Local clay

I’ve finished using the Tay River clay and have the torn hands to prove it – it was very gritty.

This piece was made on the beach, the surface is ash used to stop the clay adhering to the rocks; it has been sawdust fired.

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I’ve collected more clay from Crail and half of it is processed ready to use once it has dried a bit.

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This is the sawdust fired Tay clay piece that is in my mid year review show

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This is where the Tay River clay was collected from.

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Mary of Guise

More Big News. I’ve met up with Anne Tynte Irvine and spent some time with her pear tree from the pear walk established by Mary of Guise in St Andrews. I did some bark rubbings and gathered a few twigs. I have an invite to go back and sound record in her beautiful garden and see the tree at different seasons. It still bears fruit – which seems extraordinary.

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Pear tree dating back to the time of Mary Queen of Scots’ mother

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bark rubbing of the pear tree

 

Damascus plans

Not to be left out on the Big News front, I have met with Pete from the Ratho Forge and set up a date to work further on my Damascus steel. Beat some more swords into ploughshares – well knife-metal into spoons. He has an amazing range of power hammers, an oil-fired forge and twenty-six years of experience, so that is pretty exciting.

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Damascus teaspoon etched, but not yet sanded back

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A different spoon etched and sanded back.

 

A couple of pretty pics

The witch hazel in my garden in January snow

Casting from 3D print

Big News, I’ve been given a silver bullion award (thank-you to Goldsmiths and Sandra Wilson) and am busy preparing designs for a domestic piece cast in silver. I’m very excited. I cast some silver rings in the States, but this will be a big challenge. I hope to make a piece that will fit with my Damascus and beach-sand casts. The Maker Lab is helping me 3d model a bowl-this is the set up to capture the shape.

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I hope to trial the piece in bronze and beach sand on Tuesday.

 

The six part silicon mould for the sound piece is complete. Just need to find the time to cast into it.

 

Damascus long spoon

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I have made a long spoon from one of the damascus steel twists (and have bought some photographic equipment so that I can get some better pics)

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The spoon is shaped with an angle grinder and then filed and sanded smooth on the parts where I want to reveal the pattern. The steel is then etched to reveal the patterning, then the raised parts gently sanded to leave the contrast of the two metals.

I think it is my second favourite piece to date

Zoe Arnold – Mary of Guise

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I’ve just done a workshop with Zoe Arnold, making a brooch with a biographical theme. The brooch is not quite finished, but a couple of days should do it. The theme is Mary of Guise. Mary landed just north of Crail when she came to St Andrews to meet her husband James V. The stone in this piece is from the beach near where she landed. Mary of Guise was regent for her daughter, Mary Queen of Scots. It’s claimed that Mary had refused to marry Henry VIII, claiming her neck was far too small.