Thursday, September 29, 2011

working all over the place

 Is it all over the place? Or is there method in my madness? The rosette is done, the back has roughed out braces on it, the neck is roughed out the belly braces are split and ready to fit, the sides are bent and waiting quietly in the mold- resting, and watching the chaos unfold around them. Above, the neck has it's groove cut for the truss rod.

Above, the bandsaw is used to rough cut the taper on the neck. Below, not guitar bits at all, but part of an explanation for my work methods.
It is a painting from the late nineteenth Century by Paul Cezanne. In the early '70's this painter was a powerful influence on me at a time when I was also reading early ecologists talking about the relationship of everything to everything else. As I recall, this was referred to at the time as the first law of ecology.

As a painter, Cezanne attempted to reconstruct nature in such a way as to bring everything into harmony with its context- and that normally was a rectangular picture plane. So everything on that plane had a role to play, and nothing existed in isolation. A colour here would relate to a colur there, and a gesture or angle here would be answered somewhere else that was suitable. But one of his central messages was to 'advance the whole canvas simultaneously'.  In other words, don't begin at the start, begin everywhere so that the whole system can be realized together, and each part can be considered consciously and unconsciously as a component of the whole. The idea was that this would bring unity (physically, and in any other context of meaning).

analysis and synthesis

I loved this concept of unity, and I generally work this way still. First analysing the parts, then synthesising them through the craft and the ideas that it is able to carry. Fragment (to understand it) then combine harmoniously (to make it).

If there is ever a chance that we can make things that are really well considered and true  expressions of a set of clear, related ideas, then this is how, as a master of nothing in particular, I try to achieve it. Of course none of this will guarantee good craft or sound technique or even worthwhile ideas, but it is at least considered.

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