|Project by Mark A. DeCou||posted 10-10-2012 01:25 PM||3016 views||0 times favorited||7 comments|
The Natural Beauty of Wood
Manzanita Burl, Curly Ash, & Brass
Dimensions: 15.25” tall x 10” wide x 6.5” deep
To purchase this Sculpture, Visit my Etsy.com Store where I have items FOR SALE
Some things were just meant to be…...
Quite a few months ago a guy wanted me to build him a fancy walking cane. He pushed and pushed, and he didn’t like waiting in line like all the rest. I stay booked up on commissions about 18-24 months, and its been longer since the Recession/Depression, so go figure.
And that’s a long time for people to demonstrate their patience, and I understand that. But, I can only do what I can do. I’ve learned not to take deposits until I am ready to work on the item, since cashing their check only exacerbates the pressure on their patience, their spouse nagging them about how I probably took the money and left the country, and so comes the constant emails and phone calls about whether I’m ready to work on their item yet. It’s a lot to juggle actually, and one of the most frustrating things about being in this kind of business, that’s behind figuring up my taxes every year (I like paying the taxes, just don’t like keeping the records straight).
So, he seemed so bent on getting the cane done, or driving me crazy first, that I spent a little over $300 buying the stick of Pink Ivory and this Manzanita Burl, begging Griffin Exotic Woods to sell them to me. Manzanita is a difficult wood to buy, and even more difficult to use. I was to make a walking cane handle out of this beautiful hunk of wood, but before I cut it up, I decided to wait until I got the guy’s money first to cover it. I’m glad I waited…
Normally, I don’t buy such expensive materials without the customer’s money up front, but convinced this guy would do what he said, I bought the materials when I found them so that I could get his project finished, and him off my back.
After the materials arrived, he started questioning everything, what about this, and what about that, and the price of this and that, and needing everything in writing etc. So, I summarized all of the emails back and forth and put them into one formal quote in writing. Then, very quickly I got his response that he would send the deposit check right away….
But, the check never came.
I got so frustrated with it, that making the cane wouldn’t have been any fun anyway, so he “ain’t getting his cane now.”
It’s been about 9 months now, and he couldn’t get me to build him a cane if he came in the Shop on his knees begging with full payment in cash…....Ok, ok, maybe that would work after all.
So, over the many months waiting for that “check”, I kept looking at this beautiful hunk of Manzanita Burl sitting quietly in my shop.
At first I couldn’t figure out where to cut the Manzanita to make a cane handle out of it. Then, I just couldn’t bring myself to consider cutting it all.
Then, I started envisioning it as a natural piece of sculpture. Beautiful things that God builds with His hands, a man like me can’t improve upon. So, I took a pick and pulled out all of the bark inclusions, sand and gravel, and sanded, polished, and sealed it with Satin Lacquer. I mounted it on a piece of Curly Ash that I have been saving for many years for something special, and now I have a Sculpture.
And pull off the curtain, I present to you the “Natural Wood Sculpture”
Now, I need to figure out what to do that beautiful stick of Pink Ivory…..
thanks for reading along,
-- Mark DeCou - American Contemporary Craft Artisan - www.decoustudio.com