Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Semesters end


I like thinking of this work as something that happened to a handrail by his own accord. He seems to have given up on his surroundings, the lack of his own stability has given him freedom to take over a different space.

Semesters end

After another long haul of a semester the dust has finally settled and I am ready to reflect a bit on the outcome. I set out early in the month of September on a piece that took pretty much the duration of the semester. I was interested in creating a work that defied the idea of the ascending/ descending nature of a stairwell based on changing the ordinary formal language of a banister handrail. 

Some crude cauls I used for a series of glue ups.

This particular technique for joinery gave me the freedom for error in glue up as well as a room for grain movement. 

A zillion passes later the form began to take shape.

Saturday, October 22, 2011



With the help of Hurricane Irene and my good friend Travis Melvin my website is now finally operational. whoo hoo and all that jazz. More to come as things get oiled and polished.


When I first came across this I thought to myself, "wow, it's like a fucked up Rothko painting..."


I thought this work was beautiful, an amazing use of colored pencils that have been connected through traditional weaving methods. Blew my mind.


So here we are deep into fall once again, the trees are still the same and there is a slight chill in the morning that can only be the remains of some coastal fog. My sunflowers are way past their prime and the lawn is starting to look like an old shag carpet that has seen better days. I traded a chicken for a pumpkin today, halloween is near. With the semester in full swing I thought it would be appropriate to show some work I have been doing recently. These one week assignments have been valuable to my current thoughts about my advancement in spring, I think of these as formal investigations.

 Deepo Vortex


Monday, August 15, 2011

Scabbing on

Thought this was a great concept, blending the two forms of chair and bed frame together. I want one.


Saturday, July 30, 2011

Cassiopeia Dreams of Better Days

I thought I would post this quote by Mimi Frank who just recently had a show at the San Diego Art Department;  "The chair represents so many things to us.  We see it as a connection between people and the positions they occupy.  Chairs are place holders. Chairs are settings where we expect to see someone relaxing, resting, thinking, and working.  They imply humanity. We anthropomorphize them.  We make them.  We break them.  We use them in weddings.  They are symbols of authority.  Coronations occur in them and the powerful rule from them.  We can chair an event, or we can “lose our seat”.  We populate chairs with our own meaning and fill them with our own human activity.  When we see several chairs together, we see them in conversation.   Chairs are laden with our own symbolic language.  These chairs tell us a little about Cassiopeia and her regrets, but they are really about our relationships with each other."

The show depicted the chair form reinterpreted in many different gestures using small bronze maquettes. I was especially intrigued by this show for its use of the chair and how playful Mimi could get such a strong material to look.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Pico de Gallo

After much to do about the "lack of windows" in my most recent chicken Favela I have completed a new bordello completo con ventanas. It didn't take long for the hens to figure out how to enter their new space. They seem to be pretty satisfied with the addition of new east facing windows and perching post, I promised them a deck at some point... They promised me hard boiled eggs, if I'm lucky.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

wooden boards

Very cool yet laborious process of making a surfboard out of reclaimed organic material. Beautiful variations in color. 


Saturday, July 2, 2011

The Firefly

So recently I have taken up a new hobby, or should I say I have extended a prior hobby a few rungs up. A few months back I had received a couple of foam blanks from a friend as a gift. These "blanks" are what is generally referred to as the foundation to making a surfboard. They typically are made with a mold injection process that takes shape as a crude block resembling a surfboard, if you blur your eyes hard enough. Most of these blanks have a wooden stringer running the length of itself which gives it tensile strength. 

It has been a dream of mine for years to whittle down my own piece of foam with the intention of riding it someday. Although intimidation to the material and shear fear of fucking up a piece of innocent foam remained a hurdle to conquering my dream. Then it dawned on my one day while sitting in the ocean waiting for a set to approach, I thought back to a video I had seen where some ace surfer caught a wave on a traditional house door and rode it for a bit. This door had no fins, no rocker and was void of any shape that would lend itself workable. Yet this surfer got to his feet and rode it a few yards until the board lost control and dude bra went down. I thought about my own craft as a woodworker/sculptor and about some of the other things I had sculpted out of wood. Surfboard shaping seemed to be just subtractive symmetry, and even if it wasn't symmetrical, the thing, like the door was bound to float. So I decided to give it a shot, I started working the blank about a week ago. 

I had decided to take one of my favorite boards and duplicate it's form with a slight variation in the width and thickness. First, I made what is called a template out of  3/16" masonite. This is an outline of the older board measuring from the center point of the deck to the outer curvature of the form. I simply traced the outline of the old board onto the masonite, cut it out with a jig saw and sanded the edges down. Once I fine tuned the template I placed it onto the blank and scribed an outline onto the bottom of the foam. I used a brick to keep the template secure to the board, I did this on both sides. Making sure things were as symmetrical as they could be I sawed on the outside of the line to create a crude blocky representation of a surfboard, I now had my door. 

