Thursday, December 21, 2017

Cork Chapter Woodturner of the Year.

Chairman's Prize and Wood turner of the Year 2017.

Presented by John Ahern Chairman to Ger Hennessy.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Cork Chapter AGM 2017 Saturday Dec2nd brought a good turnout at the Old School Togher for our AGM.
As a custom we invite a wood turner from outside the area to demonstrate for the morning session, leaving the afternoon for the AGM proper, followed by a social get-together. Some took the festivities to a local tavern later to top off the day.

Our demonstrator this year was Anthony Kelleher… all the way from the Kerry Chapter…He began his demo with a very concise description of what he had planned to do for us. Also he had plenty of examples at hand to give us visuals of every stage which left no one guessing at any point. The theme was all things to do with making music boxes. And it has to be said the topic was new to us and was covered in great depth. Anthony has a clear and methodical style which is essential for imparting knowledge on practical matters. He provided drawings and literature to take away so that we would have a reference later when we got home. Our thanks to Anthony for all his preparation and for making the journey so close to Christmas.

Without delay after a quick tidy up, Reports were read out and adopted. Chairman, Vice Chairman and Committee were elected followed by a lively debate on all current matters important to the Chapter. A list of the 2018 Committee, topics discussed and decisions made, will be available to all members for their own records.
Thanks again to everyone that helped on the day with the usual preparations and tidy up, e.g. ensuring a safe set-up for the visiting turner, adjudicating over the Competition, organising the dining area, camera and video, etc. This is just a brief example of the work required to run workshops every month so take a bow everyone involved. The success of our Chapter is never down to one individual but a team effort. So a big thank you from the Committee, happy Christmas and best wishes to all our members for the New Year and we will see you all refreshed at our first event January 2018.

( A selection of photographs taken at the AGM are shown )
Bowl by Charley McCarthy
Selection of pieces by Chapter Members

Some of the members watching Anthony
Anthony Kelleher


Saturday, September 16, 2017

I apologise to our Chapter members for my failure to keep you all up to date for a number of months past.  I was preparing to move house, then moving house and on top of it all I became ill and spent some time in hospital.  I am, thankfully, slowly but surely recovering.  Thank you to my many friends within the Chapter for your kind concern that was shown in so many different ways.  A special thank you to Chairman, John Ahern, for filling in some stuff on our web page and Facebook page.
Our September workshop was back in Tony Farrell’s workshop and studio.  As usual we were well fed and Tony’s now famous delicious ham was better than ever.  Alice and her team did us proud yet again.
Tony took us through the intricacies of turning a hollow form.  He showed us first some pieces he had made over the years and with his usual straightforward approach was happy to show us a few that didn’t work out quite as well as expected.
He mounted on the lathe a piece of a birch log that was still wet and which he had harvested from the bottom of his own garden.  After getting through the bark and other imperfections the white streamers fairly flew from his tools.  He was soon down to a good cylinder and it was time to remount that on his chuck.  Recommending a set of gripper jaws he was very soon hollowing from the end grain.  Like the great demonstrator that he is we were shown a variety of hollowing tools, from the Woodcut to the Simon Hope small hollowing tool.
After the break, including the judging of the monthly competition, we were back to the workshop where Tony took us through his preferred finishing process.
In the course of that discussion he introduced most of us, who hadn’t heard of it before, to Osmo PolyX-Oil.  It is now much favoured by furniture makers and is available from Pat McDonnell Pints.  There are a number of different finishes and I include a photo of a tin of one of them, as promised.  The price is, I understand, about €25.00 per tin.

For whatever reason I turned up at the demonstration without my camera and I now await copies of photos taken by Alice so that I can share them here, together with detailed results of the competition.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Cork Chapter September 1st 2017

The Cork Chapter committee are encouraging all of our members to enter their work in the monthly competition, a practice that has fallen by the wayside over the past few years. Most if not all of our turners are producing work of a very high standard. These are comments made by Pat Carroll at the August workshop, who also pointed out that the number of pieces in the competition compared to the number of turners in the Chapter was very small.
It can take bravery to display your work and risk appraisal or, even worse , for it not to be noticed. so well done to everyone who seeks to improve their work, by entering competitions and accepting appraisal if it is necessary
The Chapter is always on the lookout for ways to improve it, for instance, more members being prepared to do demos  There is no doubt that there are many members who are more than capable of doing so.  The Committee are members who willingly let their names  go forward for election at the AGM, to oversee the organising and running of the Chapter for the following year, but at times it is disappointing that, except  for the few, the same people are left to clear up the shavings and restore the school as we get it. In future it would be appreciated if some more members gave a hand at this.
John B Ahern Chairman

