Wednesday 4 November 2015

I Want That In My House!

So another big gap in blogging since the Dalek business...  Partly because after the verrrrry hectic month which resulted from the Dalek brief leaving me wanting a break, but also partly because I have a major sculpture commission on at the moment, though the good news there is that it is resulting in the mass-build of about a dozen concept models.  I'm not going to put anything about that project up just yet, until I have some finished models to show for it, so instead, a new feature: 

I Want That In My House!

I don't much go in for wishlists, as a rule; but occasionally I'll see something which might be useful, even desirable, and which is entirely out of reach.  Particularly as I don't have a studio or even a spare room to work in, and I also don't have a limitless pot of cash for projects (as my endless reliance on Poundland tat and old model kits will attest).  Nevertheless, for the sake of something to post:

National Railway Museum, York 

Alright, I want this to run around the outside of the house... if I had a big house.  And Grounds rather than a postage stamp back garden in an area notorious for metal theft.  But what sort of self respecting railway enthusiast wouldn't want a miniature railway?  This is the Deltic (powered I believe by a motorbike engine) on the recently-reopened miniature railway at the museum.

And above is the archives; one of my biggest problems with the sort of art I do is storage, as I don't have any shelving space, so every model ends up being binned, dismantled, or boxed up after use, the 'saved' models eventually getting ground to bits or damaged by damp in the loft, which since the foster kids moved in seems to be the only surface not covered in teddy bears and books about dogs called Spot.  And that's before even getting to the issue of storing photographic prints, research materials and books... Oh to have a space to properly archive and display old work. 

Speaking of archiving, this is inside a Travelling Post Office train.  Right now I'm self employed as a photographer, and also properly employed in another job (my record was having three 'proper' jobs alongside the photography).  Again, now that the box room which was the office is now a bedroom, all the paperwork is stored in old metal filing cabinets liberated from the skip in an old job, and stored inconveniently under the stairs.  Oh to have a lovely wooden shelf, with lots of pigeon holes for storing invoices, receipts etc... Hell, the TPO above would make a lovely office and workshop anyway.

And as with the Deltic, what sort of railway enthusiast model-maker wouldn't want a railway on the dining room table?  There is just something wonderful about this, an O-gauge layout built onto a properly finished, craftsman-quality table for the training of signalmen.

OK so its a bit Wallace and Grommit, but that's part of the charm.  

National Slate Museum, Llanberis, Wales

Working in the shed?  Family want to contact you?

Speaking of contact, what a nice old phone; having to wind the handle before contacting an operator, makes the whole answering of the inevitable PPI company or speaking to relatives more of an event.  And the bells are humorously prone to comment and innuendo.

Back to the 'archiving old work' problem again with this one, but a lovely set of drawers and cupboards...

...and terrific organisation in a workshop.  My minor OCD when it comes to sorting out nails and screws would have a field-day with this.

Whilst on the subject of workshops, a proper ancient wooden bench, and a vice which looks like it weighs half a ton.

Tools scattered in random boxes and cupboards?  Not any more, not with a ridiculously complex tool rack on the wall.

And I couldn't resist a shot of the pattern-store.  Again, shelves full of lovely hand-made components.  They may or may not ever be used again, but are such lovely objects in their own right, and each the result of hours of patient craftsmanship.

Ingrow Loco, West Yorkshire

OK so this definitely falls into the 'nice but essentially useless object' category, as I cannot think of much use for this shunting-signal beyond its original purpose in a goods yard, but isn't it a lovely bit of kit?  Signal arm, lamp, levers, all in wonderful cast iron.  Maybe in the dream-mansion or workshop it could be used to let relatives know if you're locked away building things in the shed... or perhaps a gloriously over the top way of assuring people the bathroom is locked and in use.

Pieces for Places, Barmouth, Wales

The ultimate in useless but wonderful objects; I don't know if this is even for sale in this shop of very have-able designer goods, but good grief, isn't it magnificent?  A massive chandelier made from reclaimed railway signal lights.

If I had a massive house and a fortune, that would be hanging about the stairs in the palatial hallway.

Right, I think I've got all that dreaming and wishful thinking out of my system for a bit.  Normal service, i.e bodging slightly suspect-quality models out of smashed airfix kits and cheap stationary products, will resume shortly.

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