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La daga de oro de Princesa Dulcinea


Barry Lee Hands

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"La daga de oro de Princesa Dulcinea"

 

A dream in gold and pearl, This is a one of a kind tribute to the legendary object of Don Quixote's love, The Princess Dulcinea.

A 5" Loveless-style Boot Dirk with T-416 bolsters, Mother-of-pearl handles CPM 154-CM blade stock, and a T-416 SS bail, this piece is the second collaboration from Steve Johnson and Barry Lee Hands featuring Barry's new " Gilded Pearl " technique in 24k gold.

 

K05428-JohnsonSteve-HandsBarryLee__.jpg

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Handsome knives Barry.

 

That is a gorgeous piece!

 

If the gold is inlaid, how was that done without cracking the m-o-p? I'm assuming that using 24k gold helps with malleablity.

 

 

Freda, are you familiar with Shibayama work.. I don't know if Barry is using similar technique but M.O.P can be cut extremely precisely with acid.

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It is a very difficult technique, and yes it is done with 24k, to minimize the stress on the pearl

 

Hello Barry.. Do you mind telling us more about your attitude towards sharing technique.. I've noticed on other forums that you are equally as reluctant to discuss yours and find that, as a long time student of history of technique, rather fascinating.. relating in particular to how certain advanced techniques were handed down from one generation to other in the various fine crafts of Japan and in particular those of the shibayama and metalworking workshops. My own attitude is that knowledge of a particular tecnique need not be threatening if indeed it is a very difficult technique as its the quality of execution that really counts, but your insights into to this issue would be very much appreciated.

 

Kindest Regards

Clive

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Hello Barry.. Do you mind telling us more about your attitude towards sharing technique.. I've noticed on other forums that you are equally as reluctant to discuss yours and find that, as a long time student of history of technique, rather fascinating.. relating in particular to how certain advanced techniques were handed down from one generation to other in the various fine crafts of Japan and in particular those of the shibayama and metalworking workshops. My own attitude is that knowledge of a particular tecnique need not be threatening if indeed it is a very difficult technique as its the quality of execution that really counts, but your insights into to this issue would be very much appreciated.

 

Kindest Regards

Clive

Yes, Clive, I am happy to discuss this subject, which is generally neglected.

In engraving today in the United States, in my opinion if you counted all the dollars in the engraving market, you would find that 1 out of four are being spent on learning to engrave and 2 out of four are being spent on tools, and very little is being spent on people actually commissioning work.

The recent boom in the "sharing" of knowledge in many respects is enabled by the Corporate tool vendors and their employees, "sharing" this information with the entry level hobby and semi pro engravers, encouraging them to buy tools and take classes.

There is nothing wrong with this, it is legitimate business practice and puts money in the coffers of the corporations,the shareholders, and the pockets of the employees, which is, after all, what a corporation is supposed to do.

Often it carrys an almost religious fervor.

Perhaps I can claim some experience with this as in the past I have worked for all the major Corporate manufacturers of engraving equipment, as consultant, a product trade show rep or as an instructor.

I have always engraved professionally since I was hired as a teenager back in the 1970's at a commercial engraving house," Gist Engravers".

Gary Gist kept a lot of secrets. I visited him recently and he gave me a full tour of his facility explaining many of his proprietary techniques.

I am sure part of the reason he shared this with me is he knows I won't go posting it all on the internet, and we respect each other.

Anything you give away, is devalued in the eyes of the world, that is just the nature of the human mind and the marketplace.

The method of teaching you describe as "certain advanced techniques were handed down from one generation to other" show that these ancient masters understood this concept quite well.

In the past I have offered many tutorials to the public on the common techniques quite freely. I found I spent a lot of unpaid time trying to explain these techniques, and reply to questions, and after I quit teaching for the tool corporations, I found there is very little business rationale for continuing to spend my limited time answering questions.

The techniques I use today, although influenced by my exposure to techniques I have observed in the USA, Italy, Japan, Thailand, Indonesia and London, are techniques that I developed myself through great personal effort over a period of decades.

I have never seen anyone, anywhere use them.

In keeping with my proffesional approach to my Art, I offer classes to anyone, who wishes to value my knowledge according to the laws of the marketplace, and attend classes at my studio.

My students have the full benefit of all my knowledge and technique.

I have noticed my students don't go post my technique either.

For me this is the most professional way to manage my limited time, make a modest income, and do what I love, which is the work itself.

I hope this gives you some insight into my way of doing things.

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Many thanks Barry for your comprehensive and reasoned reply, I agree your sentiments wholeheartedly but sometimes find it difficult to balance the many conflicting impulses.. your insight will I'm sure be extremely helpful to my making a more professional and intelligent response to such issues.

 

Its ironic that while the Internet and the corporate crafts "boom" has offered many far greater access to tecnical knowledge, it has also led many to devalue what they don't have to work very hard for. I often find myself irritated by some of the enquiries received via forums such as this one.. especially when you just know that enquirer couldn't even be bothered to use the sites search facility to see if the subject has been cover before... or then the questions are so basic that one feels that if they can't figure it out themselves then there's actually very little point in offering any help. Its not just that one feels them lazy or expecting something for nothing but because you know more importantly from years of your own learning that it is the actual process of acquiring those basics through ones own diligence and congitive application that forms the nessessary foundation on which all more advanced tecnique is built.

 

I read recently a post on this very forum.. which casually remarked something along the lines off.. "Hey real cool.. I think I'll try that when I've finished my birdbox." Unremarkable if the statement simply refered to some handy tip on something like a novel way to clean a paint brush but quite depressing when applied to a subject like the Japanese metalworking tradition.. :)

 

Again many thanks for your reply Barry.

 

All the very best

 

Clive

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An interesting exchange, and I'd picked up previously that Barry didn't want to share the technique here. I didn't reply because I wished I'd kept my big mouth shut in the first place.

 

However, it's led to this discussion, which, I think, is useful. I've had no objection, in other art forms, to sharing techniques I'd devised, but I'd only do so if the enquirer was serious about their own work. Copying or sharing a technique with those who are serious doesn't necessarily mean that your own use of it will result in a deflation of your own work; collectors often go for developments in style/form/design/technique from names that they get to know. It's also, retrospectively, how particular schools come to be recognised. In general, though, I'd say sharing is fine with people who are willing to put in time and dedication to their craft and already have a body of work that proves their seriousness; otherwise, not.

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You can tell someone how to ride a bicycle, even provide them with the bike but in the end they still need to figure out the important part for themselves. Barry may not share all his secrets but has and continues to freely provide much information to beginning and experienced engravers on these forums. Not to mention the inspiration his work provides. Check the archives. And if you want more he offers classes without trying to shove them down your throat. Very professional. Being he's a fellow Montanan I go out of my way not to bug him.

 

I'm still overwhelmed by the amount information that is available.

 

Thank You Barry,

 

John

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