Preparing to Hold Summer Workshops

The studio looks like it was searched by the vice squad.

I am preparing for a pair of workshops with slight variations. Both involve the concept and construction of a sketchbook form, the basic and some advancements as well as an introduction to a more formal structure.

So – there are piles of bones and sticks and Russian flax cord and old Irish linen wire twist thread and needles and tool kits which are under revision and bottles of dirt and sand from places like Mount Shasta and pipe stone from Arizona and metal flake from the auto shop and adhesives and butterflies and paste and gear, lots of gear. There might be a library and there are revisions to the place mat, the guiding light of some of the techniques.

Made a batch of wax varnish this morning. I never kit out a workshop – I want students to do the work. But there are things that if everyone had to do, we would not complete a conversation. Some operations are easy and others, like cutting board out of a large piece, are more easily done by me and Jacques. Overall we need a lot of board.

There are delicious parts as well. Washing the excess dye and other chemistry out of the fabric for the spine structures and ironing it all is oddly satisfying. But the piles get ungainly.

We are also in the throws of designing the menu for the Wednesday night dinner party and studio tour. Good eats to be had. Local delicacies perhaps but we will know more after a trip to the farmers market.

And, of course, the usual pre-workshop surprise. After all the information goes out some fertile brain gland kicks out a new revelation, idea or modification to a process. They are often small in appearance and initially, out of context. They may or may not be meaningless but the observable pattern IS reliable:  just before a workshop something new and cool shows up that needs to be described, maybe taught.

All that happened about three weeks ago and will either have utility for someone. Or it’s possible the whole thing will be for me a personal useful nuance. Can’t know until you tell the story.

And I get a lot of help from Nemo as he inhabits my stool.

Note that if people contact me with interest and info, they will be on the first mailing list for next summer’s workshop.

Copyright 2018 – Timothy C. Ely – All Rights Reserved

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