HOMER - Metalsmithing is more than just a hobby for Tarri Thurman and her husband Marlon Prazen. It’s a way of life.
“Sparks, I've been addicted to the sparks since I started this job. Metal is pretty fun,” said Thurman.
“It's been my life basically. I grew up in a metal working family doing fabrication and artwork and all kinds of stuff so it's kind of in my blood I guess,” said Prazen.
The couple is proud to own their small business, Moose Run Metalsmiths, in the small town of Homer. Their days of working two jobs to make a living are over; both are now full-time artists.
“The art community in Homer is just so supportive. It's the most beautiful place in the world. Why wouldn't you want to work and live in the same spot,” said Thurman.
Custom fabrications are their specialty and there’s not better showroom of their work that Maryann Lyda’s front yard. From the panoramic mountains and sand cranes to the sea life, like octopus and kelp, sprouting up in the dry creek, her home is like a calling card for the business.
“I think it's important to support them, work with them if you can and go with what their feeling is,” said Lyda.
You won’t just find their work in private homes. Businesses around Homer like the public library and visitor’s center make Moose Run metal sculptures a focal point.
The pair built a spacious workshop four years ago and it gives them plenty of room to work on their latest project—an elaborate garden border.
“The panels we're working on have several parts in them from sockets to pins and we have to drill all the holes because we'll be insetting glass balls and marbles in the smaller holes,” said Prazen.
“We love telling the tourists from out of state when they're purchasing pieces how proud we are to be in Alaska and make our dream come true, work with metal and still provide them with a quality product,” said Thurman.
They’re happy to call Homer home and plan to keep making metal works for years to come.