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MartinH

MartinH

Age : 49
Location : The South
Registration date : 2011-01-04

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PostSubject: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptySun Jul 31, 2011 10:13 pm

I've purchased briar from both PIMO and Mark Tinsky, been happy with everyone of them. Here is my third attempt at carving a pipe.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/16426332@N00/

The first pipe I ever made turned out strange, and completely off-center. The second one I liked better, but had to rusticate due to too many flaws. Today, I decided to let the wood "talk" to me, and take my carving cues from the grain. You can see the current state of the pipe at the above Flickr link. I love the grain on the bottom and the front, as it has a very nice sunburst pattern. The right side of the pipe has strange birds-eye, and I'm not sure if I want to leave it or rusticate it. The other side has a nicer grain. I'm not sure how to treat the side with the birds-eye, and -well- ugly grain pattern. I know that I suck taking pics of my pipes. I'm just using the camera on my phone, and the lighting is complete, utter garbage. If the pictures are too bad for advice, I understand.

Anywhoo, some carving advice is greatly appreciated. I tried to get every angle of the pipe.

Thanks,

Martin
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mark
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mark

Registration date : 2008-07-02

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyMon Aug 01, 2011 12:31 am

WOW, some nice grain on part of that from what I can tell,,,

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tNd



Age : 44
Location : Croatia, Osijek
Registration date : 2011-07-04

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyMon Aug 01, 2011 1:02 am

...
the pipe has no shape - it is a freehand but i can't find "a story" arround it... it simply does not have it... if you make a freehand, one thing is to let the wood talk to you in order to make a pipe - this is mostly through the faults and grain directions... still the shape has to be something... lines, curves, some story behind it... here, i can't find one...
second thing i noticed - the pipe is to chunky - it is still not out of the block... you have to remove more to loose the block shape you can still see there..
and third - i have a problem with a mouthpiece... it seems to me not to fit to that pipe...
..
this all is normal for a new pipemaker... ...
my advice - do not be affraid to remove more material... make shapes.. let curves and lines emerge from the block ... just do not be affraid to remove wood from it.... than the mouthpiece might also work as you intended...
...
hope this helps - please do not be offended or something - i just wanted to be honnest (it is only my opinion and i am also a young pipemaker so my opinion does not count much right...)... Smile just wanted to help you make better pipes and i had to go through the same path as you are Smile Smile
looking forward to see more of your pipes...

....
p.s. if you are a member of Pipemakers Forum - look for SWM memeber pipes... he has a specialty of making pipes that are "of center" and to follow grain and make the best of it... Smile maybe this will help you too Smile
regards
daniel
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MartinH

MartinH

Age : 49
Location : The South
Registration date : 2011-01-04

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyMon Aug 01, 2011 6:03 pm

tND - thanks for the honest feedback. It is much appreciated. I've modified the pipe today and the bit as well. I also think you are correct that it is still too much in the block. I am struggling with this on this briar because I want to preserve the beautiful sunburst at the bottom. Oh were it only at the top. Smile

I am going to keep working on it and see where it goes. I do have an idea that I will need to work on more.

Once again, thanks for the great feedback.

Martin
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tNd



Age : 44
Location : Croatia, Osijek
Registration date : 2011-07-04

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyTue Aug 02, 2011 12:46 am

i am happy you understood my intention... thank you...
...
sometimes when i don't know what to do with a block that is half shaped - i leave it for few days... than when i come back to it, i usually have an idea or something pop's out of my head and i know what to do....
i have a similar problem right now with the olive freehand i am doing right now - it is to bulky and to much square like... i left it to rest for few days and yesterday i think i figured what to do Smile Smile we will see.... Razz
i would be happy to see the result Razz
thank you and best regards
daniel
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sand18f

sand18f

Age : 70
Location : Southern Appalachia
Registration date : 2011-01-17

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyMon Aug 15, 2011 12:59 am

Martin. On the next pipe, only allow yourself to work on it for 30 min. maximum per day.
No matter how much you want to do otherwise. I promise it will make a huge difference in the end product.
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Frontkämpfer 72

Frontkämpfer 72

Age : 47
Location : Catonsville, MD. U.S.A.
Registration date : 2011-10-11

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptySat Oct 22, 2011 10:19 pm

I like it. Nice.

