Hammered Hollow Form

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Hammered Hollow Form, wood turning, carved
Hammered Hollow Form is a project that I rough turned in 2016 with the intension of carving flutes and giving it a hammered texture. I wrote a note on it’s side, as I often do, about my vision and set it to dry.

While rough turning, the walls are kept thick then left to dry for a period of time, before re-turning it. After drying the piece was turned again to achieve a wall thickness of about a half inch, thinner at top and bottom. The indexing on my Robust lathe was used to lay out the design lines and the blank was put in a box until I picked it up this winter.

This piece of Black Cherry came from a neighbors yard and grew deep inside the woods, long before there were homes here. The annual rings are nice and tight with a thick layer of sap wood.
work in progress
For carving I used a variety of tools, including Saburrtooth burrs, sanding drums, jeweler files and a lot of time hand sanding. Up to this point I have somewhere between 30 to 40 hours of work, not counting the turning time.
jewelers files
Since I wanted a hammered texture I needed to figure out how to achieve it. I tried making a hammer bit for my reciprocating carver but did not like what it produced. Finally I grabbed a piece of 3/8 tool steel and ground a dome shape to one of it’s ends and polished it smooth. I was a little apprehensive of using this punch, for fear I would crack my hollow form after all the time I had invested.
texture
Facebook has been a wonderful resource of information with many great artist out there sharing. One day after reading a comment, on a post, it came to me what to do. I picked up five pounds of lead shot, found an old sock with a tight weave, stuffed it inside the hollow form then filled it with shot. I placed the project on a sandbag and everything was solid. Using a small ball pean hammer I tapped my way around the form, with the punch, and produced a beautiful texture. This worked great and the project turned out like my vision, with a wonderful tactile feel to it. Watco Danish Oil was used as a finish and brings out the beauty of the wood.

Silver Highlights

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When the weather is warm, I go out to my garage workshop and turn several hollow forms, boxes, and other vessels for my inventory. I call these turnings my blank canvases, to be worked on in the quite and cold winter months. In my inventory I have possible projects with thick walls for deep carving and thin walls for surface modifications. This project, Silver Highlights, came from my extensive inventory.
hollow form, woodturning, embellishments

Like many artist I begin by drawing out my idea either on paper or directly on the project then look at it, on and off, for a few days. Once I am satisfied with the design it is time to go to work. The texture on this hollow for was mainly done with a wood burner using a skew and a writing tips. For the area above the wood burning, it is a hammered texture using a custom made punch that is buffed smooth.
wood burning, texture

Once the texture work is complete, I ebonized the form with Carbon Black India Ink. The next step was to mask out the parts that will later be gilded. I first used a 3M vinyl tape (from automotive paint store) because of it’s sharp edge, then cover the rest with blue masking tap. The exposed area was then painted with Golden Black Gesso, because of it’s tooth, to receive the gilding.
masking form

After the gesso was dry I use a gilders wax to add the sparkle to the project. Both silver and a little german silver, gilders wax, were used to get the effect I was after. The last steps was to give it a clear coat with Krylon UV resistant acrylic spray, then add the Ebony rim.
gilders wax

Interference Blue, Cherry Hollow Form

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I love to experiment with different textures and colors. For this project I started by drawing a 180 degree swirl pattern directly on the cherry hollow form. To create the texture I used a wood burner with a knife profile to burn random short line and followed the pattern drawn. When the texturing was completed the hollow form was ebonized using India Ink and allowed to sit for several days while thinking about the next step.

To create the faded blue to black effect I used Golden Heavy Body acrylic paints, Carbon Black and Cobalt Blue. I used a somewhat dry brush technique to fad from blue to black. The blue on top needed to be applied only on the top surface so the deeper black lines would show from the wood burning. Before the paints had a chance to throughly dry I used an Interference Blue powder, lightly brushed on, to add some shimming effect. The power has a tendency to clump so I buffed the powder with a shoe shine brush that feathered it in nicely. To complete the project it was coated with Krylon clear UV resistant gloss acrylic spray.
cherry hollow form, woodturning, textured

Pod Form

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This pod form is a art project I started after seeing the works of artist Graeme Priddle and Betty Scarpino. When I was designing this project I was thinking I could make a ramp to roll a marble down the center and that was my starting point. I thought it would be fun to mimic the shape of a water slide with it’s up and down movements so it would need a small bump in the middle. Originally I was planning on making this project to be display on a table but half way through decided it needed to be hung on a wall.

This pod form is turned from a piece of cherry wood then band sawed apart to created the general shape. I then work many hours, with hand tools, carving to sculpt the shape on the inside of the pod form. Once the interior was completed, I added texture to the outside and turned two cherry spheres to fit the project. The mounting base is made from oak that was torched and wire brushed to reveal the grain structure of the wood and finally ebonized with India Ink. The pod was painted with acrylic paints and the spheres were airbrushed with acrylic inks.

The top sphere is attached with a dowel while the larger sphere is left loose so it can be rolled down the ramp like my original thoughts intended. This was a fun project that will be displayed on the wall of my dinning room with pride.


sculpture, woodturning, pod formturned, carved

Embellished Cherry Hollow Form

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This embellished cherry hollow form was started as a test piece where everything went way better than expected. The wood is cherry and it has a knot in the the upper third of the form. The knot is very solid and has a minor crack in it. When hollowing I used a different technique from what I usually do, on small forms, so the mouth opening was wider than I wanted. After relief carving, It was evident that the design needed a rim so I turned one out of cherry.

