Oh boy oh boy oh boy! We’ve been major energizer bunnies round here.
We’ve been building the carport, and removing stuff to the tip, and collecting plums, and chopping wood, and burning branches, and digging out a huge and ugly privet hedge for a deep perennial garden along a back fence, and we’ve been at it hammer and tongs till our legs are scrapped and bruised and we look like the walking dead.
All this work has left very little time for art, but I’m happy to report the beginning of a carving.
My friend William, (who lent me his father’s chisels), gave me a piece of maple to have a go. OK, so, maple must be the biggest joke wood in the world! It’s as hard as rock!!! In fact, I can’t imagine oak or mahogany being harder.
So, very quickly it became very apparent to me, that I wouldn’t be the owner of a lovely maple woodcarving of a wildflower meadow with a wren.
I’ve been thinking about carving a wooden spoon and asked Robbie how I might go about doing this. He looked at me and gave me his jig saw. LOL So I drew some designs on my maple and decided on the one I liked and set to it.
I cut out the wooden spoon with R’s jig saw, (R helped me cut the handle), and started carving it with the mallet and chisels.
This is how far I got after about four hours of carving time, plus you can see the scale of this spoon. It’s a big one!
So far so good. More work on the bowl, and, of course, I only have chisels instead of a draw knife for the handle and curved blade knife for the bowl, but I’m getting somewhere.
Where was I…oh yes…fun…
So R got a phone call from his optician to say his contacts were in, so we drove to pick them up, and R surprised me with a day out visit to one of our favourite towns, Wallingford.
This is a beautiful market town of old brick and flint houses and postage sized courtyards and tiny little streets…like this one, called Mousey Lane, where we could hardly walk beside each other.
We had a little lunch and tea and a good mooch around the antique emporium.
I fell in love with two handmade teddies, some old chisels and a beautiful painting of a very curvy nude, while R fell in love with a gas mask, (which he wants to wear instead of goggles to drive his new project Medusa). We bought the gas mask, a chisel, and the handmade teddies for Binky and Bunny to play with, but, unfortunately, the beautiful nude was pricey and painted on wood, so very difficult for me to ship back to Van.
Late afternoon, on the drive back home, R did a u-turn and we parked up at a little hill called Wittenham Clumps for a walk. It’s a special place which has inspired many people, from Victorian poets to contemporary artists. Here is a very interesting site about an artist who dedicated his art to the place.
Run by the Earth Trust as a wildflower meadow, this chalk hill has the oldest stand of beech trees in England.
We walked all the way around the clump…
And looked out over our Thames and over our beautiful South Oxfordshire.
Who says we don’t have any fun.