Friday, November 29, 2013

A few photos as we hit the road

Fiona and I will be sending the odd postcard blog from the USA over the next few weeks as we are over there for a bit of art and rest recreation. We hit the road this morning.

I thought I would just share a few of my iPhone photos of the sunset that Fiona shared on her Facebook on the day. Of course the tremendous colour came after the heavy grey of a storm.

©2013 Barry Smith - Standing stone and timbers after the storm
©2013 Barry Smith -  Standing stone and timbers during the storm
 We had some storm clouds lingering whilst the sun was setting the other colds on fire.

 ©2013 Barry Smith - Storm clouds linger and mix with blazing clouds
 ©2013 Barry Smith - Storm clouds linger and mix with blazing clouds
 ©2013 Barry Smith - Gold on the clouds 1
 ©2013 Barry Smith - Gold on the clouds 2
The amazing artistry of nature.

 Frangipani with the blush of sunset on its petals.

©2013 Barry Smith - Rain droplets and reflected light
This Friday night Fiona and I will be miles above the ocean - and yet maybe still a glass of bubbles to celebrate the end of a very busy but creative and enjoyable year.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Metal for metro men

Quite a long time ago I made prototypes of metal tags or pendants for men that I called Metal for Men.
Yesterday I made a stash of 'metal tags' to take with us on our upcoming trip to have as gifts for males.

©2013 Barry Smith - Metal tags for men
As you can see from the photo above and below they all have a bit of the same look and general design - 3 layers of metal; different combinations of silver plate, copper and brass; rivets (some cold attachments and some decorative); and all with the word peace stamped on them.

©2013 Barry Smith - Metal tags for men 1
©2013 Barry Smith - Metal tags for men 2
©2013 Barry Smith - Metal tags for men 3 
©2013 Barry Smith - Metal tags for men 4
These 'metal tags' are a little more refined than the earlier prototypes below - hence the title metal for metro men. All tags are made from recycled metal offcuts and are about 35-40mm long by about 25-30mm wide

I think the recipients will be pleased with the new tags - they can always use them on their key rings.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Happy tiredness

Fiona and I have just finished two days of open studio. It has been a tiring two days but rewarding in so many ways. We have had great visitors: some who emanated to stay and chat about our art and techniques; some who wanted to sit and have a coffee and biscuit and offer support; some who brought biscuits to have with the coffee; some who wanted to take the opportunity to buy; and some who just did it all. These days are just so affirming from an art practice perspective.

We showered and headed onto the breezeway to have a much deserved glass of celebratory bubbles; and then the storm hit - sunshine to the south and rain and darkness in the north. So we have scuttled inside to finish the bubbles whilst blogging.

©2013 Barry Smith - Strom from the north
Today was quieter than yesterday so it gave us the chance to do a bit of making in between visitors. I have managed to grind the strips for my commission of 50 leaf letter openers; and I have started the process of marking the strips up and cutting they first half of the leaf form. The metal is too thick and hard to cut when folded - so I cut one side; fold; anneal; cut the other side; hammer; anneal; and unfold. The bench started clean but became progressively cluttered.

©2013 Barry Smith - Neat work area at the beginning of the day
©2013 Barry Smith - Work area becoming progressively cluttered as the day goes on 
©2013 Barry Smith - 55 metal strips ground and ready for cutting; and half marked up and cut on one side
I did like the curls of the off cuts clinging in the afternoon sun.

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I think it will be an early night tonight.

Friday, November 22, 2013

In readiness

Today Fiona and I have been flat out doing the sorting and tidying one tends to do in preparation for visitors to an open studio. We are ready to invite friends, fellow artists and the public into our reorganised studio gallery space 601 mvr at 601 Mountain View Road Maleny (Saturday and Sunday 23-24 November - 10am-4pm each day).

And as you can see from the photos below I have created enough pieces for folk to get a good idea of what I do; and to have stuff for them to purchase.

©2013 Barry Smith - Trademark items - bowls and silver plate peace leaves

©2013 Barry Smith - Display table - an assortment of stuff
©2013 Barry Smith - More Barry pieces - Daily Words and Pods
©2013 Barry Smith - Pendants 
©2013 Barry Smith - An abundance of earrings
I did not get time to take a photo of Fiona and my print display-sales area; and I'm sure Fiona will post a photo or two opt her great small books and journals. Something for everyone it would seem.

The day also heavy exercise in it as I gave Craige, our builder, a hand to spread 2 cubic meters of gravel into the car turning area we are building. And I cut quite a bit of metal so I can grind it  during the open studio days - always good to have a project.

