Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Flowers of last Wednesday's walk

Last Wednesday on my walk I was struck by the fact that there still appeared to be quite a lot of flower blossoms on show even though we are half way through autumn - almost like nature being defiant and holding onto the colour of summer.

©2014 Barry Smith - A bursting seed pod
Anyway I thought I would share a few of the photos taken with the trusty iPhone. I love that you can still see the morning dew on some of the blossoms.


And of course it is the time of the year for Camelias - our terraces are just a riot of colour - about 40 Camelia bushes are in full bloom.

And the green of the Tree ferns contrast beautifully with the rust of the fire pit.

Nature often makes me know that it iOS good to be alive.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Sorting before the next creation ….

©2014 Barry Smith - Rust on rust - colour appears to be interaction of metals
Over the last six months I have done quite a lot of making of stuff but not a lot of cleaning up and sorting. The week before and over Easter Fiona and I got stuck into the garden and clearing away clutter on the block This motivated me to clean up the metal stashes outside the garage-studio - as you can see the order from the photos below.

©2014 Barry Smith - Copper, brass and rusted sheet iron
©2014 Barry Smith - Stainless steel, copper and brass.
©2014 Barry Smith - part of the rusted object stash
But I had a real mess of metal left over from cutting up trays for the Queensland Literary Awards and Leaf Letter Opener commissions.

©2014 Barry Smith - Metal offcuts and assemblage bits on the sorting table
©2014 Barry Smith - Metal offcuts - I had done one sort already
So over the weekend I said no creating until the metal was sorted; and cut. And you can see from the photos below that not only did I sort but shrunk it down to useful trays.

©2014 Barry Smith - Metal offcuts - cut down further and sorted into use piles
©2014 Barry Smith - section of 500 pieces for daily words and inspiration in the pocket words
©2014 Barry Smith - Decorative off cuts 
I still need to sort tools and assemblage bits yet - but am well on the way - almost feeling righteous.

If you are interested in a stash of metal offcuts - let me know what you want. I'm happy to pack and post if you pay the post. To post a kilo to the US is about Au$30; and a kilo to Europe is about Au$40. Send me an email if you are interested.

Friday, April 25, 2014

An artists book for Peace

Given that today (ANZAC Day) is a day of remembrance for those who have died in war or in peace keeping missions, Fiona and I decided that today would be a good day to work on our artists book for an exhibition later this year.

The exhibition has a focus on war and peace - so my book attempts to address these issues through the material and content. As you can see from the photo below the artist book will have a sculptural form.

©2014 Barry Smith - Artists book for peace
I have chosen to use an old cannon shell, a couple of steel cartridge cases and a few pieces that came from the battle fields around Ypres (Ieper).

©2014 Barry Smith - Old steel cartridge case
©2014 Barry Smith - Old brass cannon shell - cut down and annealed
I have also chosen to use a few lines from 3 poets (John McCrae, Wilfred Owen and Vance Palmer). These excerpts are stamped into the steel sheets I cut out of the cartridge boxes.

On each of the pages I have also included the words "imagine peace" that will be hidden towards the spine of the book form.

©2014 Barry Smith - Excerpt from John Mc Crae's poem In Flanders Fields
And the whole lot is riveted together.

©2014 Barry Smith - Artists book for peace

©2014 Barry Smith - Artists book for peace
©2014 Barry Smith - Artists book for peace
The work is still a bit rough - needs a bit of a grind and tidy up in a couple of places - but in the main I will leave it as it is  - part of the design character of the piece.

The photos are a bit rough - taken with the iPhone at different parts of the process.

It was a good feeling to complete this work today as a artistic peace statement.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Peace is on my mind

©2014 Barry Smith - Peace in tatters? One of Fiona's peace flags from International Peace Day 2013
Lately I have been a bit down from a peace perspective. The news around the globe seems to indicate that we humans have learnt very little about living peacefully. There appears to be so much killing and turning to violence to resolve religious, land and political disputes. At times it makes me want to go away into some remote place and turn off the media and ignore the violence. But we can't; we need to maintain hope and act for peace.

This morning as I walked the block at dawn I set out to take photos of the flowers and post on them tonight. But the peace flags and various peace symbols on the block caught my eye. I thought I would share them - just as another vibe for peace.

©2014b Barry Smith - Rusty peace dove - a symbol of a new beginning for peace 
©2014 Barry Smith - Peace bell and peace flags
©2014 Barry Smith - Peace (0n Peace bell)
©2014 Barry Smith - Peace crane (another of Fiona's peace flags)
©2014 Barry Smith - Peace crane (another of Fiona's peace flags)
©2014 Barry Smith - Peace - rusted on
©2014 Barry Smith - Peace post
©2014 Barry Smith - SZQ's peace symbol on a rock wall
Fiona and I will attend the ANZAC day dawn service on Friday - and will join with others vibing for peace as we remember those who died in crazy wars.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Giveaway and moon on Easter day

My Easter day started at 3am - I awoke and decided to take a photo of the Easter moon. Strangely I thought it was going to a full moon - but in fact a moon eaten at the edges. Fortunately I went back to sleep and slept soundly until normal waking time.

©2014 Barry Smith - Easter moon
The day has been filled with jobs on the block; opening the gallery to a visitor; and lunch and afternoon tea with Fiona's folks.

But I digress - today as promised I, well Fiona actually, drew the 'winners' of the 750 post giveaway.

The Peace book ….

©2014 Barry Smith - Peace Book
…. goes to SZQ.

The angel pendant …..

©2014 Barry Smith - Angel pendant
….. goes to Judi.

And the being leaf  …..

©2014 Barry Smith - Being leaf
…… goes to Karen.

A big thank you for all you beautiful people who commented on the giveaway post; sent congratulations; and participated in the giveaway. Thanks to Fiona for drawing the names. And may peace, quiet being and angels be yours today and each day.

I will be in contact with the winners and be sending the giveaways in a few days time.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Metal magic

Today (Friday) was not an art making day; but it was an art contribution and preparation day.

Fiona and I put up the signs for the Maleny Printmakers exhibition (on all Easter weekend at 37 Coral street Maleny); and I spent timing cutting and forming metal.

©2014 Barry Smith - Sheets of cut recycled copper plate
I just love the colour of the pieces of copper above. The copper was being cut for two leaf spiral pieces - one small (1.1m) and one large (1.75 m) in height. In all I needed about 24 rectangles of copper plate about 26-29cm long and 8-9cm wide. I started with the remnants of the base of a shower and pieces cut from the side of old laundry boilers.

©2014 Barry Smith - Scrap copper - marked up for cutting
And you can see I ended up with a stack of beautiful copper plates.

©2014 Barry Smith - A stash of cut recycled copper plate
©2014 Barry Smith - Offcuts beside the guillotine
©2014 Barry Smith - View through the guillotine jaws
And some beautiful patina - sadly this will be burnt off in the annealing process.

©2014 Barry Smith - Spots of patina and rust
I am fabricating some hanging art display panels for a fellow artist. I needed to make 12 solid hooks to hold the 6 timber panels that will hook over a rail on top of a long bookcase. The hooks were formed in the vise over an old piece of pipe.

©2014 Barry Smith - Fabricating hanging hooks
©2014 Barry Smith - Fabricating hanging hooks
As you can see from photos below the 12 hooks (about 5cm wide and 20cm long) are now ready to be ground and drilled before being bolted to the panels - but that is tomorrow's job.

©20134 Barry Smith - A cluster of hanging hooks
©20134 Barry Smith - A cluster of hanging hooks
So, as always - art is about much more than making - it is a way of living.

And a last reminder - don't forget to get into the giveaway: