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Design Help Wanted


David G

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Inspired by the amazing hard rock carvings of michael B I have commenced my first work on a piece of chalcedony, I have got it to the hand sanding stage (lots still to do).

 

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The question I have is whether to modify the design. My intent was to explore the technical side of stone carving with a relatively straightforward piece (I have been a lapidarist for a while but never believed I could carve). Originally I was going to do a symmetrical piece with a cut out in the centre, however as I cut the holes out while the outside shape was still a bulky preform the lines seemed to suggest an overlap of one side flowing past the other and I envisioned it as the design on the right as this seemed to make sense to me as the visual weight I took out of the left side that tucks under was offset by the increased bulk of the material that overlaps.

 

Now I am sanding I am not so sure, as the design on the left has more flowing lines and can be achieved from the current preform.

 

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What do you think? And what design elements do you bring into your decision? Thanks for sharing.

 

David

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Hi David,

 

My first response is to leave the broader ending in place. It looks as though the terminus is just a bit wider as the eye travels towards the top, The change from wider to narrower to bulky (at the top) tends to balance out the more bulky top where the cord hole has been made. This relates the top and bottom, and balances the design more, as I see it.

 

If you were to taper to a point, I think that the taper could follow all the way from the top, rather than letting the descending be parallel sided as it is in the left drawing. To my thinking, the line of the form would be more active as this way rather than straight-lined.

 

Does this make sense?

 

Does the back side taper and broaden as does the front side?

 

Janel

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Hi Janel,

 

Thank you for the considered and very helpful response.

 

It would be possible to taper the RHS from top to bottom, it would mean removing a fair bit more rock from the bottom RHS and make the piece a fair bit smaller as the narrowest point of the RHS is currently around the widest part of the inside tear drop (about 1/3 from the top of the piece).

 

I agree with the top/bottom balance as that was part of my concern in the original design. I don't think I could reduce weight at the top as the design currently stands without substantially altering the design.

 

The back of the piece follows the outline shape and is rounded, the girdle is 1/3 up the side (therefore the back curves from 1/3 up the side, the top curves uses 2/3 of the thickness). The back has not been shaped with a complementary tucked in/over peice, just rounded ready for polishing. Therefore the piece is designed to be viewed from one side only (well it is my first :) ).

 

Another thought I have just had is to taper the LHS a bit more as it heads down to the point, that way the LHS will taper towards the point and the RHS will taper towards the top, will that provide more dynamicism? All good fun any way.

 

I am leaning towards finishing this one as originally planned and cutting another based on my improved understanding. I will be very interested to see what others think?

 

Thanks,

David

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Hi David,

 

Thank you for explaining more about this one. I agree that you should continue on as originally planned and finish it, and then compose a new designs for the next pieces. This one works, and the concept can be adapted endlessly with slight changes, as you are already considering.

 

Janel

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