Friday, April 30, 2010

The bronze "Family" is ready for mold making. "Breaching Whale" mounted for the fourth time, with fins.

It feels like it has been a long week. But things are coming together here. Today we finished working on the pieces of the "Family" sculpture. Now that I've gotten it the way I want it they can make molds of all the pieces. After that is done then we can weld the original bronze pieces together and have the completed AP (Artist's Proof).

You have to imagine the dog's leash, the girls' braids, and the American Flags that the girls are waving. They will be fabricated and added later after the pieces are all welded together.

The Deer Park is just about ready to be cut up into pieces and have the molds made.

The Breaching Whale still needs work, but I think I'm getting the feel that I want. To me, when I have seen the humpbacks breaching, I think of strength, power, freedom and joy. If I can capture some of that I'll be a happy man.

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Family is the way I like it, now we can make a mold of it.

Laying down the first rubber part of the Swinging Jenny mold.

Preparing the Swinging Jenny for the first rubber mold

Narrowed the Mom's hips a bit. Cut out a section in the middle, squeezed the hips and legs in and welded her back up.

TIGing final corrections to Girl on Dad's shoulders

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

124/67 today's blood pressure. I guess I'm not too pumped up about being in Bangkok with the Red Shirts.

Sent from my iPhone

Flowers from my granddaughters sent halfway around the world via grandma's IPhone.

Soldiers with loaded guns on the sidewalk.

Non AC bus was very hot for a foreigner like me.

Bangkok SkyTrain shut down "Joy" helps me out to catch a bus back to my hotel.

Earlier I wrote:

I've checked into my hotel and now I'm having a cafe latte. The work at the foundry is coming along quite well. I keep having problems, but since there is nothing else to do but work I can't just walk away and find something more fun to do. So I just keep working and things eventually work out.
The wax sketches that I brought with me are all done except for patinas. I certainly wouldn't say they are great works of art, but I like them and think they are fun.

The Obama "Family" sculpture should be about ready to put together when I get back to the foundry on Friday. The one change I know I want to make is on the Mom: her hips are too big. Samboon thinks it won't be a problem. Those guys really know how to work with bronze.

The Deer Park which I've made in plaster is pretty much done. I just need to get some distance from it so I can see it with a fresh eye. I am leaving the rasp and tool marks in it. I think they give it an interesting texture, but a cool thing about making multiples is that I can have the wax ladies make a smooth version too. I'm planning to do the reverse with the Family, which is smooth. After they make a mold I plan to play with some of the waxes and give them some texture and see how that works out.

The Breaching Whale has been a challenge for me. It seems like each time I reach a certain stage the sculpture starts talking to me and want to be changed. The changes, like the twist so that he'll land on his back, make it more interesting, but they have also led to things breaking. Who said this was easy?

I heard that there were a bunch of Right Whales around the Vineyard. Did anyone see them?

Time for a shower and then off to a free dinner. Last week I went to a place I had liked when I was here years ago, but had a mediocre dinner. So I sent them an email and was thanked for my feedback and invited back to have one on the house. Sometimes it pays to complain

PS. The dinner was excellent. I had the "Thai Set Dinner". Best Thai food I have had on this trip. It was the Greenhouse Restaurant in the Landmark on Sukumvit.

After dinner when I tried to catch the SkyTrain back to my hotel it had been closed for fear of terrorism by the Red Shirts. That is when Joy found me and helped me out. The kindness of strangers is a wonderful thing.

Kneeling Girl and the Dog.

Chasing the "Family". A bad pun.

Back together. It can harden while I'm in Bangkok. With the steel it should hold.

Forms and Shapesb

Working on patinas for the Swordfish Harpooners

Once again I've broken the "breaching Whale". Good thing it is only the first step to a bronze.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Getting close.

Breaching Whale is ready for it's fins.

Pieces of the "Family" that was cast earlier today.

The far piece is off by a quarter of an inch to the left, it is work but I'll cut it apart and make it right.

Pouring the second base for the "Breaching Whale".

Buffet lunch at the Foundry. Choise of four types of soup. I chose pork.

My lunchtime friend

Red hot bronze The oured this morning The pieces for the "Family" are on the two ceramic shells in the middle. I'm looking forward to seeing it in bronze.

Had to reinforce the connections

Poured "The Family" this morning. All the pieces of it are in the two ceramic shells in the middle.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Hearts are pleasing forms.

Idea for a base for the small Swordfish Harpooner.

Aweek's work coming together.

The Deer Park is put together with the upside down hearts tempararily placed.

Holding the Breaching Whale in place while the plaster sets. Then I can work on the fins.

Making a plaster base to hold up the Breaching Whale.

The mold makes the Man.

Starting to put the Deer Park together, making Swinging Jenny mold in backround.

Swinging Jenny cut up for mold making.

Working on Hearts

Long hot day at the foundry

                It has been a long hot day at the foundry.  Even some of the Thais were taking breaks to stand in front of a fan and hold up their shirt so the wind breeze would cool them down. 


                Sometimes it seems like I just keep working and don’t make much progress and then there are times when you reach times where things come together and it a piece takes a leap forward.  I spent all morning working on the hearts for the Deer Park.  It was pretty tight meticulous work: the kind I’m not too good at.  I had been trying to make them directly in plaster and was getting frustrated so I make them in wax and then using modeling clay I made half molds and poured plater into the half mold to get three half hearts.  After the plaster had set I took the half hearts out and poured in new plaster and then put the first half on top to make a whole heart.  It worked out well enough, but it was hart to aline the two halves so it ended up being more work than I had hoped and probably more than if I had just continued working directly in plaster.


                Then late this afternoon I was able to put the Deer Park together and also mount the Breaching Whale in a plater base.  I hadn’t panned it, but playing around with it I realized that giving it a bit of a twist makes the whole piece much more dynamic and interesting, at least to me.  It makes it seem like the whale will land on his back.  Now that I’ve got it up in the air I can make the flippers.  They should really make it take off.

Fixing Jenny's "Swinging Jenny" that fell of the porch years ago.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Red Shirts and Army guns. Like a moth to flame I'm attracted to the action.

There seems to be a problem with embedding the video. It may be that anything to do with Red Shirts is being blocked here in Thailand or just that the wifi internet here in my hotel is screwed up. I'll try to fix it.

This I some video I shot with my IPhone on April 21. The first part was taken just outside the SkyTrain station where later that night 5 grenades were exploded killing one and injuring 85 or so. I was on the SkyTrain to complete my journey back from Laos via the night train.

The original "Deer Park" with two of my favorite little animals.

We call it "Deer Park" because when my mother used to come home late at night from her bridge games she would often see deer "parked" by the sculpture just like my grandchildren. Not having any other name, that one stuck.

   I made this out of an old steel oil storage tank I found at the dump back in 1978.  Obviously inspired by Alexander Calder it is a happy piece.  Even my sheep like to scratch their backs on it.

Temparary supports, we all need them at times.

Deer Park is taking shape. It is interesting working in plaster for a change.