Wednesday 30 May 2012

Struggling with Crackle

I am struggling to get consistent results with Crackle paint.I am using the JoSonja's system for creating a crackled surface and my problem is consistency.
Getting consistency on a small bit of board is a lot easier than on a large area like a wide rim bowl.

To enlarge pics left click on pic

This is the best one up to now Red on Gold.

This is a complete failure
Back to the drawing board and more practice.

Tuesday 29 May 2012

Jo Sonja's Coarse

Yesterday I attended a coarse to learn new techniques using the JoSonja's range of products.
The coarse was organised by Lynn from  Flutterby Crafts and held in their premises at Thatcham Link here
There was a small group of us and the day was very relaxed although a lot of information was given and hands on work was done.
The coarse Tutor was Vicki Nicholson an Australian lady that had worked for Croma's the makers of JoSonja's product for over 25 years.Vicki had a massive amount of experience  of using these products and passed on as much info as time would allow.
Some of the techniques we covered were Smoke Marbling,Gold leafing,Crackle painting and many more.
Some of these I will be trying out and incorporating in my work later.Here are a few pics from the day.
To elarge pics left click on pic.

Saturday 26 May 2012

Wessex Woodturners.

Did a Demo last night for Wessex Woodturners at Yandles in Martock.
A very enjoyable evening with a great club.
Thank you Wessex.
I have just spent the last six and a half hours doing pyrography on a Hollow form and only done less than half.

Thursday 24 May 2012

Half a dozen bowls

Hi all.
I have been invited to take part in two exhibition's so I have prepared a few pieces.
The first one is in the Somerton Gallery of The Somerset guild of Craftsman of which I am a member.The exhibition is in July so I have plenty of time but I thought I would go on and make something.The theme is Gold so I have made an Ash bowl 13" x 2" and coloured the rim with Gold iridescent paint.

To enlarge pics left click on pic

The other Exhibition is the Devon Guild of Craftsman Gallery Bovey Tracey in Devon.This Exhibition is next month and I have been invited to show several pieces .I am going to take a selection of bowls Hollow Forms and Wall plaques and let them choose the ones they would like to show.The following pics are the bowls I will be taking.These are the same size as the one above and the bottom is an OG shape.

Wednesday 23 May 2012

Yandles September show.

Yesterday Yandles confirmed they will want me to demonstrate at their September show.Two full days of demonstrating a bit tiring but great fun.An opportunity to meet lots of old friends and many new ones.Something to really look forward to.

Last night Sue meads the Secretary of our woodturning club popped around for a couple of hours.
Sue had a very nice bit of Apple wood that she saved from the fire it was a bit of crotch with quite a bit of burr.We cut it through the middle and Sue turned out a lovely pair of bowls.

Left click on pics to enlarge

Friday 18 May 2012

North Devon Woodturners.

Last night I did a demo for the North Devon Woodturners in a little old church hall about 5 miles outside Barnstable.
There was about 40 members turned up and I think they all enjoyed it I certainly did.They had a table with a lot of really nice work on it.They obviously have some very talented turners in the club.The finish on a lot of the work was amazing.The only disappointment was that novice turners had not put anything on the table.They are probably feeling a bit in awe of the good turners in the club.This is a pity as I think the novices would benefit a great deal by showing their works to the rest of the members it would make them work harder to achieve good results.There is no reason why novice turners should be deterred from showing their works as we are all novices when we start out.
I really enjoyed last night they were a great bunch.
I am hoping to get some pics of the works that were displayed on the club table and I will then put them on this thread.
Thank you North Devon Woodturners for a great night I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did.

Wednesday 16 May 2012

You are never too old to learn.

Hi all.

Yesterday and today I have been teaching an 84 years young gentleman.Alan has been turning on and off for quite a few years but felt he needed to polish up his turning skills.
We started off with the usual safety briefing and then moved on to coves and beads .Alan quickly got bored making coves and beads and I think at 84 he is entitled to do whatever pleases him.What he really wanted to do was sharpen up his tooling skills and then make a couple of bowls. Alan had never done any colouring and texturing work but was keen to experiment.At the end of our two days Alan produced one lovely Ash bowl that was left plain and one that was coloured and textured.Although we went through a lot of texturing and colouring techniques Alan decided the one he liked best was beaded scorched coloured and lacquered as you can see in the pic below.

To enlarge pics left click on pic

Monday 14 May 2012

A day out in London.

