make art everyday

In the past I’ve taken a couple of stabs at turning out 30 projects in 30 days. My first attempt was the most ambitious, trying to churn out, not only a project a day for 30 days, but to make them also be a sellable one every day. In the end I created more than 30, and spent about as much time on the photographing and blogging as I did the actual work. Quite the busy month – perfect cover for my wife to catch me off guard with a surprise birthday party – one in which I sold several of said projects as Christmas presents.

Anyhow, I followed the success of that attempt, with another the following June. This time, not out to make something sellable every day for 30 days, just to make 30 projects within 30 days time. Again, the photographing and the blogging were the real time killers. This time, I had the company of 2 fellow Lumberjocks, joining me with their own 30 projects in 30 days challenge.

I know I learned loads, despite the pressure on myself. I got really good at sharpening my chisels (as most of my projects came off the lathe) as well as the photography aspect. It had been sooo many years since I’d lived in the highschool and college darkrooms.

There was to be a third attempt at 30 projects, but with moving the following November, that was not to be. Coupled with setting up a new shop, and a really cold garage shop at that, the April and June stabs were put on hold for want of getting things situated and running. Still need myself a new tablesaw. One that turns on 100% of the time, and turns off any amount of the times I throw the switch… but I digress.

This month (Yes not a 30 day month, but whatever) I’m getting back to the original spirit of the 30 projects in 30 days challenge – in where fellow artists of every stripe, painters, writers and so on – were merely challenging themselves to get out and PRACTICE their craft everyday for a month. (if you want to take a good picture, you have to burn through a roll of film.)

What with spending half a year without a working shop, I’m really itching to just get out there and do anything. I’ve got a notebook full of some creative ideas, but really should get back into the swing of things before attempting new and different things. I really should just get out there and make some sawdust with no agenda or end product in site, before another over the top attempt at 30 sellable projects in 30 days come Fall. Or even before attempting anything remotely planned out. Get into the groove, get a feel for things – or at least get the chisels all nice and sharp (and pick up some new toys while I’m at it) 😉


with little or no plan or agenda, here are the first 3 stabs at turning out something, or nothing this month.

July 3rd – 5th

Attempt at making a 7.5 inch plate or small platter:

Salvaged Cherry board, before.

Bottom of plate, with sister board. Cleans up really nice, don’t you think?

Side/top view, mounted on lathe. Need to mount this on a glue block, buy or rig up some cole jaws to trim off that middle portion… OR… I could use this as the bottom level of a 2 or 3 tier candy/dessert rack. Yeah! Oh the fun of being able to run with design/project changes!

Attempt at a small maple bowl with a walnut stripe.

Profile of small bowl. approx 1.5 cup capacity.

Got a little tooo close to the bottom when trying to clean up the inside corners. well… it’s surely neither a bowl or colander now. I imagine I can sand the bottom smooth, glue up another layer and still make something out of this… A notch in the original glued up blank forced me to make this bowl a bit smaller than I would have liked anyhow.

And finally, I had this chunk of applewood. A baseball sized, somewhat triangularish piece, cut from the intersection of three branches. Not good for much, with some cracks in it, but surely home to some fascinating grain.

Apple vessel:

Approx 2 3/4 inches across, 2 1/2 tall. Hole bored out with a 1 3/8 forstner bit and cleaned up with a scraper – that is some tough, hard wood inside. Outside sanded to 220 and finished – wood and bark – with Howards Orange oil and beeswax.

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