Being fickle…

Being fickle is a problem. I completed this piece last week…(and even posted it here)…

The wall plaque is 26″ by 9″ and made of Oak with insets of sycamore. The sycamore was planished with a ball pein hammer and coloured with both acrylic and spirits to give a metaillic look and feel. They were then rubbed back and the high spots stained crimson.

I was happy with the result…until the day after. Something was wrong with it despite having been pleased with it the day before. Fickle you see.

So I lived with it for a few days and eventually thought I knew what the problem was. Focus. The focus was wrong.

So back on the lathe and rework it.

This is what I did…acrylic painted, and laquered sycamore convex disc inserted into a turned recess…

Now living in Wales. So maybe fickle is no bad thing.

catch up…

On saturday it was the Beccles Carnival. The town was packed, and the noise unusual. SWMBO and Ellie went to watch the parade, and later we met up with friends who are visiting and staying at a local beach-side park for a couple of weeks. The children enjoyed the fun fair, and then they played in the park beside Beccles Yacht Station until it was too dark to see if they were sneaking off. We had parked the vehicles at the workshop as I have private parking and the town was full.

As we came over the bridge I got to see the dusk to dawn ECO lights for the first time in full darkness. Sadly I only had my phone camera with me, so the picture isn’t great.

It’s handy having a place in  town and by the river…the coffee is always available and so cheap!

I’ve been busy “trying” to get some small (cheap) stock items turned over the last few days. Another full-time turner, and friend, gave a telling off because I don’t any “cheap impulse buys”  in the gallery. In truth I don’t enjoy making them, and as a result probably don’t do them well, but I could see his point and got busy. If they don’t sell in a week I may make him buy them!

This morning I had an accident whilst ripping some mahogany on the table saw. I was wearing eye protection over my glasses, and using a push stick when there was a “ping”. I distinctly recall seeing something at the same time, and turned my head to the right just as something hit me in the safety glasses. And it hurt like hell. John  was next door and rushed in (“expecting to be collecting fingers”, a he later claimed), turned off the saw and asked what has happened. I couldn’t answer in honesty. Both pairs of eye wear were missing, there was blood over my temple, and yet both halves of the wood being cut were on the saw table. Odd.

After looking at the small cut above the eye it was obvious that the cut was caused by impact with the inner arm of the my eye glasses, and not whatever it was that the saw spat at me…this remains a mystery. The only thing I can think of is that some debris was caught or dragged up by the blade, but as the blade discharges all waste into the dust vent this doesn’t seem possible. But something hit me!Thankfully I always stand with my head out of the direct line of the blade, which probably saved a fuller impact. Back on the horse though.

So take care even when doing things the right way.

I remembered the camera…

I seem to forget something every single day at the moment. I even started making notes in the diary…but I forget to look at the diary. Must be a sign of something.

Anyway, I remembered the camera so that I could take a photograph of the sail platter…

The next was going to be another to replace the one that sold on the lathe. But ended up not to be. It happens sometimes.

The next (once I started clicking I thought I’d take a few more…) is a multi-centre triptych wall plaque in stained and textured oak. Size: 27″ by 10″.

 The next is another wall plaque in oak, from the same board as it happens. Size: 26″ by 9″.

I’ve enjoyed playing for a few days,but now I need to make some small stock items as I have virtually none in at all. And as regular at craft shows knows, the small items often pay the pitch fees.

Second week nearly over…

I think we’re settled in now. Customers are arriving each day, local folk now know we’re here and are popping in during walks the day, holiday makers are finding us and popping in. All good.

Working here feels much better. It feels calmer and the desire to “play” has returned. Where I have the big wivamac lathe I can turn and look out of the workshop door and see this…

And it’s surprising how quickly you learn the tides and the rhythm of the river.

Heather likes the new place much more. There is land to run about on, ducks to bark at (and then run away from), but best of all a doorway where she can sleep in the morning sun…

All in all I’m enjoying turning again. For the last two days I’ve been working on a large wall piece in three parts, and it’s almost finished. As long as I don’t cock it up at the last minute (always a worry) it should be a good piece. The other day I completed a platter with rim decoration inspired by a lovely old sail boat that I watched on the river. It had a small version of a Wherry sail, once a common sight on the Broads, now sadly rare. I must remember to take a few pictures tomorrow.

First week over…

We’ve now had our first week at the new cobwebcrafts venue, and the difference is notable. Some of the visitors will clearly fall into the “curious about the new business on the river” category, but some of those have visited a second time through the week, so even those are encouraging. The main difference is that we are seeing people come through the door pretty constantly throughout the day. Interest is pretty evenly spread between John’s glass and my woodturning, so no problems there either.

It took until saturday before we had ironed out all the niggles of where things are going, which things need moving from where we’d first put them, and where some things were which went missing during the hurried move, but all apart from a pair of good scissors belonging to John are now safely located. The store was a mess of the highest degree, and we spent a day ripping it all out and building shelving and benches, and then putting it all back in some order. Having my 14ft kayak in there is a bind, but it’s something I wanted right from the start, and has already been useful. After work one evening I paddled up the river with the family and we had a picnic tea at Geldeston. It was a lovely evening…kingfishers, otter scrapes, clear water heaving with large fish, and a lovely setting sun over the meadows.

On saturday, having finished a few commissions, I thought I spend some time just turning for myself…it’s been almost three weeks since I did anything…and turned an off-centre platter in the style of one I had turned some time ago. But it didn’t make it into th new gallery as it sold while it was still on th lathe! I had two minutes to photograph it before it went off to France with the new owners. Sorry about the picture, but I haven’t sorted out a place to photograph things yet…

And so to the pictures…

The full size images are on the way by snail mail, but to tide you over here are some that will do for now…

Mayor Brian Taylor pulls the cord

And we're open...

Standing room only in the small gallery...

Chatting in the stained glassworkshop

Wooturners waiting for a demo!

celebrity chef Franck Pontais prepares the buffet

A link to the full picture set will follow shortly. Many thank to Mike Reading for acting as photographer for the day.

And we’re open…

The opening day was exhausting. An early start while we finished everything in preparation for the day, and day of chatting, explaining, showing around, and more talking. And it’s exhausting. It’ll be great to get back to real work by wednesday.

The photos of the day will follow shortly, but firstly a big thankyou to all those who came to support the opening, and to Mayor Brian Taylor and the Lady Mayoress for doing the honours on the day.

And just for Roger…better late than never?