Initially I was excited about shaping the entire thing by hand, the old fashion way. This idea was quickly abandon due to the fact that a surform is simply no match for a hand planer when it comes to removing material. Traditions overrated... After a few nervous attempts with the power planer, my passes became less timid as I worked out a rythem to remove the material. Along the way I found that a basic shop vac hooked up to the hand planer worked really well to keep the dust down as the whole process is like being in a snow globe without it. Before I knew it I had taken off at least a 3/4" of material all around and felt it was time to stop and measure some things before I had nothing left. Using a caliper that I fashioned out of some old plywood, I could check the thickness of the board from nose to tail. I didn't mess with the edges since the line that I had drawn was my only visual guide I had to follow. From here I began working with a surform, drywall sanding block and hand plane. The removal of the material was far more slow and deliberate at this stage, but I was able to visualize a more refined form taking place. 

I've recently been working the edges of the board with a drywall sanding block, this has allowed me to remove material slowly and gauge the rail symmetry. I have also been studying up on different bottom contours for speed and stability. I'm feeling confident that this aspect of the shaping will be done fairly soon. I'm looking forward to the next few stages...

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Pico de Gallo

My oldest roommates have recently been relocated to the back 40 due to their negligent manners of cleaning up behind themselves. From the beginning I gave the little birds free range on the more pristine part of backyard, this was primarily to keep them safe from other winged predators. I have a few shade sails set up and a pretty solid fence that keeps most intruders out, or at least it acts as an obstacle until the chicks realize what is happening. I had the sad misfortune of loosing on of my favorite chicks early on, Bernadette Rosebud was picked off by what I assumed was a hawk. She tended to be the one chick that was always by herself, leading the way and not really giving two shits what the others were doing. Ultimately, I believe this is what got her in the end. So a good moral to this story is use the buddy system, always... My remaining 3 chicks, Opera, Gail, and Blanch are the inseparable lezbo sisters that have made it to young adulthood. Watching them grow has been better than any T.V. one might need to survive. But the time has finally come to reclaim my precious lawn back, since the grass needs only so much fertilizer... Not to mention ever time I made my way into the back yard I would return to the house with wet chicken shit somewhere on my sandal. (Gross) It got to the point one day where I finally flipped my lid when I noticed how carless they were with my struggling Plumeria plants in pots. Something had to be done. I gathered enough scrap wood to throw together a make shift coop that I scabbed onto an already dilapidated shed on the property. The environment was a little less than what the chicken where use to, but premium compared to what most chickens get. Either way they looked at me with the, "really, what the fuck is this?!" expression that I have seen chicken give me more than once. I explained to them that it was just time to move on, no hard feeling but every bird needs to fly from the nest at some point. I promised them a larger area when I get around to it but until then this dorm will have to do. They looked back with no response. Typical. Since the eviction they have become a little more friendly with me, every morning I bring them fresh greens and grain to nosh on. They also have more time now to be with themselves as  am not stepping over them constantly. I will keep updating as the Pico de Gallo apartment goes through its renovation process. P.S. still waiting for eggs...

New digs, sparse but technically still free range
The Previous Playground
The "Look"

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

seeings believing

thought this was an interesting use of perspective with a furniture object

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

tres amigas

New work in response to the napkin challenge. Tights, sawdust and ready made funnels.

Friday, February 25, 2011

beauty rest

A few years ago I began taking photos of mattresses throughout my wandering. I was intrigued by the way people would discard their used, tattered, lifeless foam pads that at one time stood as the pinnacle point of the bedroom. The mattress has so many connotations beyond the obvious, so many dreams have been had on the top of these thick pieces of material. There are very few other objects that have had the pleasure of absorbing so many unconscious peoples thoughts merely by existing. Some of the most candid conversations have taken place on the bed. Secrets shared, stories exchanged, mundane end of the day dialog that helps slow the mind before slipping into the darkness of the night. Romantic excursions, one night stands, and affairs have all played a role on the surface of this object.

This idea takes me to a place of discomfort and  further questioning, especially when thinking about how after years of using this object we can so easily throw it out of the home environment and onto the curb. I see these discarded objects taking on another life once removed from the confines of the bedroom and cast into the harshness of the outside. Pathetic and used they start to take on a different form, as the original intention of them is taken out of context. Somehow I wish to pay a respect to these loaded objects so I will continue to document these castaways.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A motor bike is only as cool as the people that are riding it happen to be.

Another bad ass dude with a knack for extreme motorcycle design aptitude. Where was he heading, OB of course...

Mr. Samuel Cohen

So I met this craftsman the other day in Hillcrest, he informed me that he is a 4th generation Russian Jew immigrant who just happens to make hula hoops. What are the odds he knows my great grandmother? Just look at the bend on that hoop, this guy is a natural...


