This is my baby Cooper modeling my final sample, he is very sleepy as it is 6am.
I thought placing the medal in this way gives a very strong message.
Hitting home that the meat on your plate had a life and character, it felt pain and fear. It might have been a mother, it was definitely a son or daughter.
10,000 dogs are killed for a celebration. The world goes mad.
8 Billion Cows, Sheep, Hens, Ducks and Pigs are killed. That is just life.
I was horrified at the stats I found out.
8 Billion Animals are Killed for Food Every Year in the UK!
I decided to narrow down my thoughts to just one act of violence against one specific animal. I also decided there was no point in trying to portray a positive side, there is no positive side to killing animals.
The Yulin Dog Meat Festival
This celebrating of the summer solstice goes on every year, but this year there seemed to be more of an outcry than before.
There were petitions to ban it, calls for rescuing the dogs and generally people losing their minds because some poor wee dogs were being killed and eaten. In the west dogs are seen as pets or ‘man’s best friend’, we are horrified that someone would kill our pets and have them for dinner. But we do it to pigs, cows and sheep without a moments thought.
As my designs developed I shaped the wood, drilled it and burnt it.
I experimented with writing, stamping and burning it into the wood, always being aware of how I would achieve this effect in wax.
I spoke with Roddy at the general workshop about a wax pour and he was good enough to let me do it the same day.
The wax is super sticky and difficult to work with. While sawing it in to the steak shape, it seems to self-heal! I think the heat generated by the blade and the stickiness of the wax make a perfect storm.
Continuing my use of recycled and biodegradable products, I went off to the general workshop to pick up scrap wood.
Using the bandsaw I cut out circles to start working with them.
I wanted to carve the wood but this scrap wood is Birch ply, layers of wood stuck together. As soon as i carve too deep I am in a different type of wood.
We have been given our new brief, to design for the Craft and Design Awards.
There were several different categories, I have chosen to design for the medal section of the awards. The brief really speaks to me as it is about the treatment of animals or ‘man’s relationship with animals’ to quote the brief. Why it is ‘man’s relationship’ I have no idea.
I started trying to look at a positive and negative situation to balance the medal design, however, I found it hard to find a positive.
We exploit animals in almost every aspect of life.
I continued on with my paper/flour mixture, wrapping it round wire, coating sandpaper with it….
I finally think I might be getting somewhere with it, I introduced a vegetable based ink to the mixture to add colour, it didn’t mix through smoothly. Instead, it gave a marble effect.
the end result is really interesting, very fragile and very organic. for once, organic is not the effect i am after. I want to draw a similar piece in Rhino using square interlinking.
I got in touch with a few companies who make bio-degradable 3D printing flex, they agreed to send me some samples. While I am waiting on this arriving I have been thinking about the use of materials for samples and how wasteful we are, as artists/jewellers shouldn’t we be responsible for where our materials come from and where they end up?
I started looking at the alternatives to glue, I thought making paper samples would be easy but I was wrong. Most glues are toxic to ourselves or aquatic life, PVA is ok as long as it isn’t burnt, but is that good enough?
Doing some research I discovered flour and water used to be used a very basic glue, also sugar water can be used. So I started to experiment with flour/icing sugar and water.
I baked it….
Made paper mache with it…
and dipped material in to the mixture name a few….
As our first project kicks off 3rd year at DJCAD we have to research a contemporary jeweller. This is who I chose.
The internet is making the world a smaller place, we can tweet or email our peers and heroes without any problems. Where doors were once closed, we can now make connections with anyone with the click of a few keys.
There are a couple of points I feel very strongly about around this subject.
One is that I don’t understand how people can love one animal and eat another, but the point I want to talk about is dog owners who have no concern for other animals. The example I will use is something I witnessed at the Riverside Nature Reserve. During the summer months, dog walkers are asked to keep their dogs on a lead as there are ground nesting birds. People just let their dogs run free without a care for the damage they are doing.
Two is the amount of roadkill I see on the road into the Nature Reserve, people literally running over wildlife on their way to exercise their pet. Why can’t they see the hypocrisy in this? Why does one life matter more? I have heard it so many times from vegetarians and supposed animal lovers, ‘oh! I hate cats’ or ‘I am a dog person’ or ‘why would you keep a rat as a pet, they are vermin!’
Why can’t we be animal lovers? Adore and cherish all animals regardless of fur, cuteness or scales? I am a saver of wasps, spiders and flies, I catch and release anything I can, I pick bumble bees off the ground to stop them getting squashed. I believe all of these creatures have a right to live and who am I to make the decision to end another creatures life?
So yet again I am posting about the dead things I find.
This is the remains of a rabbit found at the nature reserve in Dundee. Its pelvic area was the only thing remaining intact.