I’m really a creature of habit in many ways. I like to be at “work” in the studio by 7am but most days I go down the street to the river to check it out and have a cup of coffee at the bait house. Here in Homosassa, FL, we live a relaxed atmosphere and enjoy our beautiful natural environment around us. Sometimes, I may even meet up with my buddies as we watch the boats go by, the fish jump, birds fly and river waltz.
Once I get back into the studio, I realize that I can’t use A/C because of the welding fumes, so its rarely a comfortable temp. What I do have to combat that is five fans of various sizes. This helps to get the fumes out and to make it cooler.
I normally have several projects in progress, so I usually chose one that I’m inspired to work on for a few hours, then move on to the next. I like doing it that way because it gives me time to think about how I want to proceed and many times plans change.
Early in the day, I like to do my hammering as it might take 2000-3000 strikes with a hammer to shape a 32″ Snapper, and thats with a 4 oz. ball peen hammer. This hammer has a longer handle, so its mostly wrist movement and not so much the whole arm moving to swing the hammer. I have maybe 30 different hammers that i use to create a Copper Sculpture. Most look like an everyday hammer but some are custom made for specific parts of a Big Fish Sculpture because some hammering is done from inside the body of a fish. My 4oz. ball peen hammer is not a heavy hammer, but when you work up to it you can hammer for several hours with some short breaks. During those breaks you can find me cutting out other shape’s for various commissioned projects.
As I have a connection with each piece I create, I really never think about how much something will cost when it’s finished. It is more important that each piece of art fit the size and space that I am creating for. If there is a budget to work with, then I creatively plan for the artwork. I do not allow my artwork to become restrictive in size and depth of work. Money and and creating art do not go hand in hand, as I love what I do. You can see this when the Copper Sculpture is placed in it’s intended space.
I’m such a lucky guy to have a lifestyle here in Homosassa, FL and enjoy my coffee, fans & hammers.