Friday, May 27, 2016

Back to a bit of production but also peace

©2016 Barry Smith
My art over the last few weeks has been about commissions ;and Fiona and I doing a couple pieces together.

But I got the word from Maleny Additions that a bit more stock was required. So I decided to use today to make Leaf Pate Knives; but because there was spare shorter pieces of metal left over from cutting up a very large tray I decided to make a stash of peace words leaves to give away from time to time.

Blanks for leaves with words stamped.

©2016 Barry Smith
The peace leaves were to be about 12cm long; and the Leaf Pate Knives about 17cm long.

Stash of pate knives and leaves cut folded and marked ready for second cutting.

©2016 Barry Smith
Hammered and ready for forming and unfolding.

©2016 Barry Smith
Leaf Pate Knives and peace word leaves ready for polishing.

©2016 Barry Smith
Leaf Pate Knives polished ready for tags.

©2016 Barry Smith
And a stash of peace leaves ready for giving away.

©2016 Barry Smith
Humble production work. Now off to a exhibition opening.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Its about the moon

Over about the last week I have taken the occasional photo of the moon at different times of the night and morning - not obsessed just enjoying the changing nature and clarity.

©2016 Barry Smith - Weird purple light created by sunrise and cloud over a setting moon and distortion created by the camera
The early morning on Monday was particularly unusual - a colourful sunrise as the moon was setting made for some unusual colours as you can see from the photo above. Much of the unusual colour etc was cause by a combination of the autofocus of the camera (Canon Powershot), an early morning bank of cloud rolling in from the west and the sunrise - but more about that later. Unless indicated otherwise all the photos were taken with the Canon Powershot.

First some photos of the changing size and colour and clarity of the moon during different phases.

©2016 Barry Smith  - Purple halo - out of focus moon and star 
©2016 Barry Smith  - Cold grey moon on a clear night
©2016 Barry Smith - Almost full moon on a clear very very early morning
©2016 Barry Smith - Full moon- clear evening
©2016 Barry Smith - Bottom edge of the full moon
Monday morning

©2016 Barry Smith - Full moon - early morning
And now back to that early morning light

©2016 Barry Smith - Blush of sunrise to the left and setting moon to the right (iPhone panorama)
©2016 Barry Smith  - Sunrise - setting moon caught behind a bank of cloud reflecting sunrise light (iPhone panorama)
And early morning moon - distorted light through cloud and the morning atmosphere  - the camera was having trouble focussing and was creating some distortions of colour and light

©2016 Barry Smith  - Distorted light and cloud over the moon
©2016 Barry Smith  - Caught behind apricot clouds (iPhone zoom)
©2016 Barry Smith  - Drift of cloud covers setting moon - purple haze and halo of distorted light
And contrasting grey sky of the setting moon.

©2016 Barry Smith  - Setting moon - free of cloud but seemly against a grey background
Wednesday morning
©2016 Barry Smith - Bottom of the moon disappearing
©2016 Barry Smith - Bottom of the moon disappearing
©2016 Barry Smith - This morning's moon well after sunrise - moon in the blue
©2016 Barry Smith - This morning's moon well after sunrise - moon in the blue
So you can see why I get a bit fixated at times.

And the sunrise this morning

©2016 Barry Smith - A soft clear valley morning with no clouds

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Very exciting - large freestanding etched books

©2016 Barry Smith  - Detail of etched front cover of one of the books with aluminium rivets
As you might be aware from my Friday blog post Fiona and I have been working together on a set of large freestanding outdoor artists' books. We agreed that we would both post on the books today - but I'm sure you'll agree that Fiona gives a different perspective.

We did the metal cutting, calligraphy and etching on Wednesday.

©2016 Barry Smith - Fiona doing the calligraphy in shellac
©2016 Barry Smith - Fiona doing the calligraphy in shellac
On Saturday Fiona was away doing print related stuff so I agreed to rivet the pages together so we could then open them together today.

Because I was going to use some 9mm thick aluminium rivets I picked up from a garage sale years ago I had to make some riveting tools to fit the rivets. These were made out of a couple of discarded cold-chisels.

