tsuba class work and homework

For work in progess and finished pieces

tsuba class work and homework

Postby Chris A » Sat May 13, 2017 4:17 pm

This tsuba was initiated at Ford's Intro class module 2 in March this year; it was the subject of the weeks class showing the process and considerations in designing a tsuba. We were given a strong start with Ford laying out the arrangement of the gingko leaves making suggestions and setting an example.

By the end of the week both front gingko were leaves inlaid and the top one carved and some background carved around the kozuka-ana, then back home to work out the rest for ourselves. :(

Creating a new design of this type seem very like painting, the background being as important as the foreground, everything being in balance and harmony; a different process from trying to copy an good earlier work (utsushi) where all the design is done.

Deciding on the treatment of the gingko leaves (2 front 2 back, Ford suggested possibly make them all different both as an aid to learning and also might make a more interesting design and so I have veined the lower one.

Also suggested to provide more interest, was to add some other smaller inlays, original design had spherical ginkgo seed pods just sketched in as an idea, these in nature are quite large in relation to the leaves after some discussion these were deemed perhaps not right; so once home I researched other options coming up with immature male flowers. Inlaid in copper these seem quite prominent but hopefully when patinated/aged they will be less so.
desgink1a.jpg
sketches for possible layout involving seedpods flowers tec

Ginkgo_biloba_male_flower.jpg
male gingko flower

desgink1.jpg
details of chosen stylised flower

postginkx.jpg
where I'm at

ging.jpg

I don't really know if what I have done so far is any good; I've been looking at it too long; any input would be welcome.

Next it seems important to have some sort of idea of the patinated appearance, so that will be the next job.
'If I see further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants' - Newton
User avatar
Chris A
Sponsor
Sponsor
 
Posts: 101
Joined: Wed May 13, 2015 1:07 pm
Location: East Riding of Yorkshire , England
Has thanked: 0 time
Been thanked: 15 times

Re: tsuba class work and homework

Postby Doug Sanders » Mon May 15, 2017 1:23 pm

Hi Chris- I'll take the bait and point out a few things as I've been studying your work over a morning cup of tea.
First off, I think that at around 4 o'clock on your seppa dai, you're curving the line a little too strongly inward. I suspect you're trying to draw the eye into the curve of the lower ginko leaf, but to me it just seems to be the wrong trace of an elipse. Should be an easy correction.

Secondly, I think there's maybe too much going on, and all of it is the same visual weight. The lower leaf is fantastic; its curves echo others and it has a nice graceful drape and line to it. The upper leaf however seems awkward and its stem echoes and reinforces the same vertical line as the 'branch', which in turn seems to compete with the right edge of the tsuba in a weird, crowded way. I think part of the issue stems from your early drawings which all have three leaves making a composition. The fact that the third leaf would get chopped off by the tusba edge and not lend its compositional weight and balance seems to have been overlooked. Also, in all the drawings, the added element- be it fruit, seed or flower plays a supporting role, harmonizing with the leaves but I think what you've created now competes too strongly because of its size.
Is there a way to add the tiniest bit of outward arc to the upper leaf stem?

Add to this the hitsu ana(s) and the background texture and there's just a bit too much seasoning in the stew. :( I think you need to focus on a main, single narrative- perhaps the graceful lower leaf, and its fine engraved lines- and try to find a way to visually- both in terms of texture and compositional weight- push the other elements back.

This is a really ambitious piece!

best hopes for a good outcome-
-Doug
User avatar
Doug Sanders
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 1238
Images: 0
Joined: Mon Mar 17, 2008 3:09 pm
Location: Indiana, USA
Has thanked: 33 times
Been thanked: 47 times

Re: tsuba class work and homework

Postby Chris A » Tue May 16, 2017 12:39 pm

Doug,
Many thanks for passing a critical eye over my efforts, and for writing some solid suggestions regarding the design side of this project, all of which I am very grateful for.

I agree the outline of the seppa-dai at 4 'o' clock does look wrong; I can't check it's geometry right now as the tsuba is the other way up in the pitch bowl at present. I'm thinking the shape of the seppa dai is pretty much set in stone (corr. metal) and every other element should fit with it, will check it out later.

Agreed, the background too prominent and needs to be put out of focus, I was enjoying the rocky landscaping too much!

I thought the flowers were possibly too big, being a different metal not helping, will attempt to diminish them if I can.

The third leaf and the parallel leaf and stalk in the hands of the Master seemed to work. You are right, an ambitious project for me both technically and aesthetically, Ford threw us novice swimmers into a swirling torrent, if I make to the shore I'll be happy.

Time being of the essence on a course it was imperative to crack on with exercise which I think was 75% practical and 25% design consideration. It does highlight the need for an absolutely resolved design before putting chisel to metal.

gingpatx.jpg
quick paination to get an idea
'If I see further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants' - Newton
User avatar
Chris A
Sponsor
Sponsor
 
Posts: 101
Joined: Wed May 13, 2015 1:07 pm
Location: East Riding of Yorkshire , England
Has thanked: 0 time
Been thanked: 15 times

Re: tsuba class work and homework

Postby jhobson » Mon May 22, 2017 4:25 pm

Doug Sanders wrote: The lower leaf is fantastic;
-Doug

Yup!
User avatar
jhobson
Sponsor
Sponsor
 
Posts: 286
Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2010 7:59 am
Location: j6 M25, England
Has thanked: 1 time
Been thanked: 18 times


Return to Show and tell

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

cron