Thursday, August 2, 2007

Stone carving

I have been forced through lack of timber to leave my warmish studio and head out to the cold and wet stone yard (or is that graveyard!) where various unfinished works lie waiting for inspiration or summer whichever comes first. The stone is an andersite, named because it was first discovered in the Andes, and the quarry is only an hour away so is reasonably local. It is very hard so diamond tools make life easier, a lovely blue-green colour and polishes well up to 3000 grit but it's downfall is that it is blasted in the quarry so tends to have fractures just where you don't want them.

I hope to have some Coromandel granite for our next symposium in November. This is found north of Colville on the Peninsula near Fantail Bay and has been quarried and used for some of our Parliament buildings. Softer than marble and very consistent it has a lovely fleck and can be picked up as boulders in farmers fields.

I'm working on a shipwrecked boat in two pieces, the lower piece supporting the boat and having a reservoir so I can pump water up through the boat to cascade over the side and back down to go up again. In theory it sounds good but I'm having trouble making it look natural as if the boat has been cast upon the rocks and abandoned. I want to craft an oar out of a piece of recycled kauri to make it look more authentic and maybe and old frayed rope from a bollard on the front.

Cutting stone with power tools at this time of year can be a bitch, by the time you assemble all the tools, supply the power, put on the overalls, the face mask, the ear muffs, turn the stone over and imagine what you are going to do, it's time for a cup of coffee!! Don't tell me I don't need my coffee! After watching a DVD of Australian artist Brett Whitely my addiction pales into insignificance.

1 comment:

Ed Maskevich said...

I know some of these feelings. At times I have to go from my somewhat warm studio (in the winter) to my unheated garage/workshop. Coffee, to some of us it is mother's milk.