‘Shop Class’ at home

Okay, chair #2 is finished and resting comfortably at home. The finish was a little more complicated than I’d planned, but turned out just about right. First, a coat of grey stain, which was too close a match for the fabric, so I sanded a lot of it off. Next, a coat of aqua stain, which was too fussy looking, so I sanded most of that off and covered it with a sparing coat of the grey, again. Final coat, wipe-on poly. Overall, it looks good, is a surprisingly comfortable seat and I learned a lot. I’m glad I chose to do two very different kinds of chair (this one, ‘Shop Class,’ and ‘La Piña’) and am already thinking about trying one of them again in the spring; I still have plenty to learn and plenty to express and the second try should go a lot quicker.

La Pina!

It’s done! Huzzah!

Imperfect, but beautiful–and it sits nice! I’ve learned a lot during the process of designing and building this and I’m already planning another special chair for next semester using what I’ve learned…

I’m pleased with the finish I devised for the ‘leaves’ of the chair: I made a very dilute yellowy-green solution of milk paint, sparingly applied one layer and then applied one layer of wipe-on poly, which darkened it slightly. The seat and legs are finished with Watco Danish finish, which I use a lot because you can still feel the wood after it’s applied. The seat back is cypress and the seat and legs are hickory.

Workspace

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This is my current work space, at least some of it. I do a lot of work at the kitchen table, the sketching, the carving, the laying out, etc, but the inking and printing I do on these mobile carts. The inking cart is a rolling delight I designed and built in my woodworking course and my little press is currently resting on a metal tool cart I got a few years ago and have since dedicated to printmaking. The shelving on the right is half storage and half art supplies; I often use the top shelves for drying prints.  I can roll the carts into the kitchen when I start getting sloppy and when I’m done, I can roll them back into a corner of our small living room (which is actually devoted to storage and studio space). The setup is imperfect, but it works.

==>I really enjoy looking at other peoples’ workspace–I happened across the site Hyperallergic and their occasional entry “A View From the Easel.”  It’s helpful to see how other people find ways to be be successful in seemingly less-than-ideal spaces.

 

welcome home!

'House' end grain cutting board

This cutting board was an assignment this summer term in my woodworking course at a local crafts school. (Our assignment was to make an ‘edge grain’ cutting board and, thinking about how cherry wood darkens with exposure to light, I devised this homey little design.)  I am closing down my other website in the next week and will be widening the focus of Hapless Press to include more of my woodworking and posts about my other interests; in the next several weeks, look for new pages about public art and cultural events. School will start up again in about a month and I will be posting about my ongoing efforts to learn furniture-making. Aloha, and have a good summer!

poppy t!

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Here’s my response to the lovely poppies crowding my tomato plant–a t-shirt! I did a quick stencil screen print and hope it’s dry enough to wear to my woodworking class tomorrow. (The shirt is from the thrift and I made the stencil from some old cut-price Contact paper. Worked okay.)

given a choice…

Taller LenaterosWhere I am here and now is pretty nice, but: I’d love to be slopping it up in a bunch of ink (or pulp!) in a cooperative art space with a bunch of like-minded associates in the service of art for all! This above is a picture of Taller Leñateros in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas México (2009), a wonderful print and paper-making cooperative workshop.

ride on!

Taller Lenateros 2009

This picture was taken at Taller Leñateros in San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas México in 2009 (I think). (their website: http://www.tallerlenateros.com/) This funky contraption is used to break down pulp to make paper. This image tells a story of ingenuity and invention in the service of printmaking/papermaking. It also hints at the kind of community and ethos  Taller Leñateros enjoys and promotes; resourcefulness, creativity, humor and cooperation. If you’re ever in the wonderful city of San Cristóbal, visit!