The texture was done using a wood burner with a skew tip that worked very well. The cherry rim was ebonized using black leather dye and clear coated with a matt Krylon finish. The body of the form was painted with Golden acrylic paints and clear coated with Kryon acrylic paints.
embellished cherry hollow form, carved, cherry wood

Walnut Art Form

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Last fall I was rearranging my wood supply in my garage and found a nice piece of black walnut. My preference in wood is cherry and I use the shaving on my garden and would never put black walnut in it. I had just clean up my garage workshop so I decided to make something special with it – Walnut Art Form.

I started this project with a scrap of paper to sketch out an idea of what I wanted to do. After the basic design was completed I turned the walnut form plus a maple rim and stored everything into a 32oz yogurt container.

Early in January it was time to work on the project and started to map out where the carving would be. I chose to do random spirals and with a white white pencil I sketched out a design on the walnut form. After days of carving, filing and sanding the form was reading for texture. I used various size ball bits in my micro carver and later in the process decided to leave three sections without texture.

The base is made from a piece of walnut that my brother gave me 15 years ago, that he got from my uncle Bob who had stored it for 40 years. I carved the base so it would cradle the form and torched it for a little texture. The next thing I needed was a wood stone and that was carved from a piece of cherry then painted. The form and stone are attached with hot glue.

This was a fun project and a beautiful piece of black walnut that will sit on my shelf proudly.
Walnut Art Form, black walnut, carved, woodturning

Wall Art – Thunder

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This was a fun project to work on because I have never attempted this style of art before. I belong to a small focus group where we challenge each other to create something we have never attempted before. After going to SOFA Chicago 2017 and seeing the stunning wall art by a ceramic artist, Vicki Grant, I knew I wanted to attempt something similar. While talking with her, I found out she started with a found object and designed around that. My project uses some of her design styles but I tried to stay away from copying her directly.

Starting with the idea that I needed a found object, I remembered that we had a box of stones my parents had collected over many years. I selected a small piece of Amethyst for my design that my parents, along with an Aunt and Uncle, dug up in Thunder Bay Canada.

I started this project last fall when I cut a 2”x11”x11” slab out of a cherry log for the disk. After letting it season for awhile I turned the disk and let it dry some more. Once dry, I turned it to it’s final shape so I could start designing and carving on it. After the carving was completed I textured the background using a rotary tool, added some wood burning, then painted it with acrylic paints and gilding paste.

The backer board is made from a leftover oak panel that was laying around. The panel was torched, burning softer wood, to reveal a weathered texture. I applied black leather dye to the panel and coated it with a clear protective finish.

I named the project Thunder since it started with a piece of Amethyst from Thunder Bay. This project was fun because it forced me to work in a different direction from what I am used to. As an artist I am always trying to find different styles and medias to work with. As a retired photographer I appreciate the works of artist from many different fields. There is nothing better to hang on your wall or display on a shelf than a hand made item from a local artist whether it is a photograph, a wooden object or some other media.
Wall Art - Thunder, wall art, carving, woodturning, embellishments

Carved Woodturnings

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Woodturning and embellishments is how I exercise my creative mind and I enjoy the process. There are so many possibilities and so many great artist to watch and learn from. Sometimes I make a piece that is similar to an artist style and other times I use their work as a starting point. In either case this work comes from my hands and my interpretation. After years of working with my lathe I now enjoy the process of making carved woodturnings.
Woodturning and embellishments, carved cherry hollow form

I have been working on this project (above), on and off, for the past year and a half. I started this piece after John Jordan did a demo for our woodturning club. Soon after a neighbor took down a large cherry tree and I was able to turn this green and preserve some of the nice sapwood. After the wood dried I started carving on it, a little at a time. The finish is Watco Danish Oil buffed to a high sheen.

woodturning, carving

I started this project (above) after Trent Bosch did a program at Robust Tools open house this past fall. The wood is cherry and the facets were sanded into the wood. The piece was then painted with acrylic paints and sprayed with Krylon Clear Coating (1305).

woodturning, carved

A friend and I were challenging each other to take a shape from the internet and do something different with it (embellishments). The shape I found was done by Matthew Hill and he is a very good artist. I was going in for rotator cuff surgery and wanted a soft wood to work with when I was ready. The Body (above) is made from Basswood, rim maple and lid cherry. Basswood is easy to carve and a favorite of many carvers in the carving club I belong to. After carving the piece, I painted it with acrylic paint and a protective layer of Kryon Clear Coating (1305 & 1309).

After a long career in photography I now blend my passions together, creating artistic woodturnings and photograph them in a way they should be. If you need quality  photographs of your artwork please contact me. I do offer lessons on woodturning and  embellishments, please check out this webpage, http://www.clayton-arts.com/classes.html

Focus Stacking Product Shoot

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Recently I have retired from portrait photography but still take on a few jobs, if they interest me. The jobs I will do are photographic photo restoration and tabletop product photos. I spend most of my time pursuing my hobby of woodturning and and a new one of collecting woodwork planes and restoring them. In both cases I use my photography to document each items to it’s fullest potential using focus stacking.

When I am photographing tabletop item it is difficult to get the whole item in focus, front to back. You can not rely on depth of field to save you when photographing small items so a new technique is necessary and it is called focus stacking. Focus stacking is a slow process of taking several images with different focus setting (slices) so you have an image of each section in focus. These images are then taken into Photoshop and put together so you have a finial image where every part is in focus.

If you have a product you need in focus give me a call.
collecting woodwork planes, woodworking planes focus stacking, woodworking plane

Woodcarving Mallet

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After reading an article in the February 2017 American Woodturner, I decided to turn a woodcarving mallet. Over the past couple of years I have been learning about carving so I figured someday I might need one. This mallet is made out of quarter sawn Ash (striking surface) and the core out of Ash, Bubinga and Maple. It was a great exercise for spindle turning. 9 7/8″ long by 2 5/8″ wide.
woodcarving mallet, woodturning