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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Ta Da!!!

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Laura and I have decided on the final drawing for the Left Coast Eisteddfod Lovespoon and here it is!

We very much hope that you like what you see and that you will be inspired to donate to the cause! Remember - every dollar donated to the Left Coast Eisteddfod can translate to a chance to win this spoon!
This week we both wanted to write sections of the blog, so I am writing in regular font and Laura is in italic... a clear way to know who is saying what and sort of a symbolic way of summing up the main fund-raising purpose of this spoon! We do urge you to become involved with the Eisteddfod, either as a donor or as a participant in one of the many on-line and on-site competitions!
Both Laura and I have very much enjoyed the challenge of designing this year's spoon together and are now looking forward to figuring out how the hell the two of us will carve it! Given that we live several thousand kilometres away from each other, getting all this sorted out will be a bit of a feat! But right now, it is important to explain what this particular spoon is all about and so I'll turn things over to Laura! - Dave

When I talk with people about Welsh Lovespoons, I always emphasize that one of the most important things is the message it sends - the general "rule" is, its symbolism must be meaningful to both the giver and the recipient. So, while it's ideal to have a specific recipient in mind when we design a spoon, we don't always have that. In the case of this Left Coast Eisteddfod spoon, we would assume the recipient will share an interest in Americymru's idea "for Americans (and others!) of Welsh descent to celebrate their heritage and deepen their knowledge of the rich fund of Welsh History, Folklore and Legend." Throughout the design process, we've been thinking of this, along with the theme of "two" and the aim to represent both carvers, and our cooperation. Dave sent over a few last changes - some leaves to go with the daffodils, a correction from under to over in some of the weaving at the top, and an adjustment to the top of the knotwork to better match the taper of the spoon, and the angles of the vines above. When I look at the design now, I feel like we've accomplished exactly what we intended, and the design finally feels complete. I see Welsh and American heritage represented, I see parts that are very "Dave" and parts that are very "Laura", and, in the daffodils, I see a blend of both of us, and will see it even more when each of us carves one. And throughout the process, I know I really enjoyed the back-and-forth consideration and inspiration in the collaborative design process. And now there are the next steps!

We've already been discussing wood selection. We considered some maple Dave had, and some myrtle I had, but neither seemed quite right. Then, Dave suggested some birch he has. I have never carved in birch, but Dave's description of it sounds like it is wonderful to carve! I believe the word that really sold me was "buttery" - which is one of the biggest things a carver ever wants in wood. It also looks like it has a lovely, glowing color to it, that would suit our design beautifully. I think we may have selected our wood! The next step, I suppose, will be transferring the design to the wood, in its proper scale. We have been thinking about 17" for the length of the spoon: a manageable size for drawing, and for shipping. And then, on to the cutting! How do two people cut out a design? do we really need to split that step? Hmmmm.... I wonder what Dave thinks! - Laura

Dave thinks the guy with the birch and the saw gets to do the cutting!
Laura thinks that's fabulous! I suspect Dave is far superior at sawing.

Below, I'll attach a series of the design pictures, as we thought it might be interesting to see the progression all in one place... With a darkened version of the final design at the end

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