Sunday, January 16, 2011

Mother of Pearl




After a little searching, native Tasmanian green-lipped abalone shell for mother of pearl (a stunning material used for the pearl slide and pearl eyes on the frog of a bow) has been sourced. Saturday saw us pile the kids in the car and take a drive up the river in search of our local neighbourhood abalone diver.

On a stunning vineyard on the West Tamar we found several piles of 'stink' shells, as named by the kids, and I collected a box full. In my enthusiasm, the box was overfilled and unshuttable so the drive home was a little aromatic, but well worth it, as the shells cleaned up beautifully.




Its great to have a local Tasmanian material to use in my bow making. Most of the other exotic supplies - pernambuco, mammoth bone, ebony etc must be sourced from the far corners of the Earth.

Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnwhite/sets/72157594369988268/

Mmm, green lipped abalone, looks disgusting, tastes delicious!

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Cello Bow No.2



This is my new cello bow. Cello bow No.2, we shall call it, as this is my second bow and the first I have completed since returning from France last May. The process of 'tooling up' and securing supplies has been almost excruciatingly slow, one of the disadavantages of living on an island at the bottom of the Earth far from European and Brazilian suppliers. Cello bow No.2 is made from a beautiful Pernambuco stick, a gift from Lyon archetier, Sylvain Bigot. I was lucky enough to meet Sylvain in his atelier in Lyon on my travels last year, having received a recommendation to him from Jean-Luc Tauziede, my bow making Master and mentor.

Sylvain's workshop is on the second floor of a wonderful building in the smart shopping district of Lyon. To gain entry you must buzz the bell next to his nameplate at street level. The entrance is adorned with the typical white on blue street number, the brass nameplates of the occupants, wooden doors and ornate carvings in the stone architrave. Once access is given to the building you ascend the stairs to this wonderful workspace.


Sylvain gave me a very warm welcome and much invaluable advice and knowledge. He sent me away with much encouragement and the gift of this beautiful pernambuco stick so I could continue my bowmaking journey. Merci Sylvain!