The Basswood in Fall

Basswods bereft of leaves. Back left, a maple.

The first light frost of the season. Light also because the dog and I were slow to get out this morning. And, an appropriate response to frost: fire! By the way, basswood makes excellant kindling, which is a good thing as I generate a lot of scrap.

Have a nice October Sunday!

More frost. This photo has been "jacked" up a touch, just playing.



The Morning Basswood

Turning yellow as the weather cools; a crisp 30 something this morning, with the faint sounds of the ND marching band from the stadium. Football this afternoon.
And not The Morning Basswood. I like the surreal stillness.
Both taken with a regular camera. Smart phones have great cameras now, and have become the camera of choice for many .... but they are not very ergonomic in user terms. As a quick visual note taker, random pussy cat snaps, or doing bank deposits, it's nice to have one close to hand. Fortunately for me, the small "enthusiast" cameras are great machines, with superb image quality, and much better ergonomics than the phone, and a chance that they will survive the phone camera onslaught.

Addenda: Later in the day.

There is one area where phone cameras absolutly excell; sharing instantly with others, across the nation or just the room. The big camera companies have all failed miserably on this. My very nice little Canon S110 has the most cocked up wirless capabilities, and supposedly I can link it to my phone to send images, but they aren't full resolution. What? And it's very complicated to implement. With my phone I can Airdrop the image to my iPad, or email it, or message it. No cumbersome set-up, it's just there and works. As to image quality, some of my favorites came from really crappy cameras under abysmal conditions, including my original, 1st. generartion iPhone.


5s photo, blood moon.

A much better photo from the Apple camera, than the previous one. And not only is Wednesday a full moon but there will be a "Blood Moon", an eclipse of the moon. Starting around 5 AM, ET.



Interview with Apple's Jony Ive



"He sees design schools failing their students by moving away from a foundation in traditional skills. "I think it’s important that we learn how to draw and to make something and to do it directly," he says, "to understand the properties you’re working with by manipulating them and transforming them yourself."






Summer has lingered into early fall with beautiful days and cool nights, and just the start of turning leaves.

Photo from a new camera, iPhone 5s. The latest phones are too big; I'm hoping Apple will come out with a "mini" version of the latest and greatest, though not likely for at least a year and maybe two. The 6 series is attractive as tablet, much less as phone, and would have required changing the way I carry and handle a phone.

Soon, a post on process of some current projects as I start to finally catch up.



The Essence. The Original Object vs a Reproduction.

I've been saying this for a long time, but actual research has been done. It's a quick read.


I haven't been posting in a while, too busy, and a little "bored" with the blog, though I'm not quite ready to cease. Here, one of my (mine) favorite paintings:

 It's much better in person, see above.



The tree roots have grown around the bottle. Tree, Red Mulberry.

"Red mulberry is used locally for fenceposts because the heartwood is relatively durable. Other uses of the wood include farm implements, cooperage, furniture, interior finish, and caskets."

(Martin, Alexander C., Herbert S. Zim, and Arnold L. Nelson. 1961. Mulberry family: Moraceae. In American wildlife and plants. p. 313-314. Dover Publications, New York.)

The tree in fall. Bottle is under the leaves, left side of trunk. Old phone photo.

Google mulberry wood for some images of the beautiful wood.


The tree today.



Edward Hopper, 1882-1967

Sun in an Empty Room
Private Collection

Edward Hopper, born today, July 22nd. 1882. The above, a late painting, showing to my eye, the "abstraction" he was not noted for. Often spoken of as a "realist", I find him to be both an abstract painter and a surrealist, and less concerned with a realistic vision than an emotional one.

“If you could say it in words, there would be no reason to paint.” ― Edward Hopper

Originally posted 7-22-12



One of the neighborhood basswoods is close to flowering:

And on a blog note, I have turned off comments as I was tired of dealing with the spam. Comments, great thoughts, questions, email me.




OOPS ???

Unexplained mysterys, or maybe it's the "old math", done in a new way. I didn't catch this until the frame had been joined and splined, by my customer calling wanting the exact rabbett size. A gut wrenching moment, as we are on a deadline.

Once I've confirmed my idiocy, rather than rush into correcting, I've found it's better to walk away for a bit; let the nerves settle, and think about the proper procedure for correction.

And here, waiting for splines to be fit and glued in, and the proper size now.


D-Rings, or strap hangers


Some examples of D-Rings, or strap hangers. Far more secure than screw eyes. All of us who restore antique frames have seen damage from screw eyes failing. Screw holes should be drilled for the strongest installation. If wire is to be used, the hanger should optimally be angled in the direction the wire will go. On larger frames, two hangers matched to two wall hardware, is best. This requires some precision in measurement and installation. Securely wrapped wire loops can be attached to the D, allowing some adjustment to the wall screw or bolt. For really heavy objects, I usually make cleats, sometimes known as "French Cleats" from plywood. Two strips of ply with matching angles cut on the edge, attached to the frame and the wall so they can hook together.

Now, if you insist on screw eyes, at least wire them right.

1. Through the eye

2. Around the shank, and below the wire.

3. Back through the eye.

4. Wrap the wire around it self.

This makes the wire as low as possible, reducing the force against the one little screw. Physics. Also, as the route the wire follows is more complex, this makes the wire less likely to pull free.

There are commercially available other forms of frame hardware, some that include mechanisms for leveling.



Apparantly, mechanical competence is a hindrence to artistic genius, grumbles the old curmudgeon.



Bad Choices in Hanging Hardware, or "Hey, you artists, get offa my lawn".

Some examples from a recent exhibition I installed. 

Screw eyes are bad, made worse by wireing around the eye, so physics can have it's say, and leverage can pull that screw eye right out. Bending, then pull-out, followed by crashing. If one insists on using outmoded tech, at least run the wire through the eye, around the shank, then back out the eye, then wrapping.

Now the staples, well, they were actually solid, at least until the staples start to loosen as the wood ages and shrinks.

Personally, cup holders are never going to be a good choice. This particular frame is relatively heavy, and the cup holder is already bending from the strain. Soon, the fall.

Solutions, next post.


Now, gone with the wind.


Yesterdays poppies have been blown away by the winds, though it was a delightful day, cool dry and sunny. This morning the basswood bracks are littering the ground, victoms of the wind. I just discovered that basswood leaves are good as salad greens. Here, more on that.


And something else: Night Rabbits

I think i need my tripod, or monopod.