Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Circular Personal Shrine

I have completed a circular Personal Shrine. I was asked to make it with a moon and stars theme to it.

My Personal Shrines differ from the Travellers' Shrines in that the former are used to create a personal and sacred or quiet space in a home; whereas the Travellers's Shrines are able to be taken on journeys. The shrine is about 32cm in diameter and the shelf about 10cm wide.

©2013 Barry Smith - Moon and stars personal shrine
This shrine started its life as: a couple of large serving trays; the lid of a food bowl; cogs from old clock; large brass and copper tacks; and a scrap of 10mm thick marine ply.

©2013 Barry Smith - Large trays - ready for further  cutting for the shrine
©2013 Barry Smith - Choosing and placing the pieces
These all come together in a shiny way to form the shrine.

©2013 Barry Smith - All nailed together
Of course as a shrine it also gets an offering bowl and an inspiration leaf (peace).

©2013 Barry Smith - Bowl and leaf on the shrine shelf
This Personal Shrine is now ready for a new home; and to create a sacred-quiet space.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Progressing a bunch of things

I have a number of projects on the drawing board at the moment. The projects include: a circular Personal Shrine; Daily Words sets; a Leaf Spiral around a stainless steel cylinder; and a 3D piece for COMA. I have decided to progress them together as tasks permit. Spare time over the last couple of days have been spent mainly on cutting up and doing some initial hammering and polishing.

Mind you one casualty of all this cutting was my small guillotine. I don't know my own strength - I busted the stainless steel handle.

©2013 Barry Smith - Busted guillotine handle
I cut and hammered pieces for the circular Personal shrine; and then managed to drill and polish those pieces for assembling.

©2013 Barry Smith - Cutdown tray, lid of a bowl and clock part for Personal Shrine
©2013 Barry Smith - Polished Personal Shrine bits including shelf
Thanks to Kim S for rescuing the two trays that have gone into this Personal Shrine. They looked in pretty bad shape; but after quite a bit of polishing they have come up OK. Shows you can't judge metal by it grime.

Cut lots of fine brass sheet for leaves for my COMA piece.

©2013 Barry Smith - New fine brass for tiny leaves
Cut and did the first stage of hammering of 10 Daily Word bowls.

©2013 Barry Smith - Rough formed Daily Words bowls
Cut the metal for words for Daily Words.

©2013 Barry Smith - About 100 blanks for words cut from silver plated EPNS scrap
And cut and annealed copper for the leaf spiral.

©2013 Barry Smith - Recycled copper cut and annealed for leaf forms (about 15cm long)
And because I was in a cutting and polishing mode I made a wee book for the Maleny Celebration of Books team (which includes Fiona) to mark the completion of this years huge and successful effort. I cut the CoB brochure down and included it in the riveted book.

©2013 Barry Smith A rough wee brass and paper book (55mmX85mm) in recognition of great team and community work
A good weekend of work in the studio-garage. I will get to finish a couple of the pieces during the week.

The person who commissioned the Steampunkish magazine rack paid for it and took delivery of it today - a happy client.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Font finished on Friday

We are pretty busy with Maleny Celebration of the Book this afternoon so I got into finishing the font stand; and cutting up silver plated EPNS for my next tasks.

©2013 Barry Smith - Iron flower like circle to hold the bowl and iron post top - copper nails and rivets
The font stand has turned out well; it works as a singing bowl  - that is good; though it does not vibrate as much as do some bowls in youtube videos. A few photos of the finished post are below. You can see I have routed a design into each face. This is one of the design elements from the bowl.

©2013 Barry Smith - Iron flower like circle to hold the bowl and iron post top and routed faces of post
©2013 Barry Smith - Post with bowl in place
©2013 Barry Smith - Full set - water in place
©2013 Barry Smith - Top down view of bowl
©2013 Barry Smith - Side view of bowl and water - quiet reflections
It looks good at the entrance to our studio-gallery (601mvr).

©2013 Barry Smith - Welcome to the front door?
I think the prospective owner will come to see it early next week.  The black spots on the bowl are some sticky sponge the owner attached - I think it will be removed. The post has been oiled with an eco  red stain decking oil.  Now I can go to the haiku workshop this afternoon feeling reasonably righteous.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Font in progress

Over the last couple of days I have been working on and off a commission. I have a request to create a stand for a brass singing water bowl-font. I'm not sure how or if it works. I need to make a very solid piece with an iron top to hold the font as it apparently depends on the contact with iron and water to create the sound.

So I have cut two strips of scrap plate iron; cold formed them in the vice; and riveted them together (overlapped) into a circle (about 25cm in diameter) with copper rivets. I made short cuts into the top with a thin reinforced blade in my angle grinder in the inner slightly wider circle of iron; I bent the pieces out to fit the curve of the bowl; and gave them a bit of a leaf shape with the grinder.

©2013 Barry Smith - Circle with 'petals' to hold the singing font bowl.
I have cut iron feet from the same scrap iron; and riveted them on with the copper rivets. These feet will be nailed to the post with copper nails; and the font holder will sit raised above the post by about 5cm.

©2013 Barry Smith - Circle with feet in the test position on a hollow post (brass bowl to the right of the post)
I made a hollow post from a large heavy and thick (5cm) broken wooden bench I salvaged.

