Judy Gregory

Potter and Welding Hobbyist

“I taught art for a while, and now I’m a potter. I always wanted to learn to weld — it would be nice to be able to make money at it, but for now it’s just a lifelong dream to learn how to do it.

“I like the creative part of welding, seeing what other people discard as trash or something worthless and making it into something useful and interesting. I’m passionate about this class and tell everyone about it. There are so many ways to use welding in practical ways, but first, you have to learn the technical skills. You use a plasma cutter to cut, you weld, bend and shape. A dream gets planted in your brain and then you use the skills you’ve learned to bring it all together.

“The really cool thing is that our classes have all kinds of mixed students. There are some who want to be professional welders for work, and one young man who wants to earn a four-year welding degree and teach welding. Then there are the metal artists like myself, and we’re all equally accepted here. We all have to learn how equipment is used, how to weld safely and the correct way to put things together. A really strong element of the program is that for whatever interest you have, the instructors help bring you along. It brings out the best in all of us.

“One of my lifelong dreams has been to incorporate welding into my other artistic media. I like the balance of intellectual and creative skills; both are challenged. It doesn’t matter where you are in life, welding is something you can do young or old.”

Judy Gregory is a former children’s art teacher who has taken Welding courses at Dallas College ​and plans to move with her husband to China, where she hopes to continue her pottery, welding and other art.