Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

I've made a little more progress on the Trappist Monk stone sculpture entitled "One Thousand Years".

This is the view from the other side. I've roughed in the cord ends of the rope belt. There's plenty more work to be done before it is finished. Originally, I wanted to do a rough and quick 'sketchy' version of a monk, but I kept working on the piece, making improvements. I've invested a LOT more time in this piece than I intended.

I took some time off from the Monk project and made this Tennessee Pink Marble fountain bubbler.

We went to 2 art openings in the last 2 weeks. Mike Ratterman has a great show up at Bellarmine (we forgot the camera). This picture is from the Pyro Gallery opening that featured sculptures by Al Nelson and Bob Lockhart.

City lights with full moon. Meg snapped this shot on the way to Al and Bob's opening. (photo copyright Meg White).

Meg and I went to Tom and Claire Burkhart's 20th Anniversary party out at their farm near Charlestown. They had this bluegrass band, and a bunch of great food (and beer, of course).

We had another opportunity to hunt Jr.'s secret arrowhead patch. This time, we were accompanyed by Meg and Jr.'s wife, Connie. "find anything?"
"Me neither".

We went to McMillen's Halloween party. Meg has a lot more pictures from that event on her blog. (The link is in the right top corner). We also had a visit from David Schwartz and his nephew and niece at our studio on his 86th birthday. Happy birthday David!

Meg snapped this shot of a bug checking itself out in a mirror. (great antennas!)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Trappist Monk Stone Sculpture

As a result of my recent visit to Gethsemane, I was inspired to make a stone monk. I was impressed when Brother Quenon pointed out that the Trappist had maintained their Order and way of life for almost 1,000 years. In fact, the title of this new sculpture is "1,000 years".

I had made a small clay study to fit into a 4,000 lb. 7' x 3' x 2' piece of rustic Indiana Limestone (the piece with the saw on it).

I had carved off about 500 lbs. of stone from the block while it was still out in the stone yard. Then, I moved it to the shade of the new stone studio.

After cutting the bottom flat, I stood the block upright.

I wanted the piece to have more 'life' than the crude original model. So, I made another model to capitalize on the full potential of the rough block.

I decided to make a face on the sculpture, rather than the hollow hoods of the first 2 models. I made a small clay head study, to help me see the basic shapes that I wanted.

I used carbide-tipped chisels to rough in the basic planes of the face, and I roughed in the beard with a forked chisel.

This is the current progress on the sculpture.

Last Sunday (10-10-10), there was a small gathering at the Meadeville Cemetery. In the 1800's, Meadville was a major stop on the stagecoach route between Louisville and Owensboro. There's not a trace of the old town left, now (except the cemetery).

Several people, including myself, were asked to describe to the group our experience in restoring the old cemetery. Bud Roberts had enlisted my help in the mid 90's to help with the initial clearing of trees and brush. When I first got involved, all the stones were laid flat, and many were broken . With the help of my retired chemist friend, Dave Shimp, we epoxied and stood up a lot of the stones. Other people got involved in the project after us, maintaining the old cemetery and making further improvements.

My neighbor, Jr. Horsley, invited me up to his secret 'arrowhead patch' last Thursday. I hadn't been hunting in years, and it was a blast.

It's located on a remote and scenic hilltop. It's certainly not someplace where you would expect to find an indian site.

I didn't find anything. But, Jr. found a snapped base with nice oblique flaking (either a Kirk or an Elk River) and the archaic side notch (Big Sandy).

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Hemlock Cliffs

This last week, we went to Hemlock Cliffs. You can find it by following the signs from hwy 237 a few miles south of English, Indiana.

There's a 1.2 mile loop path that leads down and back out of wooded ravines.

The eroded sandstone cliffs make a lot of fantastic shapes.

Lots of places to explore.

The 'honey combing' of the ledges are pretty strange.

There are 2 large rock shelters in the park. (If you can find me in this picture, it helps to get a sense of the scale).

There are "Hominy holes" in some of the boulders under one of the shelters. There's a real nice, big one, right beside me, in the rock that I'm sitting on.

There are countless little overhangs in the park, but the one rock shelter is huge. (room for the whole tribe). (again, I'm in the picture, for scale).

Some of the resident wildlife.

Blair witch? (all photos on this post by Meg White).

A Return To Stone

It'd been weeks since I'd last carved stone. I'd been busy with mold making etc., and it was great to get back into the studio.

Meg and I have been watching the Avengers episodes that had Diana Rigg as Mrs. Emma Peel. She wears a large 'mod' belt buckle in several episodes.

When I went into the studio at the start of last week, I wasn't thinking, "I'm going to make a sculpture of Mrs. Peel". But, it sort of came out that way.

The piece of stone that I chose to carve had dictated the final proportions - long and thin.

I left a natural surface on the top of the piece to give it a fragmented look. It has a forward implied motion, to give it an air of 'action'. I'm very happy with the piece - it was too much fun.

Morning! Meg takes a picture of the sun rise, through her toes.

...and speaking of waking up, this Screech Owl woke from his daytime slumber just long enough to see what we were up to. (photo Meg White)

A hyper-dimensional tear in the fabric of our universe disturbs the infinite, featureless night, and all the galaxies and stars are spewed into being at the moment of Creation.'s a picture of a crack between our barns siding, lighting up donkey dust. Pick your reality. (photo Meg White)

What we perceive as more donkey dust, the digital camera obviously sees as something else. Does the camera strip away the veil of reality, and give us a "glimpse behind the curtain"? ...whatever... (photo Meg White)