I have worked with metal almost all my life. I was making HVAC parts in a sheet metal shop when I was big enough (probably about ten to twelve year old) to reach the handle on the bench folder and heavy enough to work the four foot shear and eight foot brake. When your dad owns several sheet metal shops, you catch the bug early for making things from metal.
I had a complete sheet metal shop myself at age 39 when I owned a roofing company. I loved doing the copper flashing and ornamental copper work. I had all the tools and skills.
Recently I expanded into a metalsmithing interest that include carving and in particular creating wax masters for metal casting. This blog shows some evidence of this with castings in resin, pewter and recently in lost wax sterling silver.
I have explored both computer machined wax carving and am pleased with my results in hand carving. My preference is hand tooled wax work as long as I am able.
I developed skill with the computer assisted carving because I know some day my neuropathy will limit my manual abilities. My Peripheral Neuropathy is already affecting my hands and fingers and especially my legs and feet.
Alongside metal work and metalsmithing, woodworking is also one of my creative passions. Wood type crafts became a core obsession when at a very early age my maternal grandfather planted the seed. His entire life was dedicated to woodworking and he had a full shop in his home. My brother and I spent a lot of our early development years in that shop.
In the last decade or so I have taken a serious interest in adding wood carving, both by hand and CNC machine to my skills. An example is the carved leaf at the top of the page. I have amassed a large collection of magazines and books on the subject of woodworking and carving. The home library confirms I have been practicing and studying this craft all my life.
Wood or metal work, I am proof of what early exposure does to a young mind. I have constructed many nice furniture projects from wood and perhaps even works of art but it’s just as an avocation, I never made woodworking a full time vocation as my grandfather did. Sheet metal was a profession for awhile, as until age forty, I worked in the family HVAC business.
I am not a tinkerer, or a person lacking of skill. I become proficient at what I enjoy and continue to work to master my craft.
My slowly (three decades) deteriorating nervous system (Peripheral Neuropathy) has me concerned but has not stopped me. I have to work harder and sometimes slower, but I press on.
I hope I encourage the young and old to pursue all their interest in art. There is a lifetime in which to do it, but it starts today.
Art is not about perfection as absolute perfection doesn't exist, it’s an unreachable but worthy goal. I have a motto that states, “One perfect part at a time” It’s a goal, but at some point I decide it is as perfect as I can make it and I put it down and start on the next part.
My other (fraternal) grandfather was a talented and in-demand oil and watercolor artist who received as much pleasure displaying and selling his work in art shows as he experienced in creating it. What he loved most was to talk to his customers. But a secret he shared with me was that he never considered his work “perfect”. He knew where the mistakes were and would explain them to me. But the world (his world) still loved what he produced. The critical eye of the creator is far stricter than the loving eyes of the beholder.
Artistic talent is a family legacy. Many in our clan have the artistic knack, not necessarily by inheritance, but by exposure. I wish to enjoy and share my imperfect art as my grandfathers did, in my remaining time…
So starting here in Dimensional Art Studio, I highlight my God given talents and display and talk about the creative artistic side of my nature. Most of the things I display will be for show and occasionally a few may be for sale. I’ll let you know…