Saturday, July 31, 2010
Friday, July 30, 2010
Thursday, July 29, 2010
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Monday, July 26, 2010
Sunday, July 25, 2010
Saturday, July 24, 2010
A round rock and a square rock went for what was not a very fast roll one fine year. The square rock was having trouble keeping up.
Friday, July 23, 2010
While most indoor fireplaces obviously can't be built 'dry laid', an outdoor fireplace can actually incorporate dry stone elements into much of the design. As long as the fire box and and smoke channel is well sealed using mortar and masonry bricks and clay flues it will work well. However with proper attention to a close fitting of the stones and brickwork, (to ensure that the smoke travels out through the chimney the way it should) the entire fireplace presumably could be dry laid. If the work is carefully done and the design is not too 'Fred Flintstoney' the result can be quite stunning.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
There are times when a wooden board or two come in handy. A big stone is not as scary if you know you may not have to dead lift it to get it into a wall. By simply rolling or walking it up a plank the process becomes much easier. Dry stone walling is not about breaking your back, it is about letting physics and the stones work for you.
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Except for councilor Fudge the town council in Port Hope voted unanimously in favour of not honouring Farley Mowat, by squashing a proposal supported by a growing movement of people (in Canada and around the world ) requesting that the name of the small residential street that leads to the dry stone boat built in his honour in 2006 be changed. (see Handmade Craft http://thinking-stoneman.blogspot.com/2010/04/handmade-craft.html) Percy street has only one house on it, and that resident is also in favour of the name change. Extensive research including delving into the town archives gave no definitive indication to who or what the present street name refers to.
Tuesday, July 20, 2010
The large outdoor fireplace that we have been working all last week is starting to take shape. This unusual dry stone structure has given us the opportunity to stretch our walling skills a bit more. It is being built on a concrete pad so the batter does not need to be as much as a traditional dry laid wall or terrace. The 'bones' of the fireplace were done in block first, to which we have added a herringbone firebrick liner and a dry stone hearth, with two large flagstones creating a mirrored seating area either side. The exterior cladding using boulders and random quarried limestone tailings are all dry laid, as is the segmented arch over the actual fireplace opening. (That's 'segmented', not 'cemented' )
Monday, July 19, 2010
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Still trying to source enough 'pre-made' hearting for the workshop coming up this weekend. However I also have had someone volunteer to come and 'make' hearting on Saturday. Mark Lovell was a student during the first week of last year's dry stone bridge course in Russell. Deep voiced, bald fellow. Nice guy. Is this ok by you? Having someone volunteer to do the labour-intensive job of making hearting during the workshop sounded like a pretty good deal to me.
Saturday, July 17, 2010
Trying to grasp why there isn't more of a hands-on excitement about dry stone walling here in Canada.
Friday, July 16, 2010
Thursday, July 15, 2010
On the theme of Sketchup once again, I include the picture of the design (in Sketchup done in February of 2008) and a photo of the finished Church Ruins which we completed the first phase of that same year at the end of May 2008. We were pleased to see how close the dry stone folly looked to the drawing.
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Looking through the warehouse you come across amazing stuff - castles skyscrapers cars gardens landscapes ships jets bridges you name it, all in amazing three dimensional detail. These are all files you can download and then with the Orbit tool hover around and view from any position.
I usually like to 'impressionize' the final rendering I do of a proposed project to actually make it look less realistic. I find if I make it too life-like it sometimes spoils the impact for the client and can even produce an opposite result. I suspect at least once that a detailed realistic drawing I did became an end in itself, as the people I drew it for no longer needed a real wall - just a picture of one in front of their house to look at and show their friends, was good enough!
I drew this picture of the outdoor fireplace we have started building this week in Baltimore so that the clients could see better the changes to the original design I proposed. It has some complicated planes and angles in it so it was worth drawing out carefully in Sketchup to see if it would work from every angle. Peter, the owner, gave us the go-ahead based on this design and probably his satisfaction with all the walls we have done already on the property. Later this week I hope post some pics on how our work is coming along and how it compares with the drawing.
Let me know if any of you are using Sketchup.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Is there anyone who studies or mingles or works with stone, who doesn't feel an affinity with lichen? There is a relationship there, which Thoreau aptly 'touches' on when he writes..“I seem to see somewhat more of my own kith and kin in the lichens on the rocks than in any books.” (Journal: 15 December 1841 Writings* Volume 7, page 296.)