflies and birds.
“I use lots of old bits and pieces; springs, old blots, nuts, car parts.”
Bianca’s materials come from sources ranging from “mechanic friends” through to tips.
“I’m always on the hunt for things.
“Every sculpture I build is very different, they are one off pieces, they’re not mass produced.”
Daniel creates the business’s larger sculptures, including life-size pelicans and nesting eagles.
He’s also sculpted a life-size whale tail along with decorative boat anchors for gardens.
“Daniel’s done lots of sculptures – my goal is to be as good as him one day,” Bianca says.
The pair has passed their love of steel scuplting on to older son Jake, aged 8.
“He loves welding,” Bianca says.
“He’s really good at art and has the flair and passion for it. Supervised, he made a life-size tea-bucket car in two days – it now sits in our garden.”
Steel Art Australia is at 1 Lillian Street, North Geelong, phone 0430 781 918 or visit facebook.com/Steel-Art-Australia

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