Friday, 27 August 2010

Wasp Sculpture

Over the last week or so, when arriving at the workshop in the morning, I have found lots of wasps nests, or bits of, littering the floor, fallen from the roof where they have dangled since spring.

I haven't had the heart to throw them away, as they're so beautifully made, and the results of such hard labour by the wasps, who first gnawed at my workshop doors, masticated and then spat out the wood into these wafery nurseries.  I had wondered where they all went, but I've found this wonderful resource, Bugs and Weeds - which explained all - and also assisted with identifiction of a Sexton Beetle which I had never seen before.

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Sculpture In The News

Good - and bad!    Chanel Four's new season will see Alastair Sooke present 'The Story of British Sculpture' and they are also showing a new programme with three different artists sculpting a bust of the actor David Thewlis.  I'm really pleased - sculpture seldom gets a look in - Autumn viewing to look forward to.

But also news that sculpture has been stolen, and that sculpture theft is on the rise.   An 8' statue of Isambard Kingdom Brunel has gone missing, believed to have been taken for the scrap metal value.

Moorhen Pond

I've kept an eye out at the pond, for our chick (which I haven't seen again) - but an adult bird has been sitting on the 'makeshift' nest -  refurbished, which now looks robust and protecting.  I was amazed and delighted the birds were attempting another family.

They were very timid and avoided being photographed on, or near the nest.  This morning I found the little bowl of twigs empty and no sign of Moorhens.   I feared another crisis.  Very skittish ducks paddled past, concerned about my presence.  I thought it best if I made my visit short.  Then I heard the smallest peep and caught sight of a little black pom-pom floating on the water.  Then another, and another.

They were very active, foraging and clambering into the reeds.  Then mum appeared and took them off out of sight.  What a delightful encounter and what a miracle is nature.

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Garden Birds

I'm sharing these little planters with you just to celebrate my 'dipping a toe in the water' of the vast ocean named Twitter.  I'm asked increasingly often if I 'tweet', so thought I had better see what it was all about - and it is quite a learning curve, and so very far removed from the comfortable dust of my workshop.  I am launched, and when I learn how, will give you a little button to click so we can meet there too!

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Guides Centenary Camp - Harewood House

This last week has been spent running workshops at Harewood House for the Guides Centenary celebrations.  The international event was a huge camp, with a vast array of activities and opportunities for the many thousands attending.  They had their own theatre, disco and daily newspaper on site.

In my sessions they learned how to use the tools and to carve a small sculpture.  The results were incredible and the tents filled up with carved names, animals, flowers, fish and many other decorative pieces - some went on to chisel their work very small, so they could take them home on the aeroplane. 

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Local Hero - Countrywise

What a surprise! I have been nominated as this week's Local Hero on the ITV programme Countrywise. They showed a short film of me working and being interviewed and featured some of my sculpture.

If you missed it - here's a chance to catch it on ITV Player

I have been overwhelmed by the response and everyone's lovely comments about my stone sculpture.

At the time of filming I was working on 'Beast' and putting some detail on the claws - here he is finished

About Countrywise
Paul Heiney and the team travel to all corners of rural Britain to bring you the very best of our countryside and coast. Countrywise meets the people who make Britain special and unearths the hidden surprises and delights in our back yard.

Paul is joined by historian Bettany Hughes, horticulturalist Rachel de Thame and wild food expert Mike Robinson, each using their specialist knowledge to explore a new dimension of the places they visit. The new series of Countrywise meets wild wolves..... read more
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