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Thursday 4 July 2013

A few recent projects: A giant creepy-crawley to hand carved oak signs

There's been some very varied projects recently...

This giant Arthropleura (an ancestor of millipedes and centipedes from 300 million years ago) is the seat for a bench to be installed at Pucklechurch, near Bristol. The bench project has been in motion for a while now, but discussions with a local landowner have slowed things up a bit. I thought I'd get on with making the seat anyway, so it is ready for installation when things have been sorted out. It was mostly carved using power tools: chainsaws, Arbortech, Galahad and other angle grinder discs.

The seat is about 2.5 metres (approximately 8 feet) long and is carved from oak sleepers. The holes are where stainless steel threaded bar holds the sleepers together. They will be capped with wooden dowels when the bench is installed. The backrest has already been carved;
but I'm waiting to see where the bench will be situated before deciding on what kind of legs to fit to it.

Whilst working on the huge bug, I was also carving this charming gift for a commission. The quote: "A friend may well be reckoned the masterpiece of nature" was written by the American poet Ralph Waldo Emerson. The plaque is about 30 cm (12") long and shows an oak leaf, which ties in nicely with the oak timber that was used for the plaque.

Continuing with the carved oak plaques, this much larger one is destined to be fitted at the entrance to a new housing development near Bristol. All of the lettering was cut by hand and the sign is 159 cm (about 63") long . I am particularly happy with the contrast of the white lettering against the dark oak. The large 'V' is the logo of the developer, NT Voisey and Co.

9th October 2013:

Martin of NT Voisey has just very kindly sent me some pictures of the sign installed in place. Here's one of them:

At the moment, I'm focussed on sorting things out for the exhibition at the end of this month: 'Inspired' at Ashton Court, Bristol. Here's a sneak preview of the sculpture in progress. It looks quite cat-like at the moment, but will eventually be a strange-looking creature that would have evolved to eat the semi-mechanical insects from the 'Metainsecta' series ( see the previous post for more details).

Speaking of which, I'd better finish posting and get on with some carving - not long now before the exhibition opens!

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