©2013 Barry Smith - Hollow post (90cm high by 25cm square) from recycled wood and scrap iron bought from a garage sale in test position
I now need to cut down another scrap piece of iron and attach the  iron top on the post. I will then rout a design into the post faces; and attach the iron circle font holder to the post. But I think those jobs will be for Friday.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

A little metal and lots of prints

I had intended to hammer some metal this weekend. I got to do a bit of hammering; but it was in the form of creating a double steel plate ring as part of a commission I have on - the bowls will have to wait.

The big focus of the weekend was: reorganising our studios; and getting my prints for the Maleny Printmakers Exhibition near finished. Yesterday was furniture moving and sorting; and today was printmaking.

©2013 Barryu Smith - Heavily etched aluminium plate
Our friend Susan B said it was possible to print 5 or 6 prints in sequence - inking all the plates up at the same time. I wanted to test that because one of the things that takes the most time in printing is constantly cleaning one's hand between inking and picking up paper to print with .

So with the Paynes Grey ink at the ready ....

©2013 Barry Smith - Water based etching ink on the plate - works well
I got into inking, rubbing back and buffing 5 plates.

©2013 Barry Smith - Plates inked ready for taking surplus ink off and buffing ready for printing
©2013 Barry Smith - Plates ready for printing
And started with an artist's proof of the 5 plates.

©2013 Barry Smith - Proofs
And then into production.

©2013 Barry Smith - Production begins
©2013 Barry Smith - Bit too much pressure
The system worked - I managed to do 50 prints (10 of each of the 5 plates) in 5 hours. Fiona had cut the paper; but the 5 hours included all other aspects of the print process. I thought it was a good outcome. I now have 10 prints prints almost ready for the exhibition. A good day at the press.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Mixed bag

Art as I often know it has not been a big item on my agenda this week. Whilst I have done art it has been some small bits and pieces all over the place; some community art that I posted on Wednesday; some 'art on the block'; and re-converting our studio=gallery into a better space.

The art on the block has taken the form of putting in foundations for an extension of our driveway into the garage - it has always been too tight. The extension will be a timber platform that will follow the curve of the driveway and hopefully the timbers will be laid in such a way that it will be a sculpture in its own right - or at least that is the theory. Following are some photos of the machinery required by the steep slope and the strength required in the platform; and of course photos of the intrepid workers (Craige the builder and Barry the offsider).

©2013 Fiona Dempster - Now that is what I call a post hole digger
©2013 Fiona Dempster - Who is mixing the cement?
©2013 Fiona Dempster - Corrugated iron - old fashioned way of getting concrete into the holes
©2013 Fiona Dempster - Builder and his offsider
©2013 Fiona Dempster - Concentration plus
©2013 Fiona Dempster - And it was all about getting 15 foundation piers into the ground - love the string lines
I was asked to round the corners of the Magazine Rack - which I have done.

©2013 Barry Smith - No dangerous sure corners here
©2013 Barry Smith - No dangerous sure corners here
And made some more found earrings.

©2013 Barry Smith - A stash of found earrings - simple and beautiful
And Fiona and I have been building Ikea pieces to further develop the studio gallery. But most of Friday has been taken up with community work as will be Saturday. I'm hoping that Sunday will see a return to a little more metal beating in my daily life - that is where my art heart lies.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Art on seats

On Monday afternoon I worked with Pam, Emma and Rachael cutting Pam's Indigenous totem designs into four very large and very heavy boomerang shaped bench seats. These seats will be part of an Indigenous Yarning Circle located at the Maleny Neighbourhood Centre.

As you can see from the photos below we cut over Pam's chalked lines on the seats with routers with vee shaped cutting blades.

©2013 Barry Smith - Emma doing the detail with the mini router
©2013 Barry Smith - Emu
G2013 Barry Smith - Fish
©2013 Barry Smith - Turtle
©2013 Barry Smith - Kangaroo
Pam is yet to paint into the grooves; then they will be sanded one last time; oiled; and then cemented in a specially prepared circle. I will show you more when it is finished in about 4 weeks time.

I like the way these turned out - different way of drawing on wood. Photos taken with the iPhone and reproduced with Pam and Emma's permission.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

A few photos from the block

We had a very colourful visitor during the week; and both Fiona and I posted a couple of photos on Facebook. Interestingly enough the Peacock came back when I was watering the pumpkin vines near the shed-studio; and it came within a couple of metres of myself and just stopped. I headed back to the house to get the camera.

When I came back the Peacock was having a fine time eating Nasturtiums - that was apparently why it came so close - I was just in the way of it getting to the Nasturtium patch. Photos of it enjoying itself are below.

©2013 Barry Smith - Peacock in the Nasturtium patch - checking me out 
©2013 Barry Smith - Peacock in the Nasturtium patch - checking out another flower to eat
It then wandered into the neighbours Nasturtium patch.

©2013 Barry Smith - Peacock in the neighbour's Nasturtium patch
Whilst checking out the Nasturtiums I noticed a few bees were active so I played with the telephoto lens and captured the water drops on the flower ....

©2013 Barry Smith - Clear beauty
... and a bee going about its business.

©2013 Barry Smith - Bee drops in for a bit of pollen
©2013 Barry Smith - Enroute between flowers 
©2013 Barry Smith - Bee emerges and has a look around 
Just magic to be in the right place sometimes.