August Workshop 2017
After a very successful annual Wood Spun Exhibition  and sale which was held in Kinsale our August workshop was held in our HQ in Togher. Making a return visit was guest turner Pat Carroll. Pat gave a wonderful demonstration on woodturning. Before starting his first demo Pat gave a talk on Health and Safety especially matters relating to the danger of dust and the necessity to keep dust protection on even after you have finished sanding , also the danger of dust explosion and flying items from the lathe.
Pat started  first demo. It was a  12ix2inch. platter in elm with a brick design on the side and continuing on to the top of the platter. He started by turning the platter to his desired shape, then marking out the brick shapes and proceeding to finish the bricks using a router again explaining in detail all the procedures he was using.
To finish the platter he first sprayed it with black acrylic paint and then coating it with silver gilt cream.
It was a pleasure to watch Pat complete his first project. We then took a break for refreshments. During this period Pat and our most efficient  Sec. Mick Bouchier judged the competition which this  month was a natural edged bowl .
For the second demo Pat turned a Nick Ager inspired bowl. He emphasised  the importance of sharp tools, as he proceeded to turn the bowl and mark it with a soft leaded pencil explaining the outline of the decorative design he was going to do. Having shaped and marked the bowl he proceeded to decorate it with a series of punches, carving tools, chisels, screws and all sorts of everything. When finished with the decorative tools he proceeded to spray it with black acrylic paint and silver gilt cream as he did in the first demo.
All present agreed that it was a great demo. The finished pieces were a witness to that. Thanks Pat we look forward to seeing you back in Cork in the future.   

John B Ahern

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Woodturners an fishermen

Ballycotton Fishing Trip June 28th 2017

Today Skipper Peter Manning once again hosted the annual Cork Chapter fishing trip in Ballycotton Bay, Peter is also a member of the Chapter.Our boat headed out for the open sea at 9am sharp. A second trip organised for the afternoon was not filled this year.

A beautiful day good companionship and excellent fishing made it a day to rember. Fishing was slow to begin with but as we headed out to open sea we all started to catch an abundance of fish. The catch mainly consisted of mackerel pollack wrasse pouting and geunarll. Peter strictly ensured that all the smalls were returned to the sea in good condition. He had  as always had a plentiful supply of tea and coffee.

After a great days fishing a lovely lunch was enjoyed overlooking Ballycotton pier and island. A great day was had by all. 

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

July 2017 Workshop

The July workshop was home-based in Kieran Higgin's in Skibbereen. As always, Kieran was well-prepared for the fine audience that attended. Unusually for Kieran, he turned a platter in yew compared to his usual medium of Bog Oak. He used a piece of yew that was originally destined for the fire heap. Kieran then proceed to turn a natural-edged platter. As he proceeded, he explained in great detail his method, the tools he used, and why he used those tools. 

After the break, for tea, coffee and fine food, Brendan Griffin and Tony Farrell announced the winners of the competition. I would like to thank Tony and Brendan for volunteering for judging same. 

When we resumed, Kieran finished his project, which as always was excellent. The event finished with a general discussion on wood turning.It was indeed a most enjoyable day.

John B. Ahern.  

Setting Up the Blank
Finished Natural Edged Platter
Kieran at work
Brendan Griffin, Gerry Twomey and Tony Farrell
Brendan, Hugh Garrett and Tony
Brendan, John O Shea and Tony

Best Wishes to Michael Pattwell

All members of the Cork Chapter IWG wish Michael a speedy recovery and are looking forward to seeing him up and about soon.

Monday, April 3, 2017

When the Chapter Committee Members attend such events as the I.W.G. National Seminar they do so for their own pleasure and education of course but always have in mind that a demonstrator for upcoming events might be found.  That is how we sourced the demonstrators for the past few years and that is where we met Richard Kennedy.  Richard was our demonstrator for the Annual Chapter Seminar and the Master class held in Togher and at Tony Farrell’s workshop over the last weekend, 1st and 2nd April, 2017.

