Archive for July, 2008

Some other blogs:

Hey guy’s,

These blogs contain some really good reading. Some of the people are making some interesting stuff to so check them out:

http://jackbaumgartner.wordpress.com/

http://moseleywoodworks.wordpress.com/

http://rogersfinewoodworking.com/blog

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William Morris

“I must needs think of furniture as of two kinds: one part of it being chairs, dining and working tables and the like, the necessary work-a-day furniture in short, which should be of course both well made and well proportioned, but simple to the last degree….But besides this kind of furniture, there is the other kind of what I should call state furniture, which I think is quite proper even for a citizen: I mean sideboards, cabinets and the like, which we have quite as much for beauty’s sake as for use; we need not spare ornament on these, but may make them as elegant and as elaborate as we can with carving, inlaying or painting; these are the blossoms of the art of furniture”.

William Morris – 1882

What’s on the Agenda

I’m currently in the process of designing and making some chairs. These will be for a commission including a side chair, arm chair and a bench seat. Mackintosh, Rhulman and Henery Van de Vield are my main inspirations at this point. The chairs will seem curved and flowing from the elevation and side elevation views but sharp and dimond like from the plan view. Hense I have nick named it the ‘Diamond Chair’, which also symbolises the wealth of research, time, skills and hopefully money I recieve from it.

Mackintosh chair

Quotes by Ruskin, Fornasetti and Morris

Ruskin states: “that imperfection is in some way sort of essential to all that we know of life. It is the sign of life in a mortal body, that is to say, of a state of progress and change. Nothing that lives is, or can be, rigidly perfect; part of it is decaying, part nascent…. And in all things that live there are certain irregularities and deficiencies which are not only signs of life, but sources of beauty…. To banish imperfection is to destroy expression, to check exertion, to paralyse vitality. All things are literally better, lovelier, and more beloved for the imperfections which have been divinely appointed, that the law of human life may be Effort, and the law of human judgment, Mercy.” 1853 “What I look for in every object,” said Fornasetti, “is the mark of man.” The ‘mark of man’ or the mark of the hand? John Ruskin in response to the writings of Henry Cole, who attempted to promote the co-operation between art and industry in conjunction with the Great Exhibition of 1851, stressed the importance of work by hand as opposed to mechanical work, for the good of the product and for the well-being of the worker involved in its manufacture. (William Morris absorbed these words and in) Ruskin’s second volume of The Stones of Venice – The Nature of Gothic, Morris argued that “man-made articles should reveal, rather than seek to disguise, their origins, and that individuality and roughness of workmanship were infinitely preferable to the perfection and standardization, in a free and just society…. Asserting the superiority of the products of the creative craftsman over those of the factory.”

Some words of wisdom…..????? I personally agree with such statements, and for me a source of inspiration. For those craftsmen seeking perfection (as am I) perhaps we should take note of Ruskin, Morris and Fornasetti. Three exempt designers and artists excusing the imperfection of the hand.

Bed Side Tables

These bedside tables have been constructed using the traditional drawer and frame construction. This consists on many tenon joints (usually double tenons) with complementary haunched tenons and dovetails. Ranging from a whopping eight to ten joints per leg, all of course hand done. You wouldn’t believe this would you from looking at them. I would like to point out now that there is a reason why the most prestigious and debated joint is the ‘secret dovetail’. It’s because a good craftsmen doesn’t need to show off his goods! Craftsmen pride themselves on quality, therefore the choice of the joint shouldn’t be for grandeur or show but for its practicality. When viewing a piece where someone has sought to prostrate their joinery, and especially if it is the wrong type for the purpose required, then I only look on with disgust. A good piece of furniture shouldn’t need the grandeur of displayed joinery to sell it, that is a failure in design!

Bedside Tables

Bedside Tables

Practise Joint for leg construction

Practise Joint for leg construction

Practise Joint assembled

Practise Joint assembled

Please excuse the dates on these images – camera troubles

Begining to get to know my work

Whilst you can read a longwinded explanation of who I am and what I’m about I thought I’d let you view my work. Please feel free to comment and open discussion on them. Also I am interested in what you are up to so leave links!!!

A Cabinet of Curiosity

A Cabinet of Curiosity

A Cabinet of Cruiosity
A Cabinet of Cruiosity
Cabinet of Curiosity

Cabinet of Curiosity

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Made from American Cherry and Birdseye Maple. Some of the joinery includes hand cut dovetails, laped mitres and birdsbead tenons with complementry  table saw and routed splined mitres.

The first post

“You can teach a man to draw a straight line, and to cut one; to strike a curved line, and to carve it; and to copy and carve any number of given lines or forms, with admirable speed and perfect precision; and you find his work perfect of its kind; but you ask him to think about any of those forms, to consider if he cannot find any better in his own head, he stops; his execution becomes hesitating; he thinks, and ten to one he thinks wrong; ten to one he makes a mistake in the first touch he gives to his work as a thinking being. But you have made a man of him for all that. He was only a machine before, an animated tool.” Ruskin 1853

I view my blog as a source of inspiration, as I intend to view others, thus such quotes as this by John Ruskin will be one of the main features of this blog. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!