Saturday, July 28, 2012

I feel like a criminal

I have just broken one of my cardinal rules. Old houses have this patina that shows their age and reflects the passage of time and the people who have lived in them.

We are in the process of putting new ceilings up in the bedrooms. Tongue and groove was a 60s/70s horror story best removed. But...... the floors in both main bedrooms is the most beautiful pitch pine with a wonderful deep colour made by generations of waxing and oiling.

In the biggest room, there has been considerable movement and many of the joints were now steps. It made cleanbing and polishing a nightmare as the mop kept catching and leaving bits of wool everywhere.

So I took the belt sander to it and removed the work of ages!! It is now very smooth indeed (probably get complaints that the rugs slide) Two coats of linseed oil and turps done and a good wax to come. It all looks a bit fresh and new but is still a good colour. Hopefully, it won't be too long before it looks a bit well used again.

One good reason for redecorating was that the bedrooms were painted in gloss blue!! We've lived with them like this for six years and thought it was about time for the paint to go.

NOTE TO SELF - Clean the camera lens.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Its that time of year again

Its time to string up the onions, garlic and shallots. Usually, we have them hanging in our middle room and I regularly bang my head on them in passing. This year we have a proper storage room with opening grill so not only will they - hopefully - last longer, but my head will be saved a few bruises.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Wooden art

I never cease to be amazed at the difference in attitude to wooden 'art' in various countries. In the States, its taken as seriously as any other kind. In the UK and to a huge degree in France it seems a very poor relation to other forms. Pottery, painting, 'installations' (for god's sake!!) is considered deeply meaningful but wood, especially turning doesn't seem to register.

Why is this? It takes the same amount of skill, perception, artistic ability etc etc. Maybe its the link to practicality. Where is the art in making plates or bowls and why have them in wood when there are better, more modern materials??

I would not like to align myself with the section of the turning community that mock 'the brown and round brigade' but I can see what might make them feel that way. There is room for a beautifully made piece of simple turning, showing off the grain to best effect with an immaculate finish but..... those of us who look for more can find it very frustrating to find the lack of enthusiasm for our creations. A few are lucky or just so talented that they succeed but I am sure there are many more starving in their garret for lack of appreciation.

Anyway, I continue to try and find what its is I am seeking. Its just that I don't know what it is yet.

Here is a sculpture. The wood was rescued from the firewood pile where it had been thrown after making a large bowl. It is the direct cutting from the bandsaw, obviously cleaned up a bit!! I don't know what the wood is, but the figure and colour is fantastic. terrible rotten but that has been half the cause of the appearance.

The reaction on the UK was largely notable for its absence. In the USA, there was more understanding and appreciation of its 'whimsey'. However, I feel it is as genuine piece of art as any other and if I can't get the price I'm after at the gallery, it comes back home and lives where it will be given a place of honour! So there.