Art Nouveau style sculpture memorial

25 April, 2016 – 2:35 pm

I have been working on this sculpture memorial now since February and have spent about 250 hrs carving, refining and developing the details.

Obviously the closer I get to the finish the smaller the changes are. I still have the back where her hair and dress meet to carve also both hands still need work but these I develop gradually as it goes without saying if I take too much away I can’t put it back.

I am sanding some of the details but because the stone has small fossils in it will not have the same finish as marble.

I will be drawing out the inscription in a few different layouts to make sure that it is absolutely right. I anticipate that there is another 50hrs work on this carving.

 

Share

Visit to Sudeley Castle

31 March, 2016 – 8:00 pm

What better way to spend my day off than a visit to a magnificent historic building. The Sun was shining and it was so lovely and warm that Sudeley Castle and landscaped gardens seemed the perfect choice. I hadn’t been here before but the photos on their website intrigued me. The castle has a rich history and has a beautiful church in it’s grounds. A lot of the original property was destroyed in the civil war but there are some ruins and full buildings both old and Victorian additions to explore.

I was able to make some very rough sketches, while there are mistakes in my drawings every time I make a sketch I am understanding more, it’s about training my mind and my eyes to draw what I can see. Drawing also helps me to understand form and perspective helping me in my carvings.

Share

Highgate Memorial Sculpture

30 March, 2016 – 8:17 pm

I have been busy carving this Portland limestone memorial sculpture for Highgate Cemetery. Here are some more photos of the development.

As I have been carving this I have had a live model to take some dimensions from, she has what I imagine an Art Nouveau frame to be which helps me to work out how to develop the body.

It is important when working on a figure to check proportion from where it will be viewed, so in the 3rd picture I stood on a stool at what will be the natural ground level. This is something that I have done at regular intervals to keep an eye on my progress.

As you can see I am getting closer to finishing this sculpture and so the amount of stone that I remove gets less. and the detail gets tighter.

 

 

 

 

 

Share

Memorial sculpture for Highgate Cemetery

20 March, 2016 – 2:01 pm

It is always an honour to be given the responsibility of carving a memorial to help remember a loved one.

This commission is giving me the opportunity to use all of my training as a stonemason, artist, sculptor and letter cutter.

I was asked to design a sculpture memorial incorporating an Art Nouveau style woman. Due to restrictions the stone could be no wider than 14inches.

I decided to use Portland limestone it is excellent for letter cutting and detailed carving. It will show off the curves and form of the dress. Importantly it is a hard durable stone.

Here are the photos showing the design and the starting process.

 

Share

Final installment of our trip to Breckenridge.

4 March, 2016 – 7:21 pm

Well here are the final photos. As you can see despite the altitude and climate we were able to complete our dragons.

We had to have a shade put up as the glorious sun was melting our carving and detail was being lost. On Wednesday Ed carved the ice we had made from some of our melted snow into teeth, they looked amazing when we attached them late on Friday night but by 10am on Sat they had melted slightly so weren’t as effective.

On Friday I worked primarily in the shade as I was carving the belly and under the neck. It was so cold, I felt like a child again when we used to play in the snow. After a while though I realised just how cold I had become. Thankfully there were hand dryers in the rest rooms, these helped me thaw out a little so I could continue. I think you can get an idea of this from the photo of me sitting up just how cold I had become. Eventually however I had to find a job in the sunshine my poor frozen butt couldn’t take it any more! I moved into the sunshine to work on re-shaping the second dragon’s head and neck.

We worked until 11pm on the Friday night but we became too tired to carry on and didn’t want to make anymore mistakes so we decided to get back to it on Saturday morning. There wasn’t a lot more we could do and we finished in plenty of time. Sadly the German’s sculpture collapsed due to melt and I am really sorry but I didn’t get time to take photos of the other sculptures. These can be seen http://www.gobreck.com

Unfortunately I developed acute bronchitis and ear infections and so our day off on Sunday I spent in bed. I was naturally very disappointed as my partner and team mate Ed Francis and I were going to explore and take photos and generally enjoy some free time. It also meant that I missed out on the farewell dinner and the lit up sculptures. The level of skill was incredible and if I were ever to do it again I think I would want to spend a bit more time acclimatising before getting stuck into what can only be described as the hardest thing that I have ever undertaken.

Thank you to everyone for following and your continued support, I really hope that I did you proud.

 

Share