Metal Mantis owner and craftsman, Colby Brinkman, is an internationally trained blacksmith, metal artist and welder.
He began his training in 1995 apprenticing with artists, blacksmiths, metal fabricators, and architects in the Austin, Texas area.
Taking his education in metal art to the next level, Colby spent two years as a journeyman under master smiths in Czech Republic, Italy and Spain where his training focused on forging and applying traditional joinery methods.
Since returning to Austin and opening Metal Mantis in 2005, Colby has applied his traditional blacksmithing and design training to a wide variety of contemporary metalworks such as lighting elements, decorative hardware, furniture, gates, railings and fences and water features. He has also designed and built arbors, staircases, fireplace tools and screens.
When not working on commissioned projects, Colby forges carpenter hammers, tongs and axes, as well as all the tools necessary for his workshop. He enjoys making metal sculptures, primarily larger-than-life insects — hence the name Metal Mantis.
Colby is a founding member of the Austin Metal Authority, a collective of metal artists, blacksmiths, welders, and fabricators. The AMA commonly collaborates on large scale projects, demonstrations, and is currently offering welding and blacksmithing lessons.