©2016 Barry Smith - Home made riveting tools for 9mm aluminium rivets
©2016 Fiona Dempster - Aluminium sheets ready for etching with shellac resist and one etched page in the background
I was about to start the drilling and riveting when I remembered that the resist paint on the back of the pages needed to be removed. I was going to buy some automotive spirits but forgot - so given there was no car to drive into town I tried petroleum - smelt bad but it worked.

©2016 Barry Smith  - Removing paint resist with unleaded petrol
The riveting went well as you can see from the photo below.

©2016 Barry Smith  - Riveted books - ready for opening
And before lunch today Fiona and I used a bit of innovation and physical strength to bend the pages into place.

©2016 Fiona Dempster - Large book clamped ready to be opened
©2016 Fiona Dempster -  Two books opened (imagine peace book is 600mm long and 400mm high, dream peace book is 600mm high and 400mm wide).
The final set of three books was photographed in a few settings - they have worked out well.

©2016 Fiona Dempster - There peace books opened (the large book - peace is every step is 800mm high and 600mm wide) - on the gravel outside the shed - studio-gallery
©2016 Fiona Dempster - Three books on the car turning deck
©2016 Fiona Dempster - Books in the landscape - on the footbridge on the terraces below the house.
Fiona and I have wanted to make this installation-sculptural set of artists' books for many years and the metal has been there to do the work - it is funny how one commission job provided us with the encouragement to move and achieve the outcome. The theme of the books is peace - etched into the middle page are: imagine peace, dream peace and peace is every step (TCH).

Friday, May 20, 2016

This and that

©2016 Barry Smith - Mysterious  image on a pile of gravel  - extraterrestrial artists?
Most of today has been taken up with art stuff but not making - an art meeting about the exhibition , workshops etc in Japan in October; a community meeting; and a studio visit by a bunch of printmakers. However during the week art was done including a full day on Wednesday when Fiona and I collaborated on cutting and etching the pages  or three large freestanding aluminium artists'  books; and I completed a couple of Artisan Lamps to give a client a choice of lamps for a birthday gift.

A couple more photos of cutting metal and painting the backs on a pile of gravel as a resist against the etching solution.

©2016 Barry Smith - Cutting 4 large pages (80cm x 60cm)
©2016 Barry Smith - Painting 'resist' on the back of a large page
©2016 Barry Smith - What the gravel pile looked like after painting the backs of 9 pages
And those couple of Artisan Lamps.

©2016 Barry Smith - Tall (about 55cm high) Artisan Lamp 
©2016 Barry Smith - Tall (about 55cm high) Artisan Lamp 
©2016 Barry Smith - Standard Blowtorch Artisan Lamp
©2016 Barry Smith - Standard Blowtorch Artisan Lamp
The client chose the more standard blow torch lamps.  More on the big etched books on Sunday as I hope to rivet the pages together tomorrow. Now off to a printmakers' BBQ.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Seeking white in autumn morning light

As you might know the sun is rising later and later in our valley and mountains. The early morning walks tend to start just as the sun is giving first blush off light to the valley and mountains. It struck me that the only blossoms that I could see were white ones - so I decided this week to focus on finding white in the dim light.

So the photos below are part of the exercise of finding white - some are not great shots as the light was pretty low and the iPhone was not really up to the task on occassions.

©2016 Barry Smith - White bougainvillea
©2016 Barry Smith- The last struggling daisy with dew
©2016 Barry Smith - Delicate dew drops
©2016 Barry Smith - White catching the first rays of morning light
©2016 Barry Smith - Hiding in low light
©2016 Barry Smith - Tiny offerings - about 1cm long
©2016 Barry Smith - Floating
©2016 Barry Smith - Lime blossom - still hanging in there
And a few photos showing the contrast between the first blush of light and a little later as the light bathed the valley in peach colours.

©2016 Barry Smith - The transition from night to day in the valley
©2016 Barry Smith - More colour created into the valley
©2016 Barry Smith - Peach morning light and cloud puddles
Fiona tells me it is about 5 weeks to the shortest day of the year for us down under so I guess there will be more photos in low light and off soft morning sunrises.