OK here goes. It’s been a while since I last wrote but I’ve been busy all the same. My sculpting activities have been very repetitive and sometimes tedious but I am getting to the end of a stage. So much so that I’ve decided to start thinking about a third sculpture.
I wanted to do some more work with the clinker effect. Also I have started cleaning up a solid piece of wood which I might use. I guess these two ideas have come together to form the sketch above. Looks a bit like a woodlouse I think!
Here’s the piece of wood which is a part of an old keel acquired by the museum in its early days.
I suspect it was once a piece of Shamrock V’s keel which was refurbished at Pendennis ship yard in Falmouth in 1999. Others disagree and think it may be part of Adela which was also altered in Pendennis. Either way it’s solid teak, weighs a ton and is coated in a firm sheath of epoxy or filler about 6 mm thick. I’m chipping it off right now, hence the mallet and old chisel. I spent the day on Friday working on it. An hour of this time was spent single handedly lifting it onto a larger block which will function as a workbench. (I safely used an industrial car jack and blocks of wood to do this.)
This is the maquette I have started to make one fifth size in balsa wood in order to explore the idea further.
As for the clinker style of making wooden boats ….. its about overlapping planks and nailing these together to form a watertight shell. This works because wood expands when it gets wet allowing the planks of a clinker boat to seal themselves together. My interest as an artist is in the pattern these overlapping lines make on a boat.
This is a boat I made a few years ago called Pandora. You can see the clinker construction although it’s not traditional. I made her with modern 6 mm marine plywood and epoxy resin so there was no need for the planks to take up water and of course she was a lot lighter as a result. The strange thing being lifted out of the boat is a set of shaped moulds together with battens which made the shape of the boat. I just needed to wrap the ply planks around this initial shape. See the Selway Fisher catalogue for more details – they have stolen my photographs!