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“Tasked” to stand horizontal and vertical
Until now, I have done a few horizontal pieces, but none have been as large as my Windshake Walnut wood sculpture, Morph II — and none were “tasked” by me to stand both horizontal and vertical.
Got the right trajectory…and met in the middle
That’s part of my joy — searching for new expressions that challenge both my design and execution capabilities. Sure, I could use my engineering background to get the piece to stand upright structurally, but what would it look like? Pleasing? Agreeable? Or otherwise? What I found, and I’m not sure why I was surprised by the Morph II outcome, was that it looked like two very different pieces.
Experimentation and not being afraid to take risks are key to pushing the bounds. The risk is investing considerable time and energy and ending up with something useless. But if I don’t try, don’t push, then I don’t grow. And with each success comes added experience and added confidence. Even with the occasional failure (which, in time, becomes fewer) much is learned and gained.
From a technical perspective, the specific elements of what makes a piece as large as Morph II more challenging may not be so obvious. It begins with peering into the deep interior to perceive what will happen when both sides meet in the middle.
Further, it’s getting the trajectory of the penetrations right, protecting wall thickness and plotting the flow of the lines as they move deeper. “Seeing” the intersections and flow through and through is like playing three-dimensional chess. Every bit of material removed from one side affects what happens on the other side. I refer to the process as “sneaking up on it.” Removing a bit from here, then there, little by little, until the design and flow come together, agreeably.