Friday, May 24, 2013

Anvil into action

During the demonstration of foldforming leaves at the Tatebayashi Citenzen's Festival tomorrow I will be using my small anvil resurrected from a rusted and pitted scrap piece of small guage railway line.

The anvil is pictured below. I have polished various edges and surfaces so that can be used in sequence to create a leaf form without changing tools all that frequently.

©2013 Barry Smith - Railway line portable multifunctional anvil 
©2013 Barry Smith - Railway line portable multifunctional anvil 
The edge in action below can be used to do the initial fold.

©2013 Barry Smith - Folding-unfloding edge in action for folding
The top surface is used for forming the leaf.

©2013 Barry Smith - Top surface for forming
The polished side edge is used again to unfold the leaf form.

©2013 Barry Smith - Folding-unfloding edge in action for un-folding
The polished rounded edge is used to spread and set the leaf shape.

©2013 Barry Smith - Leaf spreading-setting edge
And there is the simple small (about 70mm) formed leaf in the rough - needs a polish itself.

©2013 Barry Smith - Leaf form in the rough
I'm pretty pleased with this multifunctional tool. But the proof will be tomorrow - will it work to form 30 or more leaf forms over a 6 hour period??


  1. It's a precious tool, I hope it endures the stress.

  2. that was fun to see
    how genius of you to figure how to use that creative anvil!

  3. Great idea, did you have it as carryon luggage? Isnt Japan great.

  4. i am really enjoying watching your process Barry. Love the railway anvil conversion.

  5. Aahhh, so that's how you do it. I enjoyed watching over your shoulder, so to speak.

  6. I agree with Robyn- so engaging to peer over your shoulder and see how you make your leaf forms.

  7. EM, TL, P, SB, R & LAM - certainly a fun bit of recycling and as you can see from my follow up post ( it worked. EM - it does have a sense about it - a Japanese environmental artist was really intrigued by it and said I had put a bit of myself into the repurposing of the old bit of metal. TL - not sure about the genius bit but these ideas do get suggested to me by the objects. P - I was going to do carry on but in this day and age it was not going to happen - and I agree there are so many beautiful things to experience in Japan - I need to have time to see more. SB, R & LAM - it is good that demonstrating the versatility of this recycled bit of rusty metal also showed the beautiful simplicity of the process when done with soft metals - bit trickier when working with silver-plated EPNS. During the Tatebayashi Citizens' Festival I estimate that about 15 women created their own leaves with a bit of demonstration and guidance - amazing given none had handled a forming hammer before. I think the various edges of this anvil just made the process a bit easier. Go well. B


Comments are welcomed - it is good to connect with fellow travellers.