Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Bits from NZ

Fiona and I went to NZ for a few days to celebrate my birthday. It was a few days of art, nature and relaxation. Following are a few images from the trip away - not a lot of people photos.

©2018 Barry Smith - Can you see it?  LOTS carved into Oneroa library wall
©2018 Barry Smith - Spiral Waiheke Community Art Gallery
©2018 Barry Smith - The Carrying of the Waterfall by Maria Llyod - part of a temporary sculpture trail in Oneroa 
©2018 Barry Smith - Big wooden heart - Dead Dog Bay Wetland Garden and Sculpture
©2018 Barry Smith - Tentatively hiding?  Wetland Garden and Sculpture

©2018 Barry Smith - Large ceramic 'woven' bow in front of flax plants used for weaving 
©2018 Barry Smith - Intrepid photographer crosses the wetlands
©2018 Barry Smith - Woven - by spiders or by ants?
©2018 Barry Smith - Flax seed pods against a very blue sky
©2018 Barry Smith - Bronze cockle shells on a weathered post - Oneroa
©2018 Barry Smith - Patinated beaten up name plate
We are back on the mountain; and doing a bit of catch up.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

A few fragments

There was no time for a walk on Treehaven Way this morning as we had to be up very early and on the road. So in this Wednesday iPhoneographic post I share a few images taken during the week.

First some fragments of a new wall in our local optometrist made from washed rough cut thin slices of timbers from railway sleeps or a bridge. The square holes seem to suggest "dog spikes" that held the railway tracks in place.
©2018 Barry Smith
©2018 Barry Smith
©2018 Barry Smith
©2018 Barry Smith
And a couple of photos of the setting sun shining through a western window and catching a rose and an orchid on the dining table.

©2018 Barry Smith
©2018 Barry Smith

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Vase and flower assemblage progressing

©2018 Barry Smith - Inside the top of one of the flower forms
I did not get much time over the weekend to progress art projects. I'm putting in quite a few hours doing painting of deck posts and railings. Putting people first has also taken a fair amount of time.

Still I'm happy with the progress. First job was to fit the copper sleeves into the cut off bases of the tulip vases.

©2018 Barry Smith - Copper sleeves inserted into the cut off bases of the vases.
And then over to the grinding and polishing bench.

©2018 Barry Smith - All looking shiny
Initially I'm glueing the various pieces together; and when the glue is dry I will put one or two rivets through the vase, the sleeve and the copper stem - binding it all solidly together.

©2018 Barry Smith - Assembling
I have left the tape in place to give the glue the chance to reach maximum strength - but even with the blue tape on the flowers are looking good in the train horn vase.

©2018 Barry Smith - Five flower forms looking good
©2018 Barry Smith - Five flower forms looking good
I like the shadow of the small flower form below.

©2018 Barry Smith - Flower form looking good
I'm thinking that I really need to make seven flowers so the bunch looks more sumptuous. That means I need to source another couple of tulip vases - so we will see.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Love is the answer

©2018 Barry Smith - Love is the answer - silver brass ingot with crystals and solid silver beads (about 2cmX2.5cm)
Mo Crow is doing a project with some of the key words being "I dream of a world where love is the answer". Some folk are making and contributing pennants; and some folk might be contributing talismans. The talismans for the project are to be special tiny pieces that are no bigger than 1.5cmX1.5cm.

I think of a talisman as something that one can: carry in one's pocket; have on a string around one neck; or in a small talisman bag of bits and pieces. So I decided to make a talisman out of melted metal - a powerful amalgam of different metals.

I started by cutting up some metal pieces I had melted some time ago.

©2018 Barry Smith - Cutting metal with my jeweller's saw
©2018 Barry Smith - Some cut bits
And then stamping them with the key word - love. I sort of got carried away and made 7 talismans; and one bigger piece. The metal stamp alphabet is tiny (about1-1.5mm); and I need to use a magnifying glass to check I have the right letter.

©2018 Barry Smith - Polished bits on the bench - the flip sides of the pieces have the beautiful patterns made as the metal cools.
Three pieces sort of fit together to make up the words - the answer is love.

©2018 Barry Smith - The answer is love
The other four are randoms.

©2018 Barry Smith - Random love
I need to check what I will send to Mo Crow.

©2018 Barry Smith - Peace 

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

A vibrant morning

©2018 Barry Smith - A circle of flowerettes within a flower
I'm always amazed that the same walk on Wednesday morning can always deliver new surprises. This morning I was just taken by: the blue of the sky, the strength of structure of the Satin Bowerbird's bower, bright blossoms and vibrant birds.

I will just share some of the beauty in the sequence I experienced them - apart from the detail of one of the flowers shared above.

©2018 Barry Smith - Tiny pink sun worshiper
©2018 Barry Smith - Satin Bowerbird's bower
©2018 Barry Smith - Touched by early morning sun
©2018 Barry Smith - Grevillea unfolding
©2018 Barry Smith - Seed pod on the road - stripped of its blossom and seed - looking like a miniature basket (about 1cm) 
©2018 Barry Smith - Fragile beauty
©2018 Barry Smith - Bunya Nuts by the vriadside
©2018 Barry Smith - Detail of Bunya Nut 
©2018 Barry Smith - Bougainvillea reaching up into the blue
©2018 Barry Smith - Two Butcher Birds in full song
©2018 Barry Smith - Rainbow Lorikeet feasting on Bottle Brush blossom
©2018 Barry Smith - Sun through a fallen leaf on the road
No wonder I came home with a smile and lift in my spirit.

Sunday, January 14, 2018


©2018 Barry Smith - Hammered section of a well worn silver-plated copper tulip vases
Fiona and I are doing quite a bit of work on our block and house at the moment - so time in the studio can be in bits and pieces.

I grabbed a couple bits of time over the weekend to make components for my flower assemblage sculpture including:

  • hammering the cone shaped sections of the flowers to be; 
  • making the circular pieces that will fit inside the opening section of the vases; and 
  • assembling the 25 stamen.

The cut down tulip vases can look pretty bad at the start - the beauty is under the grime.

©2018 Barry Smith - Silver-plated copper and brass narrow tulip vases with bases cut off
The hammering of the cone sections is done in a very systematic way using two different sized metal forming stakes. And after polishing the hammer marks become a uniting feature of the five flowers.

©2018 Barry Smith - Back from the polishing bench
©2018 Barry Smith - Five hammered and polished sections for the flowers
Again the metal for the sections that will be inside the trumpets are not really much to write home about. After pressing into their shallow bowl shape and given a first clean one can see the potential.

©2018 Barry Smith
©2018 Barry Smith - Pieces are cut and formed to sit inside the top of the trumpet section of the tulip vase.
The stamen are made from 1mm plastic covered stainless steel wire and 6-7mm glass beads - mainly purples and smokey grey-black.

©2018 Barry Smith - Like mini flowers?
©2018 Barry Smith
Other components to be made before assembling include: brass tubes to hols stamen, long copper tube stems and slightly larger copper sleeves to hold the stems and be glued into the base of the trumpets. These pieces will be made in the next week I hope.