Several months ago members of Somerset Art works SAW were invited to create a small group of Artists with a view to working together.The object of the exercise was to explore ideas for creating works together and expanding our understanding of different medias within the group.
It was intended that the group would also look at ways of presenting our works to make them more saleable and explore ways of getting more of our works seen by the public.
On our first meeting five of us turned up and have supported the group ever since .Our new group was made up of a mixture of three ladies interested in fabrics two lady ceramicists and myself a woodturner quite a nice mix.We have now had quite a number of very productive and enjoyable meeting at SAW's headquarters in Langport which is quite Central for all of us.
At our last meeting Jan our group organiser told us that SAW had decided to give us a grant to further the work of our group.After some discussion it was decided we would ask SAW if this grant could be used to fund a research trip to the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.
Saw agreed to our request and things were set in motion.Tickets were bought for the train journey and arrangements made for Sunday the 13Th May.
In the meantime it was noted that there was two exhibitions going on at the same time in London one was in the OXO building on the embankment and the other at the Saatchi Gallery Sloan square.

The Oxo building was hosting The Handmade in Britain exhibition of contemporary crafts.
link here

The Saatchie Gallery was hosting Collect 2012 .
link here

We arranged for four of us to meet at Castle Cary train station and one of us from Taunton station.
Two of us arrived early at Castle Cary to be greeted by the information board saying our train the 9 50am was cancelled and the next one was at 12 30 pm too late for us as we were going to be pushed for time as it was.
We decided to call it a day but would wait and tell the other two the bad news.In the meantime there was another announcement saying our train was no longer cancelled and would still be running but an hour late.
We decided this would not be the end of the world and although we would be even more pushed for time we would make the most of our day out.
The information board kept changing about every five minutes but did eventually turn up as promised.
The journey to London Padding ton was quite uneventfully and we arrived about one O clock.Then we had the bit I really do not like the tube journey.Crammed into a tube train with hundreds of strangers rattling along at breakneck speeds is not my idea of fun.
Eventually after changing tubes several times and a long walk beside the River Thames we arrived at the OXO building and the Handmade in Britain Exhibition.If I like to be perfectly honest this turned out to be a bit disappointing and not in my opinion as good an exhibition as  the information available said it would be.There was 35 exhibitors crammed into what can only be described as too small a space.Some of the work was very well made and some was quite poor in my opinion.It seemed the only criteria for being able to exhibit and sell there was being able to fund the £600  00 for a very small space.To be fair everybody there was making the most of what they had and were very welcoming.
I think if we learnt anything from this exhibition it was that to present your works to their best advantage don't crowd your alloted space as it then starts to look more like a table top sale than a high quality exhibition.

Time was now moving on so we grabbed a sandwich and after a long walk and more misery on the tube we arrived at the Saatchi Gallery.What a place this is a fantastic building and an unbelievably amazing Exhibition.
This exhibition was totally different to the Handmade in Britain very very professional and of a very high quality.
The exhibition was not lone makers but Galleries setting up galleries within the building and individual makers within the gallery space.These galleries were from all over the world and we had the opportunity to see how the professionals do it.I would not like to guess the costs of setting up something like this but it probably runs into millions.
The exhibition area covered four floors and gave us the opportunity to see the makers of some of the best contemporary Art and Craft in the world.If we learnt anything from this exhibition it t was te reinforce the fact the real art is not crammed into small spaces but exhibited sympathetically.Another thing I noted here was how important lighting is.

We had intended making a visit to the Victoria and Albert Museum at the end of the day but this exhibition was so good and we were also now running short of time we decided to spend the rest of our day there.
A visit to the Victoria and Albert will have to wait to another day for me but that is something else to look forward to.
We left the  Saacthi Gallery at approx six O clock and made our way back to Paddington station with time left for a meal and time to catch our train home which thankfully was on time.I arrived home at about 11 pm a long day but well worth it.

On our journey home in the train we discussed the possibility of the five of us doing a joint exhibition next year for the Somerset Art Weeks event.
We have to find a suitable venue and agree a theme for 2013 .As a group we have found this very rewarding and I feel sure we will be doing some good works together in the future.
Thank you Somerset Art works for giving us the opportunity to be involved in this venture it has in my opinion been a great success..

On our day out I took over 250 pictures some of them are here for you to enjoy I hope.

To enlarge the pics left click on pic.