If I can count and hit things can I play the drums?

KIMG0194It’s  a serious question. Last summer I bought a partial drum set.  It came with a bass drum, chain driven pedal, 3 toms  but  no snare. It needs new heads, and some hard ware. A high hat and a cymbal would be cool too. Even in its present condition It’s fun to hit the toms and play around with rhythm patterns.  In fact the cat has started playing the kick drum with his tail. Since I don’t want to be shown up by the cat  I really want to fix it up and learn actual patterns and fills. The time is now!. It will be loud and I will probably end up with a bruise or two.  Does anyone have any tips for someone new to drum repair and drumming?   Continue reading

How To Have Fun and Embarrass Yourself with 4 Channel Mixer

 

IMG_20160501_172003I can’t believe it but the 2016 fifty ninety challenge  has begun! I have been organizing instruments and cords, so many cords so recording music is on my mind.I don’t have a very high tech or professional set up. I have a  messy signal chain that could definitely be improved .For instance I really need something to block the background noise and humming that comes from my house and its weird weird wiring. My set up is simple,  I record my guitar (or keyboard) part and my vocal part together, every once in a while I will lay down a few guitar tracks and then record a vocal line  but doing it that way takes a lot of time, which is something that I don’t have lot of when it comes to song writing challenges. Continue reading

Barn Board and an Artist Bio

IMG_20160522_090946 (1)I was lucky to get a pick up truck load full of barn wood two weeks ago. I have not made anything yet but it is some really lovely stuff, with lots of character and history. Wood is constantly changing. It loses moisture and shrinks, it absorbs moisture and expands. One of the cool things about working with wood is  how it can be altered by its environment.  What is nice about this selection is there are several wide planks, 12″ 13″ and 14″ and there are several boards over 6′ long. Wood like that can be difficult to come by. There are sections that are unusable because they are too dry but a majority of the wood is usable. There are 3 short  4″x 4″ posts, one piece that is 1″ thick, and the rest of the wood is planed to 3/4″ or 1/2″ thick. I am excited about working with this new wood.

I also came across some nice pieces of pine last week. I am rip cutting one of the piecesIMG_20160604_203940 in to 2″ wide strips to use for a frame in a table that I am working on.  My table saw does not work so I am using the circular saw to make my cuts. I have gotten pretty good at making straight cuts but there is occasionally a board that is a little wider or narrower. When that happens I just clamp them together and use a hand plane until they are the same width.

IMG_20160603_192442I am working on my bio and artist statement for the Art’s Guild. I always struggle with those kind of projects. I live in Vermont and I work with wood sums it up for me, but I need more than that.  Honestly I have trouble self identifying as an artist. I am getting  more comfortable the longer I do this but it still feels weird. If I want to sell my work wholesale I need to get over that. So no more putting it off. I will finish  my artist statement this week.

Coffee Table

IMG_20151219_153707It’s been a struggle keeping up with all of my projects.  Much of my workshop time is devoted to making and planning Christmas presents. It happens every year, I neglect ongoing projects in favor of last minute gifts that I should have made earlier and I don’t get back to my usual schedule until at least MLK day. I don’t know if it is the holidays or what but  the coffee table mosaic  that i started way back in October took a lot longer than I thought it would, but I put the last pieces in for the dry fit today. Continue reading

The Silo

IMG_20151107_153153I have been working on lots of small projects, looking for local,craft shows, and coming up with new projects for the winter. I have a pair of shutters that I am thinking of turning into a bookshelf. They are pretty worn, which I like. Somebody painted them black once, but It wasn’t the right kind of paint so it’s peeling. Once I sand the rest of the black paint off I will clean it , then I wipe it down with mineral spirits. After I clean up the shutters  I IMG_20151107_203916will put a clear coat on it to seal it and prevent anymore paint from peeling. It won’t be a very big shelf. The shutters are only 3′ tall at most. It will only have three shelves, a top,shelf, a center shelf and a bottom shelf. i am still coming up with a material for the shelves. I have some old wood siding that would be perfect,but I just don’t know if I have enough.  I don’t know why but I have been thinking a lot about the silo we use to live in. It really sucks that it’s gone, but I have a piece of the silo in the workshop. It’s about 5′ tall and 3′ wide, it’s a section of the north west wall. The outside section has horizontal boards and the interior section has vertical boards.  I’ve had the piece since before the fire. The town made the owner put a proper egress window, and to do that they cut a section of the wall.  I kept it when we moved, I hoped to make something cool, but I am at a loss. I could make benches, a couple of tables, maybe shelves?  Since the silo fire I worry that I will make the wrong thing. It may be one of the last pieces of the silo left and I don’t want to mess it up.

A pool cue and a table

IMG_20151027_133950Jess and I went for a drive Saturday and I picked up some things to use in the shop. I bought pool cue for a dollar. I have three pool cues that I have found over the last year or so and I needed a fourth for an idea I had for a table, I am hoping to make a little end table with pool cue legs. I also grabbed this strange little end table for $5. The top is badly damaged, but I will be able to salvage the legs and the apron to re use with a mosaic top. The top of the table has a frame that will make a great mosaic frame, and there is a medallion on on side, that looks like it was added by a previous owner, andIMG_20151027_133732 The top rotates. There is a mechanism underneath that allows the table to spin. I have seen a lot of game tables, in fact I have one that I have been trying to restore for ages now, but most of those have storage underneath, this has no storage. My guess is that it is either a game table or a puzzle table. I did a little research today to make sure I did not have something rare,IMG_20151027_133736 I found an identical table that sold at auction for $25, so I think it’s safe to take this one apart. It does have a date stamp, it’s marked OCT 25 1954. The funny thing is I bought it on October 25, 2015.