Custom made Furniture, made to order

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mp wrote:

Geeze - I didn't think the OP was that bad. And I'm one who has a keen appreciation for the snide-r side of life...
--

-Mike-
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I am not a professional cabinetmaker like many of the guys in this newsgroup (but I wish I were!), so my opinion is closer the the aesthetics side I would think.
I do not normally look at sites such as the one the original poster plunked out here but in light of the threads you posted, mp, I just had to go out and look at it.
I have to agree with the men that know what's going on: beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I actually see nothing the matter with what this guy is making and selling. You may not like it but I can think of many people off the top of my head that would think about some of the items he shows on his site.
Aesthetics itself is in the eye of the beholder. If the eye of the beholder is tainted, well, then there is nothing we can do about that now, is there?
I would have to agree that you come across as myopic and snobbish as well as a few other adjectives. What you are saying is as long as you think the item looks good (to you!), that's all that matters. What a crock of bull. I have seen things that look pretty good from a distance but when you really look at the piece of garbage, it isn't worth the space it takes up.
My bet is that your photographs don't hold a candle to, say, Ansel Adams. Should we say yours are butt-ugly and you need to do something about it? Geesh.
The only hting I see wrong with what the original poster did was trying to peddle his ware here on the REC--not what he was selling.
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That was intentional, and you're missing the point of my post entirely.
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And what is beholden is influenced by other factors. Such as culture and especially education in the visual arts.
If someone finds their black velvet Elvis painting beautiful, does that make it art?
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I understand and agree with what your saying in principle. However, for many of us the glue,clamps,sawblades,and the work involved are priceless when compared to the end product. One exception to this is if end product is a gift or a customers piece, then making THEM happy is number one. Speaking of aesthetics, which finish gives walnut its best appearance? Oil finish, shellac, varnish, poly, or latex paint? Is it ok to stain walnut?
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Best? I'd suggest you consider the look of the item and the environment it's going to be placed in.
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Your comments remind me a lot of Bob Flexnor's Book "Understanding Wood Finishes". THere are a couple of serious errors--his instructions for using lye are dangerous (Never dissolve lye in hot water or in a glass container) and he omits discussion of the dangers of using potassium dichromate, (a strong oxidiser and powerful human carcinogen) but it IS otherwise an excellent book.
He includes numerous photos of wood finished two different ways. Invariably, the way he PREFERS looks inferior to me, sometimes to the point of being butt ugly.
As you noted, there is no accounting for taste. We are as unable to account for yours, as you are to ours.
BTW, I have noted that the same mistake is often made in guides to photography. Rather than just pointing out how certain techniques affect the image, technically or esthetically the authors often go on to declare one to be 'better' than the other.
--

FF

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Disclaimer - I can vouch that we're not related, nor do we own shares in each other's companies.

There aren't too many good books like his. Jeff Jewitt's new book (Taunton's Complete Illustrated Guide to Finishing) is also reported to be excellent, but I haven't seen it yet.

One thing that's a challenge in photography is to reproduce a three dimensional image on an offset press. Not only accurately reproducing the colours, but also the special depth and luminance of a good wood finish. A lot of the subtlety and nuance is lost in the process, and what you see in the book is only a hint of what the actual finish would look like, butt ugly or otherwise.

I'm afraid that a lot of visual arts instruction these days is just that, a teacher espousing their personal biases as dogma and grading students on how well they imitate the teacher, rather than opening up a students eyes and teaching them to think and feel for themselves.
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I have it, it is. <G>
Barry
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Oh great, first we had a self proclaimed master woodworker now a self proclaimed aesthetics cop.
There's hacks in any profession. Maybe you are one maybe not, but your professional bedside manner is butt ugly which leads me to believe the former..
--
Mike G.
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Thank you for the self-proclamations. That was very sweet of you.
But seriously, many woodworkers on this group are fully capable of building strong, solid, nicely built and nicely finished items. In fact, just as good and in some cases better than what you can buy commercially. What separates the two groups, more than any other factor, is aesthics and design.
This is an area that is largely overlooked by most woodworkers, who instead tend to focus more on construction techniques and materials, whereas most commercial furniture's primary focus is on aesthics and design. To me a master woodworker is someone who does both well. The appeal of a Maloof chair isn't the species of wood used or his joinery methods. He can command $25k per item and his customers will pay that for a chair that's screwed together simply because it's beautiful.
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Hey Duane, If you need some one to build that custom made furniture for you, let me know.

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