©2013 Barry Smith - Strips of silver plated EPNS and copper cut from trays
©2013 Barry Smith - 55 pieces of silver plate
And now we are off to the opening of the COMA exhibition. I think I might need (not just want) a wine tonight.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Friends of the feathers etc

A friend and fellow artist bought a pair of my metal feather earrings and wanted a feather for a pendant. And of course with these things though I had been given width and length you are never sure just what the person is looking for. So in the end I made 5 feather forms; 3 for her to choose from; and she was delighted with one.

The beaten feather forms look as follows…

©2013 Barry Smith - Feather forms
©2013 Barry Smith - Feather forms
I had a request to make a couple of ladles for another artist friend. So I thought I would make four so I could offer her the best options. The first stage of ladle making is to create exquisite small bowls - in this instance one small deeper bowl and three shallower bowl forms.

©2013 Barry Smith - Bowl forms for  ladles
Blogger is playing up and I can't load many photos - so will need to give an update another time. Now I need to bring the bowls and handles together - a little riveting to happen - maybe tomorrow.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A bounty of bowls

Quite a few of the bowls from our studio-gallery (601 mvr) have gone to Holden's Gallery to be part of their current exhibition - so I needed to hammer a few more for our up-coming open studio next week end (23-24 November).

I'm pleased to say that the hammering has paid off; and I now has a reasonable collection and range of bowls for folk to look at and maybe purchase. The photos below show the variation in the bowls. All are made from recycled metal  - mainly EPNS trays and objects like butter dishes and sugar bowls.

Pods are my favourites - but they do take quite a lot of cycles of annealing and hammering - but I think the shape is beautiful to hold - a little like eggs from which something has hatched.

©2013 Barry Smith - A pair of pods (bowls)
Rounded bowls that have not been pushed to to the pod shape also fit well in the palm of the hand. And I have this thing lately where I like to leave the hammered edge (sanded and polished of course).

©2013 Barry Smith - Orange sized raised bowl
©2013 Barry Smith - Smaller palm sized raised bowl.

And the tiny bowls made from the bases of goblets are also faavourites - hard to hammer the rims as they are double layers of metal.

©2013 Barry Smith - A trio of tiny bowls - different number of cycles of hammering
I tried a couple of conical bowls that I have beaten in a number of directions giving them heaps of hammer texture.

©2013 Barry Smith - Heavily textured conical bowls
©2013 Barry Smith - Heavily textured conical bowls
I sold a leaf bowl recently so it encouraged me to make a couple of smaller versions.

©2013 Barry Smith - Small worn silver plate over brass leaf bowl
©2013 Barry Smith - Small silver plate over copper leaf bowl
And it is good to put the bases of small jardinieres to use by re-hammering them

©2013 Barry Smith - A pair of brass bowls
A bit of recycled copper never goes astray…

©2013c Barry Smith - Bowl - brushed brass over copper 
So that is how I spent part of the weekend - but a very satisfying result.

Friday, November 15, 2013

The beauty of metal

Over the last couple of weeks I have been back into hammering metal big time - well small pieces but a lot of them.

Yesterday I delivered another bunch of ladles to Maleny Additions in the main street of Maleny - they sell my ladles and leaf spoons. As hand crafted gifts they appear to be in demand. All the ladles and leaf spoons are made from recycled silver plate over EPNS or copper. Handles are made from recycled wire, old soldering irons and new brass rod (have not been able to source much brass rod to recycle yet).

©2013 Barry Smith - a cluster of ladles
One of the ladles did not make it out of the house as Fiona said it was about time we had one of my ladles; and she was keen on the one below.

©2013 Barry Smith - Fiona's ladle
©2013 Barry Smith - Fiona's ladle
Some closer photos of the other ladles that did make it to Maleny Additions follow.

©2013 Barry Smith - shallow bowl ladle with copper twist handle
©2013 Barry Smith - Bach of shallow bowl ladle with copper twist handle riveted
©2013 Barry Smith - shallow bowl ladle with brass rod handle
©2013 Barry Smith - Back of shallow bowl ladle with brass rod handle
©2013 Barry Smith - Deeper bowl ladle with brass rod handle
©2013 Barry Smith - Tiny bowl ladle with brass rod handle 
©2013 Barry Smith - Deeper bowl ladle with brass rod handle - triangle end
And a few photos of some bowls in the rough or in progress. As you can see from the photo I tend to progress bowls in groups - efficient but a little hard on the forearm and wrist.

©2013 Barry Smith - Heap of bowls on the annealing table
©2013 Barry Smith - Brass and copper bowls ready for polishing
©2013 Barry Smith - Trio of slier plated EPNS bowls on the annealing table
More hammering to be done to finish the bowls off; and then polishing of course.