Erik
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Blackhorse
Moderator
Blackhorse

Age : 72
Location : Portland, Oregon Area
Registration date : 2010-10-23

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyThu Oct 27, 2011 8:20 pm

An artist, with his own muse, need only answer to himself. You're doing fine, bro.

But...I don' t think you've tortured yourself quite enough yet. Well, that will come.

Razz

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My third self-carved pipe Puffy

My third self-carved pipe D6bddf10My third self-carved pipe 29400910My third self-carved pipe 114e6110My third self-carved pipe Ddb39b10My third self-carved pipe Cf77ce10My third self-carved pipe Dd692012My third self-carved pipe Cowboy13
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Sasquatch

Sasquatch

Location : The Garage
Registration date : 2008-12-14

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyThu Oct 27, 2011 10:16 pm

An artist must satisfy his own muse, yes. But oppose this to the fact, and it is a fact, that an experienced carver can look at a pipe produced by a novice, and guess within about 5 pipes, how many pipes the other fellow has made. Why? Because we all make the same mistakes, all make the same assumptions as we carve (OH MY GOD I'M GONNA SAND RIGHT THROUGH INTO THE BOWL!).

tNd's advice and critique is bang on. I will add my own to it, and suggest that instead of working on freehands which have no "right or wrong" in some sense, work on established shapes for awhile, learn how to make an "ordinary" pipe, and THEN go back to freehands. The improvement of the freehands will be tenfold, I promise, and I know this because I have also walked this path.

Understanding how things need to be proportioned, understanding the idea that there are certain lines which must be carried and certain lines which must be terminated... it's all part of learning how to make a truly attractive pipe. If you compare the "quickie" freehands of say, Nording, (at around 80 bucks a pipe) to the truly artistic pipes of a Tonino Jacono, (at around 500), a guy sees grace and balance in the Jaconos that don't exist in the Nordings.

Answer this, for example: looking at a stummel, how long should the stem be? 2"? 3"? It's different, and the "right" length depends on the shape and size of the stummel, the style of the stem, the bend, etc.

Balancing out the idea that there is a "right" way for any particular pipe to look, or any particular piece of a pipe, against the idea that there is basically an infinity of shapes and sizes to work with, is one of the most interesting and challenging aspects of making pipes.

In other words, Martin, go make some more!
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Blackhorse
Moderator
Blackhorse

Age : 72
Location : Portland, Oregon Area
Registration date : 2010-10-23

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyFri Oct 28, 2011 12:17 am

Hmmm. Yeah, in a world where everyone has the visual learning or engineering bent and can parlay that into hand skills...that's well and good. Some guys have it in them and some never really will (and this is in no way a reference to the author of this thread). I just think about some guy out there, admiring his truly unique freehand that he carved himself...man, he's so proud of his masterpiece. Then he tries to do a bulldog. Well, kiss THAT freehand career goodbye. Kinda sad.

It reminds me of my daughter. When she was in grade school if you asked her if she could sing...was she a good singer? She would just beam up at you and declare that she was indeed a really good singer. She, in fact, loved to sing. Then she went off to what we call Junior High School (grade seven) where she learned the awfull truth. She really wasn't a good singer after all. It seems as though her teachers there and some new friends thought it was best she knew 'the truth'. So they told her. I never heard her sing again.

So maybe if she hadn't gone from 'freehand-singing' and tried moving into 'established-singing' (just to join the concepts a little more firmly) she'd still be doing it. But she just wasn't one of those who has the right skill set to master the experience with the standard stuff and then apply it back to the free forms. Trying to learn what line or note to hold and for how long in order to create a truly attractive song didn't help her in the least. It ended her singing career. Knowing there was a right way...and then her way...it really didn't help her one little bit.

What you've suggested is a pretty traditional route to improvement in our culture. It's the one most of us have likely taken along our various tortuous pathways to improvement. I know it's one of the routes I've sent a number of my students down. But there have been others, like my now silent daughter, for whom it would have been exactly the wrong thing...since we're all different...and we learn and grow with sometimes startlingly different ways.

Just a thought.

