Guest Blog: Flying High With Scrap Metal


This week’s guest blog is written by Brett McDanel, 35, Oklahoma, USA.

Growing up, a lot of my friends were artists. I’ve always been creative myself but wanted to do something a bit more “bad ass” than pottery or something like that. It’s not that I don’t  like  pottery, it’s just that I’m covered from neck to toe in tattoos, and pottery  just wasn’t  going to happen for me.

One day, I saw a guy beating the hell out of pieces of metal and making his own abstract sculpture, and that’s when it hit me, I knew what I wanted to do.

So I bought a welder, drank too much, and started sticking bits of scrap metal together in my spare time.

Eventually, I got pretty good at welding and making abstract art. At this point, I only did art for peace of mind. It was my yoga. In 2007, I had an accident involving a bottle of whiskey and a plate glass window, which nearly saw me lose my arm. I came to the conclusion that I either needed to stop drinking or stay away from windows.

After I sobered up, I felt free. I felt like a bird flying for the first time. This inspired me to start creating birds out of violent objects such as brass knuckles and hand grenades.



As my mind cleared up, I was more and more intrigued by the human condition, and from there I started building emotive human figures.



That’s pretty much the style I’ve stuck to now, as it allows me to deal with my past, present and future. The people around me are my muse, but suffering in particular seems to be a heavy theme in my work.


brett 3

I’m quite poor, so I only really use cheap or free scrap metal, wood and even stone, but all of it is recycled material.

Although I used to just do art as a kind of therapy, about five years ago, my wife got sick of all the pieces stacking up in the garage and talked me into doing a little show. I sold almost everything I took to the show.

Today, because of a bad car accident, all I do is art. I’m not getting rich but it’s helping to pay the bills here and there, and it’s something I enjoy doing.

My work is on show in a gallery in Oklahoma where I’m from, called Kasum Contemporary Fine Art, and it’s nice to know that people can see my work on public display.

You can find more of Brett’s amazing work, at Left 4 Dead Art and Furniture.

You can also find our previous guest blogs at, Horsing Around with MetalOn the Ball with Metal and Going Ape with Scrap MetalBridging the Gap Between Metal and Art and Hammering Home The Possibilities of Metal

If you’re interested in being a Guest Blogger for The Metal Store feel free to get in touch with us, we’d love to showcase your work!

Facebook: The Metal Store UK
Twitter: @TheMetalStoreUK


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