So after a couple weeks of deliberating on what the term "shelter" means to me, I began deconstructing some found ladders I acquired. The process of deconstructing these objects became my form of shelter, it has always been an attraction of mine to take things apart.

  The choice to use the ladder came from my innate attraction to the objects many uses. Eventually the ladders began to take shape in the form of a shell, a reference to the outer shelter that a crab uses to protect oneself. I liked the idea of these ladders coming together to create another inner form, a shape within oneself. They also need one another to support each other, the ladders took on their own persona eventually when fused together. I especially appreciate the way they activate one another. It is my hope that the viewer will visually engage with the object as I have and conjure up their own meaning within the formal qualities present.

Friday, February 18, 2011

studio happening

So after many years of wrestling with unruly dust collection blast gates, the most obvious solution popped in my head today while I monitored the shop. ADD SOME LUBE!!! More benefits of paste wax and why I should keep some in my back pocket at all times.

Friday, February 11, 2011


Im currently working through the process of deconstructing older wooden ladders with the intention to reconfigure them in a more abstract fashion. It is my intention to transform the iconic wooden ladder into something that hopefully provokes the viewer to conjure up associations within themselves in regards to this domestic household object. For me the ladder has always been a continual source of loaded content within the home environment, growing up there was always a need for the ladder and its obvious nature as a tool to gain perspective. Whether that perspective be; to fish a kite from the tree, get onto the roof of a house, hop the neighbors fence, collect something put out of reach intentionally by adults, spy on the next door neighbor, painting the ceiling, repairing the home etc. To me the ladder has become a sense of shelter for the mind, it creates a pathway to the intangible nature of physical and non physical elements. More to come...
Egypt has shown what is possible with a united people and a peaceful progressive revolution. Hooray for a liberated Egypt!!!!!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

studio happenings

a few days ago I was assisting the beginning woodworking class at San Diego State University. While helping a student conquer her very first wooden bowl sculpture, I was shocked by her timidness to the material. I had gone over grain direction in length at this point till I was blue in the face, sketching diagrams , doing demos on scrap wood, showing her other examples from other students. I was beginning to loose my patience then she looked back at me with seemingly lost eyes, I gave it one more chance. I instructed her to "feel" the material, let the wood depict where the gouge should go. She nodded intently but with still a sort of hesitation, I realized at this point I needed to walk away and give her a bit to be with her bowl.

Upon returning to the student she had made quite a bit of progress in a short 15 minutes. I asked her what she did differently to render better results. She let out a quick laugh and told me that she had ,"just felt it." "Honestly, I thought you were some sort of wood hippy when you told me to feel the wood. Like a yogi telling their student to feel the universe or some shit like that. I thought you were full of it. Then I began to carve and within a short time I noticed what wasn't working and what did. So I continued feeling my way around the material, keeping in mind what worked until I noticed I was making progress with ease." I was sort of offended at first when she told me she thought I was full of shit then I realized there was only one way to get a point across to her and that was to let her figure it out, and she did. So not only was I a douche anymore but I helped her figure it out on a "universal level." We both got our way.

Using my own advise I decided to steer away from my initial ideas for shelter and go with my gut, I am beginning work with some found ladders and will see where it goes from there...-V


A motor bike is only as cool as the people that are riding it happen to be. 

Monday, February 7, 2011


Sea Dreams

there is perhaps nothing more comforting in this world to me than being in the ocean. I've posted a video of one of my surfing heros, who happens to be a San Diego local and who has dominated the long board competition scene for over two decades. Joel tudor is not only one of the most influential surfers of our time but he also happens to be an amazing craftsman and creator.

I like thinking of surfing as being a psychological shelter for the mind. Those who surf or have a hobby that can transform your state of being can relate to this past statement. It is a state that takes you from the terrestrial into the unknown. A place where you can clear your mind from anything that may be puzzling you, frustrating you, or impeding your thought process from going in circles. It can also cure sadness, a lonely heart, or the loss of a loved one. This state has the ability to refocus what is truly important in life, the connection between nature and human interaction could be possibly one of the strongest shelters ever built. The best part is it takes no material or matter to build one...



thinking about shelter in the form of something poetic I've included this video on you tube. I especially like the conversations about how this piece comments on or creates a dialog between the local fishermen of the area. For the local fisher catchers of this area, a net serves as a way to make a living. By a simple object that is weaved together for the sole intention of catching perch or whatever is down there, a family can survive. So the net becomes the shelter for those who own one, a shelter for life. So through this sculpture, possibly indirectly there is a homage paid to the locals of the land.


Friday, February 4, 2011

divided thoughts

half horse, half table, half chair, half the story is what you get when hearing only some of the story.