Jeremiah was a Naxi!
Is a good friend of mind
He hardly understands a single word I say
and even with an interpreter the words of "Joy to the World" got totally lost in translation.
Nevertheless, during the short period of time I got to work with Jeremiah, an extremely clever and friendly Naxi local, I felt moved to sing that song. Like...alot. Probably because I speak about forty words of Mandarin Chinese, and even less in Naxi, and he speaks about forty words of English, so we needed something to fill the silences. (By zounds that was a run-on sentence.) So, although the language barrier kept my bullfrog jokes from making any sense to Jeremiah, (although, now that I think about it, most
people respond to my jokes with blank stares) when trying to come up with something to send him for his birthday, which incidentally falls on Christmas, my mind ran to frogs and ponds. But since a plain old bullfrog figurine wouldn't be hugely significant to him, for the aforementioned reasons, I wanted to make a more practical gift. He works at a bakery, so I figured a cookie jar might work.
Anyway I really
need to work on my turning.
Lathing a wand is easy, but I never get to work on hollowing, and I nearly broke my wrist three or four times having my hollowing chisel torqued out of my hand at 1000rpms. Not to mention the one time I actually did
knock the piece free of the lathe and sent it flying across the workshop at fifty miles an hour. (It weighed a good six or seven pounds at that point, and it was only my good luck that it didn't hit me en route!) All that to say I think that turnings might become more frequent, just so I can get some practice. Also, it would make me feel like I'm living in olden times if I could actually introduce myself as Michael the Turner.
As for the bas-relief carvings-eh. The images aren't too shabby, but I need to finesse them a bit, and I especially need to work on avoiding rough backgrounds, because some of those dents and dings were too deep even to chisel out. Believe me, I tried.
Still! An acceptable first try at solo interior turning; I didn't shatter it, and I did get to use lacquer for once, and make it shiny. The lid is fun, and I like how the frog/handle came out. I'll take it, and hopefully I'll improve as I go along.
Want to see more of this piece? Offsite, I have a large and fairly in depth work in progress gallery
going all the way from raw lumber to finished product, as well as an expanded gallery
of the finished piece, including some close up shots of the relief carvings. I'd love you to check them out! Estimated work time: 45 hours over four days