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Founding BoB Bombers Squadron Commander, Un-Ret
My third self-carved pipe Puffy

My third self-carved pipe D6bddf10My third self-carved pipe 29400910My third self-carved pipe 114e6110My third self-carved pipe Ddb39b10My third self-carved pipe Cf77ce10My third self-carved pipe Dd692012My third self-carved pipe Cowboy13
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Kyle Weiss

Kyle Weiss

Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyFri Oct 28, 2011 12:31 pm

I have two thoughts on this, one cent per:

#1¢ - There is the "establishment," which I'll use loosely, which determines what something should be, how it should be approached, what the result should, to some regard to scope, value and product, be. This "establishment" assumes that every encroachment into its realm and those who encroach should be subject to these same rules, because it is assumed they have the same goals. These goals are the bar set, and respect, appreciation and acceptance will only be fully obtained therein. There is a method, discipline, hard work and results that speak for themselves.

#2¢ - There is chaos. Call it personal achievement, experimentation, avant-garde, abstract or whatever term you like. Without this "random soup," there is little freedom, and it is the place where even "the establishment" once had to be in order to get where they are. This unabashed creativity can scream inappropriately in the face of order, history, method and education. That's what it was designed to do as a practice, and is paramount to self-teaching and personal discovery. It has the advantage of choice, you can choose it once you have been part of "the establishment" or you can continue to hone your "skills" as they are, seeing if you can perfect them. Incidentally, there is a method, discipline, hard work and results here, too--they also speak for themselves.

I've been an artist and a musician for years. I was classically trained for at least 10 of them, and I have chosen to abandon that path to return to where I began: to the avant-garde and abstract. Most do not enjoy what I do as music, it is not their preference. This is perfect to me. It means the enjoyment I'm getting from making my songs is pure. It also leaves me isolated. This is also perfect. With regard to my art, I have a lot of trouble with abstract work, and I wish to learn more. The concept is foreign to me, and it seems so easy to just "make a mess" and call it art.

With all of that in mind, it comes back to satisfaction. My first pipe was presented here, was a whirlwind of blood, curse words, learning as I went, and it came out alright. Perfect? Not by a long shot. I had no idea what I was doing. It shows in my work. I put it up for the worst criticism I imagined I would get. Luckily, it was accepted and spared me the bite of those who know. Make no mistake, if I want to aim for "the establishment" (which in this regard, I certainly do) I have a long way to go.

In the mean time, like a child I molded, I will always love this first pipe, even if my lips are the only ones it sees, and my eyes the only ones that appreciate it. Like any art piece, visual or aural, it is a story of what I did and where I was, and where I might be one day, and that means more to me than anything.
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Sasquatch

Sasquatch

Location : The Garage
Registration date : 2008-12-14

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyFri Oct 28, 2011 9:08 pm

Kyle Weiss wrote:
. The concept is foreign to me, and it seems so easy to just "make a mess" and call it art.




This.

And a guy who has not made many pipes is going to struggle like hell, because it's actually pretty difficult to make a pipe, and when he's done, he's in all likelihood going to have a fairly big, heavy piece that lacks the refinement we expect in "high grade" pipes. It's not to say that a guy doesn't have talent. Just... pipes are fairly hard. And what's especially hard is getting better at making them without having someone say "Hey, have you considered what shape of stem might flatter that bowl? What proportion of shank might highlight the shaping?" You don't (or at least, I didn't) have those thoughts without help, and so improvement without coaching is very difficult.

Good painters look at paintings and within various style categories, can still recognize other good painters.

Another way to say this is that someone working hard at something doesn't make it "art".
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Sasquatch

Sasquatch

Location : The Garage
Registration date : 2008-12-14

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyFri Oct 28, 2011 10:06 pm

Another nother way to look at this is that no one is saying "Martinh, that pipe sucks, you're no good at this." Rather, he is being encouraged to continue working at pipes, and directed in such a way that he will more quickly be in a position to offer something that people will want to buy, if that's his wish.

When a homebrewer says "Try this beer!" and it's cloudy and tastes like lactobacillus, it's wrong to say "Wow that's great beer, way to go."
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Boxerbuddy

Boxerbuddy

Location : Boston, Massachusetts
Registration date : 2011-10-06

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptySat Oct 29, 2011 1:35 am

Maybe this will add a little perspective....as a former telephone company employee, I was required to go to pole climbing school. They send classes of anywhere from 10-20 people to these classes, if you do not pass the class, you cannot work in the field.

