Sunday, December 18, 2011

ANDANTE, In-progress, Part 2.

ANDANTE is nearing completion. When I posted last, I was preparing for the front lashing to enclose the doll's head. Now to it:

 I choose an antique cotton cord and design the pattern of twelve strands outside the head, and another twelve strands that go from the bottom of the cup, through it and through the hollow head, out a hole drilled in the top of the head.

 All twenty-four threads in place, I can now see that these cords are too sharp for the softness I'm looking to achieve. So I switch to an antique rayon cord, slightly thicker in weight, but feathery with a high sheen. Much better. I now begin the process of creating a kumihimo braid where the cords meet at the top of the head, which will double as an attachment to lock the porcelain head tightly to the cup.

 The cords arranged and ready.

 The first few rounds of braiding cinch the object securely.

 The spiral braid forming.
 I stop every few centimetres to assess the length of the braid.

 Now it has reached the point where I choose an object to 'cap' the braid. I find an exquisite star-shaped Medieval spur in my collection (not shown here), which finishes the piece.

To view ANDANTE in finished form:

To view ANDANTE along with purchasing information:

Thanks for looking, and I hope your holiday is a lovely one!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

ANDANTE, In-progress, Part 1.

Hello all and welcome to my first blog post in - well - seems forever. I'd like to show an incomplete but interesting set of images showing my new ring, entitled ANDANTE, coming together.

I had started the ring while on the road teaching - in Connecticut, to be precise. So there are no images of me beginning the alteration to the handle. I drill holes around the perimeter with the plan to lash down a porcelain doll head I bought on the trip. 

I am really enjoying extending the cup ring series, as it pushes me to treat each similar cup fragment in a totally unique way. Previous rings using this base element are Dissection of a Coquette's Heart (2004) and The Odalisque (2011).  

After drilling holes around the base of the doll's neck, I set about creating a webbing of waxed-linen thread around her head.

 Now, back in the studio in Sydney, I can resume work. The title is chosen for the piece and inscribed along the broken edge of the cup, to be engraved.

 After engraving, it is painted with dark umber paint and then sanded back.

 This brings the contrast and texture up.

 I go through several iterations of lashing patterns to discover the best one. Here, working out the order of passes.

Now a series of white antique cotton threads are passed up through the cup (anchored by this freshwater pearl)...

...and then through the hollow of the doll head and out through a hole drilled in the top of the head, to be utilized later.

Heavy waxed-linen thread is chosen for the rear anchoring and the attachment begins.

 Slow going, but coming together.

 Three more freshwater pearls are caged inside the hollow form, able to roll around but contained.

 As it works its way around, tweezers are the only way to keep going.

She reclines, ready for the front lashing and my inspired method to finish it off.

Next week!