Thursday, January 24, 2008

Embellishments on Turning

We have been having a lot of fun lately over the rec.crafts.woodturning new group over the question: When is a turning not a turning?

Got me, but in some people's eyes, if a turning is pierced, painted, cut apart, glued up, torched, or a combination of any of the above it somehow ceases to be a turning. Actually a turning per se is often a glue up but still regarded as a turned piece and has been for ages, even by the naysayers of today. Candlesticks are often a turned base and riser glued together and some even glue on a separate cup. Still, even the stalwarts of traditionalism consider it a wood turning. Mallets and gavels usually have the head glued to the handle, yet again are called turnings.

On the other hand, some quibble if today a piece is glued to an obviously turned piece that it has ceased to be a wood turning and is now a something else. We are not sure what.

Legitimately, some wood turnings have become canvasses as such for some to paint on. While some may not call them wood turnings, I think starting with a pretty canvas gives you one up on most people. After all, DaVinci painted the Mona Lisa on a small piece of wood, poplar of some sort I recall, but may be in error.

Surprisingly, most would call this piece a turning, even the traditionalists. Actually the idea to burn a picture on wood is an old one. This was really what we call a "save" as opposed to tossing the piece in the fire. It cracked during drying as hollow forms often do and would have been waste. I glued a crack and burned an image into it, then a few more strands to camouflage the first and so on. Ash is not the easiest wood to burn in this fashion, but it seemed to work. Anyway, it was fun.

Maybe folks just need to lighten up and turn more.

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