Cut, welded, and finished a good supply of hooks and ornaments this week. I had a problem with the shop door that a friend dropped by and fixed, motor now works again. Also cut out two small mermaids and finished those. Photos of process below.
The mermaids are first drawn on the 16 gauge metal with chalk then cut out with the plasma cutter and a very steady hand. The pieces are next transferred to the welding bench and the details and scales are welded on free hand, I use a wire feed, 220 volts, the pieces are cleaned up with the wire wheel and assorted kelp and see life are cut and collected and placed in the best locations and welded on, lastly another clean up and to finish a double spray each side to protect from rust. These mermaids are an affordable scaled down version of the extremely popular horizontal style at 33" with the arms forward. a few of the decorations have been braised with copper or brass and these two also have a copper wire hair detail.
A few fantastic photos of a very tame baby hummingbird that was hanging around some outdoor sculpture in the garden last week included below mermaid pics
This week was fish bones, small bird cages, large dog hooks, more birds on driftwood , and finishing garden stakes from the spheres made last week. No burns, no broken finger nails and a lot of product, a great week with lots of cool weather for welding though the weeding and outside painting maintenance did not get done.
Gorge on Art started off beautiful and sunny in spite of dubious forecasts. A fantastic location for people to come out and see art and meet the artists in their local neighborhood. The well run event goes for blocks on the grassy median directly beside the sparkling waters of the Gorge waterway, off Admirals rd. The event was held 2 weeks earlier than previous years and sunscreen is usually required, not so today, the day was relatively calm until the winds and rain torrents had everyone running for cover and safety, artists were frantically holding tents and grabbing artwork as it sailed past in the early afternoon turn of weather events. The dogs loved all the excitement and were very well behaved. Sorry I do not have the before and after pictures, just the before's, with deceivingly benign puffy clouds and some blue sky. There was no thought whatsoever of grabbing the camera at the turn of events, a time lapse video would have been priceless. I have never torn a show down in such record breaking time.
This week in the shop a lot got done: working on some large quantities of ornaments and garden quail, finished an order for Butchart Gardens, then the fun part, started and finished a full size metal mermaid. The mermaid is first drawn on the metal with chalk then hand cut with the plasma cutter on the cutting bench. The mermaid is transfered to the welding bench and I weld all the defining lines of the face, hair, and scales etc. Next the piece is cleaned up with the wire wheel on the hand grinder, assorted hair, kelp and sea creatures are then cut out and some are braised with copper, others with brass, the scales are also then braised to highlight specific areas. The decorations are placed on to the large piece and welded. The whole piece is wire wheeled again then coated both sides with a clear metal spray to protect from rust. Photo taken of back of mermaid, some beautiful coloring from the heat.
On Now: Coast Collective Gallery Show
Upcoming: Gorge on Art June 23, Dales Gallery July-Aug, Filberg Festival Comox, Glendale Gardens
In the shop this week the main projects were an amazing huge 36" 3D fish ( it helped that I went fishing last week), some dainty shore birds, bent some tall rebar garden stakes, and lastly some elegant 5" spheres, I have no idea what direction they are going in yet... Summer is cccold but great for welding!
Karen Lancey is the metal artist behind Metal Mermaid Welding, at home in North Saanich B.C. Canada