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Kagamibuta (kind of) dogwood and grass


Dustin Clayton

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O.K.,

This is something I've been working on (last weekend). Hopefully its going to be a kagamibuta netsuke (Iwas inspired by all the really wonderfull ones that Ford posted). 35 mm mild steel disk engraved with prairie grass. The dogwood leaf and branch is a raised inlay of shibuichi (my own homemade stuff) and copper.

Theres still a lot of work yet to do. I plan on starting the rust patination on the steel tonight. Once I have that done I'll refine the leaf a bit with polishing stones and then hopefully try some roshuko(?) on the non ferrous metals. then on to working on the rim and the bowl.

This is my first try at raised metal inlay. ive done a very little bit of line inlay and flush as well. All in all I dont think its going so bad. This is all hammer and chisel work. No electric tools (except my lamp). In my original design the leaf was not so centered, I must have been in a bit of a hurry to start cutting when I did the layout :D . The grasses are something I like and think I will explore further. Growing up in Nebraska I've always had a love for the prairie and would like to express that a bit more in my metal work.

Any way all comments questions and critiques are welcome. There are some really talented people on this forum and I value your opinions on my work and how I could Improve.

Thanks,

Dustin

post-1589-1203393050.jpg

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Hi Dustin. Nicely done. A really good start. Somehow I missed seeing this earlier. :)

I very much like your treatment of the grasses which are a favorite of mine as well. Perhaps a few less parallel stalks with more crossing ones could add vitality and visual interest.

The inlay is very well done technically, but I would agree could be better placed.

Your engraving is nicely controlled and I would suggest even more variation in width, in the leaf veins for example.

The bevelled edge around the perimeter may look odd when you place it in the bowl.

 

Keep up the great work!

 

Jim

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Jim,

Thanks for your comments, I really appreciate the feedback. Yes I was really unhappy with how centered the leaf came out unfortunately I didnt notice it until I had the outline deeply chisled. I see what you mean about a bit more crossing in the grasses adding depth and interest. as for the bevel, I had a horrible time trying to braze a loop onto the back of this disk. So my plan was to make a bezel with a copper back , a silver rim, and a loop in copper brazed to the back of the bezel. Then I was going to set the disk when I was all finished with patination. I'm sure that is horribly un-traditional :) but it was the only way I could think to do it.

Thanks,

Dustin

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Hi Dustin,

 

I agree with what seems you already are aware of in compositional problems. I think you could still do some nice chasing on the leaf to give it more depth and texture. I'd keep this one as a practice piece and make another with the improved composition for your netsuke.

 

As to the soldering on of a loop - are you using a heavy enough flux - if you are using a gold/silver flux such as batterns, it is not going to work too well - go to a thick white brazing flux such as Airco makes - should work better.

 

I'm impressed with much of your skills and appreciate your sharing this.

 

Thanks,

Mangus

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Hi guys thanks for the comments,

 

Jim: hard silver solder is what I was using, I guess I used the word braze to differentiate between hard solder and easy flowing lead or soft solder. Thats probably a mistake on my part. The real problem was I had about fifteen minutes after work in which to attempt to attach the loop. Someday Ill get my torch set up at home :) .

 

Debbie: I agree.

 

Magnus: That sounds about right. I've already got plans for the upgrade. Unfortunately this photo doesnt show all the work I did moddelling the leaf. As far as the soldering goes, at work we use a relatively thick white paste flux (not sure of the brand) when I first started there I couldnt stand the stuff but now you couldnt pay me to go back to batterns. The problem was trying to do it in a hurry without proper cleaning and surface preparation.

 

Thanks

Dustin

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