So I get there and on my 1st day I am an absolute mess. There's a certain way to address the pole and and a sequence of actions that you are supposed to follow.....I just couldn't get it down, to the point that the instructors were making fun of me and everything.

The classes are staggered so you could see groups of guys in various stages of the class. I'm watching guys slide down the pole still attached to their belts, hit the ground and get up with a belly and chest full of big ass splinters and I'm saying to myself "man that is gonna be me in a couple of days...that is if I make it that far...this is gonna suck".


So I got there on the second day and after a couple of hours it just clicked. I started to get it and I took off from there. I ended up being the 1st person in my class to take and finish the final test.
I know pipe making and pole climbing are not even close to being similar, but I think you can understand the parallel.

In no way am I qualified to judge what a good pipe is, but I would take these guys's constructive criticism and apply some of it to your next project. Maybe it'll "click" for you on one of your next forays into pipemaking and you'll become the next Sixten!
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Lestrade

Lestrade

Age : 52
Location : North Carolina
Registration date : 2011-10-09

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptySat Oct 29, 2011 6:58 am

MartinH, your post and photo's are inspiring to me as I have always wanted to give it a go carving a pipe. But alas, I'm not much of an artist or carver and would not even know where to start. Thanks for sharing your journey, always glad to see someone carving their own pipes and wish you the best with it and hope you have lots of fun doing it.
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Kyle Weiss

Kyle Weiss

Location : Reno, NV
Registration date : 2011-09-18

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptySat Oct 29, 2011 12:38 pm

Sasquatch wrote:


Another way to say this is that someone working hard at something doesn't make it "art".

I have said for years, tedium, complication and over-compensation are not art. I may not claim to know what art is, precisely, but I know what art isn't. If you are just enjoying something you make for the sake of it, may you be happy in your hobby. Smile

Also, "Try my first moonshine! I just figured I'd take a stab at it."

"Hey, this stuff tastes great! I'm blind, but seriously, you're awesome!" Laughing

Hyperbole is fun, but with a point. Cool

MartinH should keep trying, because there needs to be more people trying things. In a society and nation of people who want convenience and service-related things "just done for them," making something and acquiring a skill is kind of a unique concept among the accepted consumer-only norm.

I'm going to keep trying to carve pipes too, and that's that.
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MartinH

MartinH

Age : 49
Location : The South
Registration date : 2011-01-04

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PostSubject: Re: My third self-carved pipe   My third self-carved pipe EmptyThu Dec 29, 2011 7:52 pm

Hello Brothers.

I finally looked at this thread after months of forgetting about it. I wanted to say "thanks" for all the feedback. I have made another pipe, and it turned out worse than ever. Smile LOL

But, I have two more pieces of briar's laying around, waiting for me. I really think the comment about only working on the pipe a little at a time. That sounds like the one thing that will make a large difference, because I try to get a pipe done in one day. This is mainly the case because I have a young child, and the time spent on carving pipes is beyond rare.

Alas, I really have no intention on selling anything I make. It's just a hobby for me. the one thing I do like, is that if I do get a pipe to turn out "just right" then I have a great smoking pipe, that is truly mine. Smile

The pipe in this picture unfortunately burned through the chamber and is now nothing more than a tamper. I had carved this particular briar in honor of a very gentle giant, my doggie Ginger, who passed away in October, very quickly from stomach cancer.

But, the pipe I'm working on now, will be dedicated to her, and if it is a failure, then the next one will be the "Ginger Pipe." Smile

I'm working more on drawing the pipe out in great detail with complete measurements, before I work the briar. All the pipes I've made so far, have been "eye balled" without the use of any calipers, or any other detailed woodworking tools. I just used a dremmel, large sander and buffer. I'm going to take a much more detailed and slow approach to the next pipe I work on, and will probably work on it only a little at a time. That way I won't get over eager and make stupid mistakes.

All the pipes I've made have been made too fast, and in an urge, need, to get them done. So, I'll say myself that those are rookie mistakes.

As far as that goes, thanks for the comments and feedback.

Sincerely,

Martin
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