03 December 2013

My Own Artworks from Decades Ago

I took a cue from Karl Kenda's art and tried my hand at making some decorations for my first apartment in Richardson, TX, having gone to work for Rockwell International there.  My very first piece is an embarrassment, but I still keep it, although in my closet.  A few of my pieces were based on Hindu designs, such as this one which dates to about 1974:

Sometime in the late eighties, I showed this to a woman friend who commissioned me to do another, but in bright red.  She kept going up in price, but I let her have it for a lesser price because she was going up too high for an amateur's work.
I knew, from my very first effort, that I was better off using geometric patterns and drafting tools to sketch out my initial designs.  Freehand work was not my forte.  I can only barely sketch vaguely credible stick figures, much less anything more complicated.  This next piece is also from about 1974:

I made a small version of this one, on plywood, probably in the eighties, but I've never displayed it.

As you can see, I like deep purple (also the name of one of my favorite bands) and dark blues.  I topcoated all of my paintings with clear acrylic, which makes them easier to clean, but also makes them more difficult to photograph because of the glare.

I tried a bit more freehand work on this next piece, which was done in 1977-78.  I cheated a bit, though, since I took an element from a few Uriah Heep album covers, the tree and the "plane."

All of the above were acrylics on canvas.  The next ones are on plywood, the first being a simplified version of the Hindu motif from my earlier efforts.  I created it in the early 1980s.  It's got some 3-D elements to it, which do not show up in a photograph, as well as a bit of wood veneer attached to it as a "frame" and the arrowheads in the corners:

This next one was also done in the eighties, also on plywood and the painting itself, after painting the plywood white, is entirely wood veneer, including the "frame":

I made a small version of this one, too, but have never displayed it, either.
That's pretty much the extent of my artworks which I liked well enough to hang on my walls.    After this, I moved on to restoring antique and just old wood furniture and that led me to making small models of Medieval weaponry and full size wooden swords and bows and even boomerangs (not from the Medieval period).

When I ran out of wooden things I wanted to make, I started my leatherworking, much of which was also done to a smaller scale, but some full sized, too.   I gave away much of what I made, although I'd like to find something that many would want to buy, yet would be simple enough to make.  I've given dozens of leather roses to women, wives of my classmates at our first reunion (and others), as well as business card holders to my classmates.  This last reunion, in October, caught up with me before I could finish making enough belt pouches for everyone.  I gave away what I had, but did it somewhat surreptitiously so as not to make others feel left out.  I also gave our host professor a leather notebook cover, but it did not have its final touches when I ran out of time.

Most everything I've made over the years involved my Engineering and technical skills more than my nearly non-existent artistic skills.  On the other hand, artists often have no technical skills and my belief is that inventors have both and use both hemispheres of their brains.

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