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I am envigilating this afternoon at the Bath Society of Artist members exhibition. I am showing “Road 2″ a small sculpture in Irish Blue Limestone. If your in Bath call in and see. There are 56 paintings, prints and sculptures. Lots of great work. It is at BRLSI in Queens Square, until 18th October, from 10 to 4, Monday to Saturday.
I became bored of counting every letter and every hour. I seemed to suck some of the joy out of it. So this week I have tried to cultivate a more relaxed attitude. If you are interested I have carved about 70%. More or less on target. I took a few pictures as the autumn sunshine reached into the workshop and spilled over the stone.
The images relate beautifully to the T S Eliot quote around the outer edge. Text, image, light and letters finding a poetic synergy.
I was really pleased to have found this quote, as it seems to vividly capture the experience of the Cotswold landscape.
Now the light falls
Across the open field, leaving the deep lane
Shuttered with branches, dark in the afternoon
T S Eliot. “East Coker”, from the “Four Quartets”
187 letters. Nearly half way. Within acceptable limits!
There are 409 letters to carve. The seven letters of T S Eliot are half sized making them a lot quicker to cut. 402 two inch letters. My target is to carve the inscription in four weeks. More or less 100 letters per week. 20 letters a day. It should be easy, but they just wont go any faster than 4 in an hour. Sometimes only 3 in an hour. 7 every 2 hours. 21 in 6 hours which is a typical daily hit rate, because there is always other stuff that needs doing when your running a business. 6 uninterrupted, whole focused hours is pretty good going in a day. Today I saw a new client and I carved 9 letters and I fixed the alternator belt on the car. So this week I am 11 letters behind already and I have a couple of school run days when I will be lucky to carve 18 letters, that leaves 2 days when I need to carve 22 letters plus another 5 to catch up the 11, so I make that 18 + 18 + 27 + 27 and I am still a letter down!
How did I do last week? 91. visually nearly a quarter. Not too bad. Plus an eighth short of a couple of concentric circles. I was getting up to speed and lots of things subverted my time. so I think there is still some better performance to find. I will still need to find those 9 letters though…
Tomorrow is another day. everything might flow and I might carve 20 letters in 5 hours. Now I must go to bed and when I close my eyes I will see letters!
This gallery contains 1 photo.
Last week was all about setting out the lettering on the stone. I fixed the stone onto a giant easel I made that allows me to raise it up and spin it round as I progress.
I had saved my drawing for the first Marker Stone from 2 years ago, so I was able to trace out the letters on to layout paper directly from the original drawing. Most of the text is the same as the Bath Marker Stone but I had to set out the T S Eliot quote from scratch, it being a new framing text around the edge.
I set out radial ledger lines using a large homemade compass, and divided the stone into 8 segments, establishing a framework to transfer the lettering into.
These drawings are not finessed. They carry just enough information to transfer the forms and the spacing.
The letters are then drawn in by hand with white pencil crayon. Adjustments to spacing and form are made where necessary, serifs added and drawing more fully resolved.
The chisel though is the final arbiter. This week I will begin to carve….