Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Story Without End, In-Progress - Part One.

Great to be back here. Let's begin. After spending the morning at an excellent antique store in Toowoomba, I choose to launch with this beautifully worn and patinated oyster shucking knife. The egg-shaped girth of the handle is great for the utility of the tool, but won't serve me in its new incarnation. What that diameter WILL give me, however, are options - options on what and how to carve and drill into all that wood.



 A slice of handle is removed, to give me a 'frontal' area. I am also preparing to remove a large cylinder of wood from the middle. Here, the first small hole is drilled in the interior of my big circle, to give the jewelers saw a helping hand in sawing such a thick bit of timber.

  Then a smaller area is carved out to make a rear view.

I have selected a balance point to run a tube-rivet horizontally through the handle. At this point I imagine leather going through that tubing, though I'm leaving it open to change as the piece develops.

Now a bold moment: I drill the steel blade after testing to make sure it's not too hard. Steel that is this old and has been exposed to salt water over many years is quite brittle, so this is a do-or-die point.

Now I can spend some time sawing through the blade to remove much of the steel. Due to the brass finger-guard shape, many saw blades are expended as I work my way carefully around.

The whole object becomes much lighter as so much metal is removed. I do have plans to bring the cut-out hunk of steel back into the piece, though.

De-blading the blade.

The interior piece is shaped and will hang suspended inside the form.

Now to the handle of the knife. I am given a small flared lens assembly from a microscope, which is what I sized the large hole in the handle to. This is provisionally friction-fit in place while I go about designing the title plate. 'The Story Without End.' is a title I've had in my files for over 20 years, and etching it onto the copper plate brings me back to early days in my studio; to the endless hours poring through old books finding interesting snippets of text.

Note here also - a profound change in the design of the piece. The tube-riveted area was no longer a proper balance point for the piece, which I had figured might become the case. Two beautiful knurled old equipment bolts work their way right through the copper tubing to become an anchor point for some decorative steel chain. The brass finger guard has been pierced on the left and right and will now become the attachment point for the pendant to be worn. 

I've decided to have the title plate recessed into the front of the piece, so I go about carving out the space for it to occupy.


Next week we'll see the piece come together as the chain is finished and the detail in the body of the piece - front and back - is worked out.

Keith


 

40 comments:

  1. WOW Keith, I think this is going to be my favorite piece of yours. The work you did with the blade is stunning. Cannot wait to see more!

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  2. Been missin' ya! Inspiration abides & you're "The Dude". Blessings.

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  3. Love the blade. Can't wait to see the finished piece!

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  4. Looking forward to having a closer look at the blade from Toowoomba, the patina looks awesome. Aw shucks!

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  5. That blade conversion was just short of amazing-

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    1. This is a beautiful piece. Thanks so much for sharing your process. And for the class I attended in Petaluma, it changed the way I work and I can't wait to take another one with you.
      By the way.. did you use the hummingbird scull yet?

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  6. oh nice. You once again went in a direction I was not expecting, L-O-V-E. I carve faces in handles like these, then partially insert the knife part into a wood body, exposing the knife as a neck! Im inspired to go carve something now.
    Cheers
    Steph b

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  7. The work on the blade is astounding - can't wait for the next installment of this transfiguration!

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  8. scribble scribble... This is FANTASTIC... but I am not surprised!!! Katherine Valley Ridge

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  9. Love watching your work evolve. Love the cut to the blade and the lens to the handle. Can't wait to see it progress. Lynn O. from Illinois

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  10. wow, you continue to amaze every time...thanks for sharing!

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  11. I really love what you did with the blade. The change is astounding. And of course, it never would have occurred to me.

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  12. Awesome! Looking forward to next installment! I sooooooo wish I lived near a place called Toowomba ... How cool is that for a place name!

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  13. You've outdone yourself once again, lad. Or is it "mate" in Australia? Anyhoo, wow, wow, wow. Can't wait to watch its journey to completion. Thanks, I really needed this boost of inspiration!

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  14. Thanks for sharing this! Looking forward to the next chapter.

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  15. Hey Keith, thanks so much for showing us your amazing creative brainworks!

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  16. Keith, so nice to have you back. Seeing you work progress is so instructive, almost mind blowing! Reading this is almost like sitting in a warm studio in snowy Colorado with you. I hope you do a blurb on your up coming on line workshop. There are so many questions about how the venue works, what you will cover, etc....

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  17. Your eye for detail is truly amazing. Thank you for sharing your process.The titles you choose really bring up the depth of thought that shows in your pieces. Your handling of materials is exquisite. I look forward to the next installment of Story Without End.

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  18. Awesome Keith! Your blog posts are like LoBue micro workshops! Wouldn't miss 'em! See you this Fall at VRAS! oxox! -b.

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  19. PS Knurled is a fabulous word, isn't it? ;)

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  20. I am amazed as always...
    I look forward to part 2
    cheers
    R

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  21. Wonderful to watch your process...I now regret not signing up for your ArtFest workshops, now that AF is done!

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  22. Keith,
    Your genius and imagination are unparalled! Bravo!

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  23. wow keith, amazing piece!... i miss you over here in the states... hope your coming back sometime in 2012 even though petaluma last yr wasn't so great... i need a class from you! yona

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  24. Keith, darling, thank you for this informative post! Bravo!!! That business of opening up space in the blade is so inspiring! xoxox Claire

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  25. Wow, Keith, that is SOME INSPIRATIONAL CREATION. Can't wait to see what else your soul comes up with. Thanks for sharing!
    Melodie

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  26. Hi Keith! Thank you SO much for sharing your process on yet another amazing piece! I'm breathless with anticipation for part 2!
    Toni (Art is...Petaluma 2011)

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  27. Gadzooks Lo Bue you've done it again ... a breathtakingly beautiful piece ... Mann oh Mann your sawing is superb ... excited for the next instalment, Thank YOU!

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  28. You're all too kind - thank you for this lovely show of support!

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  29. Welcome back Keith! And what a marvelous piece to start with. Your sawing is truly amazing and you have such an eye for the possibilities in everyday objects. I look forward to watching this piece evolve.

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  30. Keith You are amazing!!!! Watching the process is wonderful! I can hardly wait till next week!

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  31. amazing what creative ideas come from your brain, what a blessing! aloha, angi e in hana

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  32. Keith, Just when I decide there is no time in my life for the persuit of creating unique wearable art you send me this and now I want to create more then ever. The problem is, as I have learned, desire does not an artist make. I absolutely love what you are doing, and now, your fault totally, I am going to start sawing and banging once again!

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  33. Love the way this is shaping up - you have a very lateral brain sir! I like that you design by making but with such careful consideration. Looking forward to the next installment!
    x
    sue

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  34. What a wonderful thing to share. Wonderful to see how your mind sees the path and changes as needed. I love it and can't wait for the next step!!
    Ann

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  35. Love to see the progression. And what an inspiring way to go about sharing your creative process. Thanks.

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  36. Hi Daddy :) it's amazing but I'm not surprised at all since it's you making it. Love you and miss you heaps! Xx Mira

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  37. OMG when you cut into the blade part totally amazing

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