Re: How Do You Stay On Track During A Project (to McQualude)

McQualude wrote:

snip

Is Gottshall's book still available? Would like to check out his 56 rules of design. Sounds like a valuable reference book.
You might check out Graham Blackburn's "Furniture by Design" at www.blackburnbooks.com/Titles/Books.html snip

Sure looks like Mr. Hein was also influenced by James Krenov. His cabinets have many Krenovian elements and the same "look and feel"

The types of pieces that come to my mind when I hear or read the term Studio Furniture are orange carrot legs on a slanted topped table or a large plaster four drawer Venus or stuff done by Garry/Gary Knox Bennett. Back in the 60s I saw, at least temporarily, a lot of weird furniture in odd colors and they were boring then and still are - even if you call them Studio Furniture and paint them day-glo orange (formerly international orange)..
I think most of the Art Nouveau furniture did a much better job of combining art and functional furniture
I'm starting to think the term has more to do with the idea of stuff designed,made and finished by one person or perhaps two people. If that's the case, the Shakers were the most prolific Stufio Furniture makers and most in this group just need to rename "the shop" "the studio" to qualify as Studio Furniturists. The latter term avoids the moniker "artist", or for the affectatious (sp?) - "artiste".
Maybe the Studio Furniture Movement is merely a marketing technique, intended to promote, and maybe preserve, the small furniture makers. If that is so then more power to it.
(refering to James Krenov)

You're right.

Ya gotta start somehere and he's as good as any to use as a starting point to developing your own style. A good teacher inspires rather than imposes. Krenov inspires.

That goes back to an earlier question I posed - the process.
It seems you're approach is linear - start at A, the design, and proceed through B, C, D ... and you end up with the piece of furniture you "saw" at the end of making the plans/drawings. Everything's defined and "done" before the first board is cut.
For me, it's an iterative, evolutionary thing which adapts along the way. A particular board's grain which wasn't noticeable appears when sanded or scraped and that get's me looking for more of that grain or pattern in my pile of wood. A screw up, while considering fixes, becomes a valuable addition to the overall look and function of the piece (or not).
You're approach requires far more knowledge of far more variables/parameters/options than I'm even aware of, let alone the skills to execute.
But surely "telling yourself 'no' when you think 'what if'" must have some exceptions. I personally don't think that anyone can foresee ALL the options at the "scaled drawings" step in the process of making furniture.
And that get's back to "How to Stay On Track During a Project".
Maybe it's asking and answering some basic questions: - will this idea compromise the function of the piece? - will this option make other operations much more complicated and/or difficult (ie. require cope and stick for the joinery)? - will this option fit in or fight with what's around it? - how will this option play with light? Shadows in the right place can be nice. Eased, chamfered or rounded over edges can help the eye flow around the piece. - do I have the skills and tools to do this? (This one's tough to answer. If you don't have the skills or tools, do you get the tools and try learning the skills in this project or abandon that option forever and never have the need to learn that particular skill?) - will the wood permit this option to be done? - do I have the time to do this or the time to make another part if it doesn't work the way I'd thought it might? - will this make finishing the piece a real PITA? - does this feel right?
Then again ...
babble mode OFF
charlie b
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Interesting thread. My approach varies with the project. On commercial projects; I decide, before I start, what I am going to do, and then just do it. This is dictated by the customer and price quoted. I correct mistakes; otherwise the process is decided in advance. For personal projects, the process is either the same or starts with only very general "requirements" and is adapted/adjusted along the way.
When I built my bench; I detailed the major parts (vises, min/max dimensions, height) in advance and then just worked with the wood on hand to build the final product. I am a firm believer in knowing what I am going to build, before I start; and "selecting" the wood to be used, before any cutting starts.
--
Alan Bierbaum

Web Site: http://www.calanb.com
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Amazon says out of print, but 6 available used...
<(Amazon.com product link shortened)58135439 /sr=1-5/ref=sr_1_5/002-6641520-4356020?v=glance&s=books>
djb
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have not got it." -- G.B. Shaw
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charlieb spaketh...

thanks, I'll take a look

LOL! Stop, or you'll have us all in the society pages.

Bingo. Maybe it's just about some guy who convinces everyone his furniture is 'in' and manages to sell it to society's elite.

Thanks, but you give me too much credit. I have yet to draw plans for a piece of furniture, a sketch is usually sufficient. I work out the major details and proportions in my sketches and the minor details on the fly. After the first piece, I make a detail drawing so that if I ever want to make another it will be easier.

No, it's the same process, perhaps I go through the process consciously, while you are moving through the process subconsciously.

No, that's why our new dining room table is 2" shorter and 1/2" narrower than planned! It now has a bullnose edge rather than the nice long bevel I wanted. The tapered legs are ~1 13/16 rather than the planned 2".
--
McQualude

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McQualude spaketh...

FYI, to anyone interested, Amazon.com has some great deals on this book.
--
McQualude

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Skill without imagination is craftsmanship and gives us many useful objects such as wickerwork picnic baskets. Imagination without skill gives us modern art. -- Tom Stoppard
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