Category Archives: Arts & Crafts

Building a Custom Stained Glass Mold with G/5

By Tom Pawlak

A few years back Mary, my better half, suggested I make a stained glass lamp for our den at home. There are molds commercially available for making glass lampshades. They hold glass pieces in position in the desired curved shape until the soldering process is complete. Unfortunately, the shape I wanted was not available. I wanted something similar in size and shape to the fabric-covered lamp shade in the den. In the end, I decided to make a custom mold. Continue reading

Outdoor Sculpture Sculptor

By Mike Barker

Bill Wood has been making sculpture since high school. He has a degree in Art from Ottawa University, Ottawa, Kansas and attended the Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, Missouri. His work has been featured in shows from Connecticut to Key West and as far west as Topeka Kansas. Continue reading

Making Custom Wastebaskets

By Tom Pawlak

I don’t know about you, but I have problems finding wastebaskets that fit the spaces I have in mind. The baskets are either way too small or a bit too large for the opening. It happened at a previous house we lived in and it happened again in our current home. My solution was to make my own baskets with 4 to 6mm (3 16″ to 1 4″ thick) plywood sealed with and glued together with WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy. Continue reading

The Artistador

Claudia Toutain-Dorbec is a multi-media artist living in northern New Mexico. The Downey Gallery in Santa Fe asked Claudia to create a life-size sculpture in preparation for the city’s 400th birthday celebration which began Labor Day weekend 2009, and runs for a year. She created the Artistador, a conquistador who is also an artist, seeking his treasure in art. He stands with his arm extended pointing at his treasure, with brushes in hand, and a palette at his feet. The sculpture, displayed on the Downey Gallery’s roof, had to be lightweight, but strong enough to withstand high winds and all kinds of severe weather. Continue reading

Marquetry Made Easy

By Al Witham

There is a simple way for those of us who may be “artistically challenged” to produce inlaid furniture, jewelry boxes, canoe decks, trays, etc. with a modest investment in equipment and materials, in a reasonable period of time, and with eye-pleasing results. I have no formal training in making inlays, but have found a method which works for me. I showed this method to a friend who is a shop teacher; he now has students as young as ten incorporating it into their school projects with excellent results. My method is adaptable, user-friendly within limits and forgiving of minor cutting errors. Even novices can produce great looking marquetry. Continue reading

The Lighthouse Project

By Tom Pawlak

Bob, my brother-in-law, has a beautiful yard that he has set in a nautical theme. He had been looking at lighthouse plans and asked if I was interested in helping build one with WEST SYSTEM® epoxy. All the plans that he looked at were for flat paneled six or eight-sided lighthouses built with plywood. I was interested in a project that was a bit more challenging and unique, so I suggested we build a stripped plank version. That way the tower could be round and tapered like many of the popular lighthouses around the world and it would differ from the flat-sided variety often seen in people’s yards. Bob liked the idea, so he went online and found photos of lighthouses that he liked. In the end, we based our design on Marblehead lighthouse located on the southwestern shore of Lake Erie. Continue reading

Summer in the City

By Jerry Briggs

Each year The Museum of Modern Art and P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center conduct what is known as the P.S.1 / MOMA Young Architects Program. The competitors vie for the opportunity to build a temporary architectural project in the 17,000 square foot outdoor galleries of P.S.1 in Queens, New York. The structure serves as a venue for the popular outdoor music series, “Warm Up” which runs from June though September each year and boasts attendance in excess of 100,000 visitors per season. Continue reading

Artist Christopher Tully

Artist Christopher Tully does two unusual things with epoxy in his work. He creates large clay relief scenes with lots of detail made up of many tiles. After they are bisque fired he brushes on epoxy and heats them with a torch so the epoxy penetrates deeply into the porous clay. This creates an extremely strong surface that still has great detail. He then applies a primer and paints it with acrylics and a clear coat. Continue reading

Storm the Castle

By Tom Pawlak

A while back, my nephew Robbie, about 15 years old at the time, asked for help building a trebuchet (a form of catapult) for an upcoming Science Olympiad competition that his school was involved in. He had located a nice set of plans online that were based on a lattice-type structure using hardwoods. The website offered a fairly detailed plan and included project photos to help during the build. Continue reading