LumberJocks Woodworking Forum banner
  • Please post in our Community Feedback thread for help with the new forum software! If you are having trouble logging in, please Contact Us for assistance.

Project Information

This was a fun project. We can call it "Predators stalking Prey." I have had this concept brewing in my head for a while now, more sculptural than functional, I would say, but still a Box. The "holey" coralish technique in the sea fan I have been refining in some earlier projects, closer to where I want to get with it here, yet still not quite there, I want it to be much more "delicate."

The base and sea fan are ebonized oak. And while it was my original intention to make the base black so as to highlight the mollusk and fish, as the project was progressing there was some really cool grain patterns in various areas. So I was undecided for a spell. But there were also some grain "issues" that led me to decide to go ahead and make the base and fan black.

The carving/shaping was done with my entire arsenal, ya might say; and quite alot of chiseling, which is uncommon for me.

The shell is fixed on two dowels to keep it slightly above the base. The fish are adjustable to a degree; so if and when I sell this piece, the proud owner can have some fun with it.

The mollusk is made of quatersawn sycamore, with the tongue/pull being sapele.
The box is roughly 12cm X 8cm.
The prey are iroko.
The predators are Brazilian rosewood.

Base and sea fan are finished with shellac to lock in the ebonizing.
The mollusk and fish are just oiled and waxed.

A huge shoutout goes to Dick Byrd, aka Recycle1943, for supplying the sycamore; as he and I have done a wood trade recently. And when I first opened the package he sent and saw this sycamore, I nearly, nearly, well, you can imagine….......

There was enough hand-sanding on this project to make a grown Splintergroup! howl in terror:]]

Having never worked with sycamore before, i made the mistake of trying to get the wood super smooth with 0000 steelwool, as I normally do with almost everything. Unfortunately, some of the wool dust got buried in the wood and I just couldnt get it out by sanding. So there´s some "contamination," but I pretend I meant to do it like that so I feel better. Lol.

For anyone who thinks the fish would be better represented with fins, please remember, I am an impressionist, not a realist.

If anyone is interested in ebonizing, I suggest using this india ink, it is the best on the market, IMO.



Thanks for viewing.

Have a great day!

Gallery

Comments

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,197 Posts
Brian,

Thanks for starting my week off with this wonderful, whimsical piece!

Inspiration! (and I love the little fish! They have appeared in a number of my projects through the years).

Mike
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
7,387 Posts
This is a real example of bringing thoughts out for the eye to enjoy. There are so many features to see and every time I look I see something new. The fan is an absolute accomplishment in that I can see where one little mishap could destroy the image.
Fins ? I never noticed they weren't there til you brought it up. I apologize for not warning you about the Sycamore and it's forever fuzz, my only solution is 4 to 6 coats of finish with 320 and 400 grit in between. Thanks for the tip on the india ink, I've often wanted to have black in some of my items but ebony is way to much $$$
I'd like to say you hit a home run on this but it's more like a grand slam and stunning comes to mind as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,566 Posts
Thanks Mike. I checked out your project page, again, looking for those fish????? Little fish, little fish, oh, where art thou, little fish?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,566 Posts
Thank you, kindly, Dick. And yes, if by mishap, you mean being a klutz, there is some flex middlewise and it could easily snap in half. Its sorta challenging(not the right descriptor word) to do all those holes and grinding and sanding in a systematic fashion and yet have the whole appear completely random.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,061 Posts
Well! That sure is something, Brian! Quite a piece of work!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
269 Posts
Great piece! I don't know if you plan your projects, but it looks very free and organic like the ideas just came to you as inspiration as you built. No matter what your process, Its really great and a joy to view.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,529 Posts
This is a beautiful piece of art yet very functional in design to be used everyday. Love the fish exploring the bottom.
Well done Brian.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,077 Posts
Very COOL Brian!
I really like the freeform organic feel to it. It is sculptural and kudos for using chisels.
Its great that you are using a blended process of handtools and powertools. So many great features and I love that it is artistically creative and whimiscal. The schools of predators and prey contrast nicely with ebonized oak.
Great Piece!
Jon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,870 Posts
Pure art Brian - nice work!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,562 Posts
Now you're doing organic sculpture! Steve is right, pure art.

Excellent details, though it looks really delicate (I tend to break things like that 8^(

I hope any cats are locked outside!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,586 Posts
Wonderful piece Brian. You've made my morning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,566 Posts
Many thanks to:

Dave P
Bill Huffman- I do both usually, plan and freeflow.
Dave DD
Jon, Mr.Wolfe
Steve, Sras
Splinty- yeah man, the cats are outside dwellers.
Andy, Brit
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
22,906 Posts
That's fantastic Brian!! I always like the organic element you bring to the woods and the methods you use but this is a whole new thing :) Truly artistic my friend. This is something I doubt I could execute but that doesn't matter because I could never conceive it! You have done both brilliantly. The wood selections and finishes are excellent.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
360 Posts
Outstanding work!
There isn't too much more I can say about this project. You came up with a great idea and your workmanship is outstanding.
Roger
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,566 Posts
Thank you very much, Roger! I checked out your project page, and I have to say YOUR work is outstanding!!! That yellowheart/walnut hexagon box, wow, that is awesome.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
382 Posts
Wow…Brian!

This piece is fantastic. I absolutely love the idea, the execution and use of material/finishing. I think I need to experiment with the ebonizing now, thanks to your inspiring piece.

I particularly like the strong textural and color differences.
My hat is off to you… maestro. Well done.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,566 Posts
Thank you, Rick! I had a suspicion you might get a kick out of this one.

I dont know about the "maestro" bit. I could turn that around and toss it back at you :]]
 
Top