Free Form Carving

In a previous post, here, Studio Scenes III, I mention a random orbit sander. There are actually two, except for color, identical machines. The one in the back, light gray, has a flexible pad, for sanding curved forms. The black one has the standard pad for flat surfaces. Below, some other tools for free form carving, both for furniture and picture frames.

Left to right, a small electric chain saw, an industrial grinder, that has grinding heads, cut-off heads, sanding pads, and just in front, a chain saw wheel. To the right of that, an air die grinder, fitted with a large carbide burr. There are a variety of cutters, grind wheels, cut off wheels, etc., available for it. I have a slightly smaller one that has different size collets allowing me to use some of the same tools for my Foredom tool, here. Then, the random orbit sander with the flexible pad.

Some examples of frames and furniture that used some or all of the tools mentioned above:


Apropos rants.

Andrew Sullivan has a nice response to the President of the United States remarks the other day, appropriate to my own thoughts:


Studio Scenes III

Another corner of the studio. Previously, here, and here. At the bottom, black hump is a shop vac, which is connected to a random orbit sander by that white hose. To the left, a belt sander, which is a handy tool to have in any shop. Grind things, shape wood ...etc. A little higher on the right, a magnetic tool holder holding metric allen wrenches, and old brad driver, and some hemostats, another tool that comes in quite handy at times. Above, and to the left, my joining vise and the two support boards.

Here the combination at work, with the vise being obscured by the frame being joined. I'll take some better pics showing the set-up, soon, not now. 8-) , and a post with some more clarity about mitre joining.


The walnuts have started dropping, sometimes with a resounding thump. Previously, here, I've written about Walnuts. That post was from September 27, 2011.

Today, July 21, 2013 seems early, not that a few don't drop early, but for me to notice the roof thumping. The squirrels will be happy.

Basswoods, and Rants.

I'm sorry, I seem to have been side tracked, and have been neglecting the Basswoods. Above. petals and bracts on the street. With careful observation, one might deduce that I live on a street that is paved with bricks. A recent post explains bracts.

And now, a little curmudging from the Hinterlands:

Some rambling rants from the Hinterlands. You might sense a certain, liberal bias, but I’m actually a fiscal conservative. Never could figure out, why the so called conservatives ran up such debt; then a tax and spend liberal could balance the budget, and have surpluses. Must be missing something.

Government, why this hatred for government?  This, " drown it in a bathtub"?   Safe food, and water?Paved streets? Police and Fire protection? National defense? Weather warning systems? Well, Grover, back in my youth, there was a saying, "love it or leave it". I just don't get it, hating government from folks who proclaim themselves  "patriots". Yes, I know there are excesses and overreaches, but let's move on, cause I seem to be missing something.

Ahh, Unions. So, how many in favor of no limits on hours worked per day? Hours per week? Benefits? Nah, you don't need benefits, we, your employers will take care of you. And, if business is slow, well, you
could work for less pay, to help us out? Ohh, you’re hurt? You're fired,must have been doing something wrong. Ever hear of company script,that could only be used at the company store? Oh children, you should read some history. But,again, I seem to be missing something; moving on.

Detroit and the auto industry. Not much is ever mentioned about a huge problem; we all drive toyotas and hondas now. I know, they make em here, in non union plants, cause we all think unions are evil. Where do the profits go? Again, I seem to be missing something. And, along these lines, when much younger, I couldn't understand Jewish people, driving Mercedes Benzes, sending profits to people, who in some cases, literally tried to exterminate them. Must be missing something.

Race? The President gave a very nice little speech, talk the other day, in which he very gently tried to explain what it is to be an African male. Mostly, the rabid, right wing attack dogs left it alone, though there are always exceptions. Some egregious exceptions. The more “foamy at the mouth’’ ones are saying racism is over in America. Say What? I’m sorry, but I’ve already had some issues with my “African, Catholic, Jewish” kid, and with my “Chinese Catholic” kid. Not to mention the Polish, Lithuanian stuff. John Scalzi, well known author, has written a nice piece, somewhat on this  subject:  So, if you’re a straight, white, male,  ..... maybe you should  ....  shut up.


Gettysburg, Melville, Longstreets's assault on the Union lines.


O Pride of the days in prime of the months
  Now trebled in great renown,
When before the ark of our holy cause
Fell Dagon down-
Dagon foredoomed, who, armed and targed,
Never his impious heart enlarged
Beyond that hour; God walled his power,
And there the last invader charged.

He charged, and in that charge condensed
  His all of hate and all of fire;
He sought to blast us in his scorn,
And wither us in his ire.
Before him went the shriek of shells-
Aerial screamings, taunts and yells;
Then the three waves in flashed advance
  Surged, but were met, and back they set:
Pride was repelled by sterner pride,
  And Right is a strong-hold yet.

Before our lines it seemed a beach
  Which wild September gales have strown
With havoc on wreck, and dashed therewith
Pale crews unknown-
Men, arms, and steeds. The evening sun
Died on the face of each lifeless one,
And died along the winding marge of fight
And searching-parties lone.

Sloped on the hill the mounds were green,
  Our centre held that place of graves,
And some still hold it in their swoon,
  And over these a glory waves.
The warrior-monument, crashed in fight,
Shall soar transfigured in loftier light,
A meaning ampler bear;
Soldier and priest with hymn and prayer
Have laid the stone, and every bone
Shall rest in honor there.


More Basswoods

The light green, long and slender leaves are bracts, leaves that are usually different from the foliage leaves, and associated with flowers and reproductive parts of the plant.

The flowers are mostly done; the ground under the trees is littered with petals and bracts. The small green balls are the developing fruit. And the rich, round, buttery smell is dissipating.



Civil War Monument, Cassopolis, Michigan

Dawn before Gettysburg
Edward Hopper, 1882-1967

Today is the 150th. anniversary of the final day of battle at Gettysburg, PA. The popularly named Pickett's Charge, and to me, the very important East Cavalry Battle took place on this day. General George Armstrong Custer, and his Michigan "Wolverines" quite possibly saved the day for the Union by sacrificing themselves to prevent General JEB Stuart from attacking the Union lines from behind. General Custer led, from the front, repeated charges and counter charges.

Thure de Thulstrup - L. Prang and Co. Battle of Gettysburg

Civil War Monument, Mishawaka, Indiana


Studio Scenes, II

Studio scenes, see here.

A corner of the "kitchen" which is where glue and gesso are cooked, shellacs prepared and a lot of materials are stored. Above, with labels. The acrylics are used for "faux finishes".

Another part of the former kitchen. This is the rack for my dry pigments, for egg tempera painting. The top row is for inks for my small collection of fountain pens, Mostly for writing, though there is one that is a dedicated drawing tool, and another that sometimes is used for drawing. Both of those are filled with Noodler's "Heart of Darkness" black ink. Just to the right of the rack, a carved dowel rod, that I use as a mahl stick. Mine does not have a round, padded end, as my stick doesn't move, so I see no need for one. To the left of the rack, brightness, is a north facing window. I also use a combination of an incandescent light and a florescent light, which comes close to the north light I get from the window. To the left of the rack, on the wide shelf at the bottom is a glass palette, and two covered water containers for brush cleaning. I have a spray bottle filled with distilled water, for thinning mixtures, nearby.