Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Box Elder Burl

I have a friend that is an arborist by profession and between "real" jobs he worked for a tree service and would occasionally drop some wood in my front yard on his way home.   He now has a real job and I don't see much wood from him anymore.  He had told me that he had a friend in Elkton Md. with a box elder with a burl on it that they were going to take down but I forgot about it until I got a call late November that it had been cut down and some was saved for me.  We decided to go up Dec. 1 and pick it up.  I got my father-in-law's truck and we drove 2 hrs.  This seemed crazy and then the three of us loaded these huge chunks of tree in the back of the truck.  The largest was 40" at the widest.  There was some red in it but it wasn't really red all over so I was thinking if this was a crazy trip.  But as you can see by the close up, the burl has promise.  I got a lot of blanks out of this, gave some to the club.

I roughed out some bowl blanks and took a couple of small burl blanks and made bowls from them.  They came out stunning and I knew I had a large blank waiting for me.  Finally on Christmas eve I got a chance to start turning the big blank.  I started between centers just enough to get it centered and make a foot to put a small faceplate on it.  I rounded it and cored it into two bowls.  My coring sucks and I did not want to make a funnel so one core was enough.

I have tried to make the best bowls I can and the two little ones did not move too much after turning wet so decided to turn one of these the wet.  I left it a little thicker than I probably should have but I wanted to be safe.
Here is some of the detail in the bowls and finally a shot of the shapes of the bowls.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Unexpected art in Fla.

.While in Florida to see Eckerdboy and Mom we tried to do a couple of events, mostly with him, to get some feel for Fl and act like tourists that we haven't had the chance to do for several trips.  We took Eckerdboy to a farmers market in St. Pete and a little "art arbor" at a local nature preserve.   The farmers market was lots of food, some farmers, music and some craft.  We had brunch and some time to talk.   The art arbor was pretty local craft with mostly "hippy" stuff: Tie dye, jewelry, one potter, ect.   Monday Eckerdboy had to go to class....really?    So the rest of us went to Sarasota and saw the end of the chalk festival.   Several blocks of a street are blocked off for a couple of weeks and let chalk artists go wild.  Sarasota is known for Ringling Brothers circus's  home base and this years theme for chalk was the circus.
Most of the 3D pictures had a place to stand so that you see it from the point of view of the artist. 
And if you stand at the point of view, the picture has a 3D quality an looks normal, but if you don't ... 
... this same picture looks distorted. 
 Some artist were still working even though it was supposed to be done the day before.
The high wire was where people could walk and be part of the picture.
 Sometimes I just don't get it....
 This is a wall from a building painted at last years chalk festival that went vertical. 
 Loved the color!
 What a face! 
 Ok... this is cool.... look at this pic and the girl with the red nose... look at this...NO, Not THOSE... The girl with the red NOSE at the top... see how far she is above the circle!
 Another type of circus. 
This was unique.  In the center is a cylinder shaped mirror.   If you look at the mirror...
... you see the circus.
Nice colors. 
 One of the few with an overt message.  Girls can do science!
This is just awesome!

I don't know, maybe it is the curious people at the circus.  
Then there are the curious people at the chalk festival.  Here is the performer.
Here are the neighbors in a parking lot. 
The expected and ...
... the unexpected.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Trips to other local clubs

Show and tell from Mid-MD club.
I made it to three of our local clubs for the first time: CAWMid-MD, and Chesapeake.   I went to be inspired, promote MCW, and learn about how other clubs run.  All three had completely different programs and my first impressions were that they all have different personalities and support members differently.   Mid md is a social mid-week club that is small but growing with several new members.
This was the demo.  He is a new member but wanted to demo.

Chesapeake and CAW are well established with all day Saturday demos, often with classes on Fridays.   CAW (2nd Saturday of the month) had an internal demo of Christmas ornaments and an auction of some of their equipent since they are loosing thier shop in the school.  I did not get any pictures but they had a great crowd and good demos.

Lamp that Alan made.
Cheasapeake (3rd Saturday) had Alan Leland.  He was pretty good, teaching techniques, not necessarly how to create a unique end product.  He did turn a small lamp and gave a lot of instruction along the way.

Chesapeake was also having a juried display upstairs from their meeting in Maryland Hall.  It was a good display of woodturning.  They have some talented turners and a variety of styles and skills. The winners were chosen by a colletor of wood art.

A cat bowl.

Natural edge "bowl" that I found very interesting,
not exactly sure how it works. 

Back side of the natural edged "bowl".

Thought the plate in the back was great.
A lot of burning and painting .

This small bowl was best of show as the "perfect bowl".

Pistacio shaped natural edged bowl. Love it!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

It has been an emotional month...

*** Personal story, not sure why I am rambling but I feel I need to write it... it may just make you sad and mean nothing to you so turn around now if you know what is good for you!

August has been a very emotional month.   Some of it was planned.  I was looking forward to take a woodturning class on the 8th and 9th with an MCW meeting the evening of the 9th.  The 10th-12th was a trip to take my oldest son to start first year of college in Fl at a school that I am not 100% sure that is the right fit for him, but sure he will do fine if he commits to it.  What wasn't in the plan was quick demise of our 15 year old beagle, Biscuit.

Biscuit was getting old and cranky and seemed to think that the carpet was his morning tinkle spot.  He has been living for years with heart and kidney issues with a full recovery from a back leg problem that took water treadmill treatments to fix.  The morning of Thursday the 9th,  my daughter, the main dog walker,  got up to go to work at camp with a sleepover and wouldn't be back until Friday night, and Biscuit woke up barely able to move.

We put him down Thursday afternoon and I made my meeting Thursday night.  We flew my son down to Fl. on Friday early.  Moved him in, bought him a bunch of stuff,  and went to events for parents at the school.  We, my wife, called our daughter Friday night to tell her the bad news.  We had warned the neighbors and they helped take care of her.   Saturday we took my son to his first class, we took him to see my mother, bought more room stuff, got him setup one more time and we left him so we could go eat with my mother.  We left early Sunday on a jet plane.   It has been tough in the quiet house.  I have found that Biscuit became more dependent on us as it got closer to the end and my son has slowly weened us off by staying at friends, staying out late at night, driving everywhere, and working full time.  It is funny how life works.

Add into all of this, the AC went out and we had to buy a new system, summer ending and having to go to work in a job that I took because there is no responsibility and great benefits, yet somehow, it becomes as stressful as when I had a job with responsibility.  (I really need a lottery intervention!)  I just went to a memorial service for a wife of a volleyball friend of mine that died unexpectedly from complications from kidney disease and questionable reactions at the hospital at the age of 53.  On the other hand I did get to spend some time at the Ag Fair turning with the club and I am excited about the magazine article I mentioned in my previous post.  I hope September calms down and gives me some calming fall events, maybe more woodturning.

I'm in a magazine!!!!

September/October 2012 Issue CoverI got my copy of Woodworker's Journal today (my first issue of my subscription!!).  I opened it up and there I was, pictures of me, my name in print, and my bowl!!!! OMG.. I had recently had my volunteer efforts in volleyball recognized and had a story in a local Patch website and then the local newspaper had to do it one better with a story but this is a national magazine, run by a seller of everything woodworking, Rockler.  The story of my entry I posted before but today it was official!  I can't link to the article because they want to sell magazines!
As I suspected I did not "win" the competition but entering was the win and being in the magazine is a win, win!   The write-up about the  winner is pretty interesting and she seems to be a very talented artist.    Time to get back to the shop...I think my 15 minutes are up!