This was no April Fools Day because the 35 people who attended the seminar were treated to a wonderful display of craftsmanship from a consummate woodturner but who is really a top-class artist.  Over the day he took us through three separate items.

The first was a hollow form with a very small opening that he completed using the Simon Hope hollowing-jig.  Richard used a number of different hollowing tools on the jig and showed us clearly the versatility of this great piece of equipment.  It transpires that one or two members are already using the equipment and if anybody is interested in exploring it further contact John Ahern, our Chairman, who has been using it for the last couple of years.  Kieran Higgins has his own version of the equipment that is bigger and stronger and to which he has added various “extras”.

For his next piece Richard hollowed out a small bowl again but on this one he drew in straight lines making different shaped ‘boxes’ on the outside.  Then he textured some of the ‘boxes’ and applied gold leaf to others before finishing the whole lot off with spray-on sanding sealer and spray-on lacquer. 

For the last half-hour of the day Richard mounted a length of ash on the lathe and produced a most-pleasing-shaped candlestick.

Some of the attendance at the Seminar
Richard with his three projects
Richard's finished pieces
There was an open competition, judged by Richard Kennedy.  1st, with a bowl, John O'Shea, 2nd with an ornamental box on a pedestal, David Lee and 3rd with a matching pair of candlesticks, Peter Manning.

We are very grateful to the 37th Cork (Togher) Scout Group for use of the hall.

Richard Kennedy explains why he chose John O'Shea's bowl for 1st place
Competition winners, From left, Peter Manning (3rd), John O'Shea (1st) and David Lee (2nd)
The 3 winning exhibits.  From left: 1st, John O'Shea, 2nd David Lee and 3rdPeter Manning
On the following day at Tony Farrell’s the sheer artistry of Richard Kennedy was even more obvious as he took the 15 members who attended the Master class through the intricacies of turning a small thin-walled bowl, drawing the pattern of a tree on it and then proceeding to cut away much of one side of the bowl.   For this he used a Dremel with a couple of different cutters.  This left the tree on one side of the bowl, which was then textured and outlined.  For outlining it he used a pyrography machine, so that the tree stood out in a sort of silhouette and for texturing most people used the Dremel again and a variety of different burr tips. 

There were dusty Dremels resurrected from workshops where they had hitherto done very little work but that from now on may prove to be very useful indeed. 

At the end of the workshop every participant took home what can only be considered a work of art.  One unfortunate left his “masterpiece” loose on the back seat of his car where something heavy fell on it and broke it irretrievably into several pieces.

Special mention has to be made of Tony Farrell who proved once again to be the perfect host.  Thanks too to Alice and her team for the catering.  The beautiful lunch served – as we have come to expect there – was probably worth at least as much, if it had been served in a restaurant, as the whole day cost.

We were Richard Kennedy’s first Master class but I know it won’t be his last.  He is a really good instructor, his skills and his imagination are second to none and those of us who interacted with him over the couple of days are very proud to regard him as a friend.  Thank you Richard.

There is much to be seen in the Internet about Richard and the following links will get you there. or Richard Kennedy WoodArt.

Twitter - @bolethegallery

For those holidaying in Scotland – or even the North of England – a visit to beautiful Knapdale in Argyll is strongly recommended.

Busy at the Master Class

The attendees at the Master Class.

Monday, March 6, 2017

We in the Cork Chapter are hugely proud of our member, Gerard Hennessy, who has had one of his pieces, Deliverance, selected by the jury for inclusion in the 2017 American Association of Woodturners AAW member exhibition, Waves of Grain. 

The  jurors were Michael Wilkerson, Associate Professor and Chair of the Kansas City Art Institute's sculpture program; professional artist and turner Hayley Smith and collector and turner Mark Wollschlager.  Using a blind jurying process, they selected 18 out of the 60 pieces submitted, evaluating them in four key areas:  aesthetic appeal, originality, interpretation of the theme, and craftsmanship.

The exhibition will premiere at the 2017 AAW International Woodturning Symposium, June 22-25, then travel to the AAW Gallery of Wood Art for display September 10-December 31.

Friday, January 6, 2017

There was much interest in my offer to give away old woodturning magazines. Thank you. One member was quick off the mark and I shall give them to him. He will bring any he doesn't want to the next workshop at Pádraigh Mac an Fheallaigh's for anybody else who wants some.
I have taken down the original post.