Jump to content
Maestronet Forums

Stephen Faulk

  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by Stephen Faulk

  1. I was hardly being serious, but I think science is closer to art than many scientists imagine. Many of my friends are real bad ass scientists and they all write, make music or do some kind of art or film making etc. - What I meant to convey is that we are all too complicated to be compartmentalized even though we specialize in different things. In some ways making a body of work in some art field is like using scientific method, and vice versa, in a loose way. We use similar processes to get different results and work products. There are for example a lot of scientific choices and underpinnings to music composing. And even drawing is subject to optical laws and concepts, these don't present themselves on the surface but they are there if you look for them. I have asked some scientists why they went about conducting an experiment in a certain order of execution when aonther order would have worked also and it becomes a style issue, like there is an aesthetic to a certain working method that is preferred because it has better style, is more 'artistic' I remember a molecular biologist friend working on a crystalography experiment at the Synchrotron in Berkeley and he had me come over to look at the results, he was jazzed about the look and visual aesthetic of the result almost as much as the hard data it rendered. The art part of the brain stays engaged. But I digress. Mostly scientists are more fun to drink beer with than artists because the gossip is funnier.
  2. Ask James about the research he did when he mounted the ebony lines into the back of his Gasparo viola copy. On ebony and ebonizing, furniture makers did a lot of ebonizing because they wanted vast expanses of wood too look like ebony. Or they wanted details like finials, knobs, trim, frames to look like ebony, but ebony was too difficult to work into these turned shapes. And in some cases maybe they just plain wanted the item to be black for the sake of black being a design element and not imitative of ebony. Smaller decorative items and objects of art like inlaid boxes were probably where real ebony was employed most. You can see it in the work of fine objects very far back even to the Moorish occupation times. There was ebony about. It also looks like Ivory may have been a favored material for nuts early on, but perhaps ebony was a second choice?
  3. I'm just sticking a little fun back at the scientists who always give me doo-doo for a having studied one of the 'soft subjects'. Scientific culture goes hand in hand with literature, art, music. I get a bit tired of the science takes hegemony argument in education. We are cut to fit into patterns.
  4. But seriously Martin, I get what you are saying about ebony- Identification or nomenclature that those list writers of the time period we are speaking of may not be identifying materials the same as our understanding of ebony ID. Howevah, the text list we have been looking at does use a few startlingly specific species names, Guaiac wood for example, and Ivory is, well ivory, but also maple and Red Oak. So why not ebony? I understand that ebony could also have meant 'ebonized' a lighter wood treated in such a way chemically or with dye/paint to make it black and it may be called ebony by the kind of scribe hired notate out a list of furniture, clothing, personal effects etc. There is room for any wood thingy that is black to be labeled ebony. Or for ebony to be any darkish wood coming from Africa or the East. The problem of how to interpret 'Indian Cane' makes this problem evident. Is Indian cane a bamboo as we today would call it? Or is it a kind of East Indian hardwood? Or is it meaning a 'New World" wood? Speaking of which the list has an entry for Rosewood from Brazil. We know from ships manifest records and other shipping company and government documents wood from Brazil was entering Europe my mid 16th century. What exactly does Brazil wood mean? Remember pernambuco? That insignificant wood? first used as a dyestuff before idiots began waving it around in the air like a flagella for the punishment of violins. I'm not really a "scholar" and have no "credentials" , but I'll find the right evidence..Hahah I think in the end you have to comb through texts and cross reference them until consistent threads of nomenclature emerge and you follow them back and forth through the time periods until some naming or labeling standards can be established. In the mean time feel free to speculate wildly!
  5. As for identification of ebony back in the late middle ages, they consulted the few books written by experts that escaped being destroyed in the great fire that burned the library of Alexandria. We still have this book today, or modern rewrites which dissemenate this ancient information.
  6. As for identification of ebony back in the late middle ages, they consulted the few books written by experts that escaped being destroyed in the great fire that burned the library of Alexandria. We still have this book today, or modern rewrites which dissemenate this ancient information.
  7. Dear Martin, Epistemology, yes that is what happens when you prove a Wiki addict wrong with an old school consult of a card catalog. They get E-pissed off. In Japan these kinds of word play jokes are called 'Old Man Jokes'....I seem to be getting better and better at them. But faster than you can say Paul McCartney and Stevie Wonder, I shall get to the bottom of this ebony and ivory nomenclature or attribution issue!
  8. Just another Non STEM major doing my best to piss off the empirical imperials.
  9. The estimate that ebony was used toward the late 16th century is probably off by 100-200 years, if not much more. Ebony was clearly on the table right from the start of true violin making- Print out and examine this inventory I cited in post #9- I took the liberty of ripping three pages from the book, but the full essay gives more more information. From Augsburg circa 1566- an inventory of instruments bought, commissioned or otherwise collected by a wealthy amateur music enthusiast Raymond Fugger. It shows that instruments made with ebony clearly existed and were commonly available to those who could afford them. The trade route into Africa and India existed far back into the middle ages and theres no reason to assume these woods were not used in fine cabinet work, furniture making, art objects, frames etc. before the late 16th century. Marquetry inlaid table tops which employed rare hardwoods were commonly fabricated for select clients. The Iberian lands were also held by North African colonizers beginning in 711, and before than there was a trade between Africa and Europe which continued through the tenure of the Moorish occupation. The Sephardic and Arabic poetry and Troubadour prose poems of the late middle ages document vigorous seafaring from Africa to European ports throughout the late middle ages. You have to look deeper than the evidence presented in one discipline to get a compete picture of what goods were available in a particular time period. If Indian and African woods were employed in instruments listed in a mid 16th century estate inventory, then it is reasonable to conclude that the late 15th century saw an abundance of ebony available for rare musical instrument use. The instruments in this 16th century collection may have run the gamut from those which were commissioned by the deceased owner, to those made even long before his date of birth in the 1520's. It is known that lutes especially were recycled by changing the necks and number of strings they used to reflect the way lute composers wrote for the instrument as music developed. The life span of Raymond Fugger 1520's to 1566 spans a period of time in which probably two iterations of lute models would occur that would warrant recycling of older lutes, especially those with bowls made of precious materials. So if you take time to dig deeper into a few more areas of cross reference you get earlier and earlier dates for ebony use and availability. It was certainly on the instrument makers bench up in Augsburg circa 1545-1550 because Raymond's repair guy was in need of it to fix Rays lutes, viols and harpsichords,
  10. Especially now that beards are trendy, makes the case for more stained fruit wood pegs to be made today! I have an old fruit wood peg we talked about once before that is pretty much like the 5th one from the left in the top row. There is an estate inventory which includes instruments make for the banking family called the Fuggers, *not making this up* included in the inventory is an extensive list of string instruments some of which are made of ebony and ivory. It can be found in this old Galpin Society Journal: http://www.jstor.org/stable/841827?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents The instruments belonged to Raymond Fugger Jr. who lived 1528-1569. You can read ti for free online if you register with JSTOR on the website above. As I understand it there may have been ground based trade routes that enabled traders to import rare goods from India and Africa into southern Italy and Venice via crossing the Mediterranian after overland routes ended in north African ports. The trade had been established for several centuries before violin making really began with ivory especially being a fine art material import. There may have been merchants and stocks of ebony already established with certain rare goods dealers, and the prices would make them accessible only to the elite. Thank goodness the 1% ers of centuries past felt the need to show some Noblesse Oblige and have art things carved from and ivory. The Cloisters Museum in NYC holds such an object, the Cloisters Cross dates to 1150- but here is the interesting part, it is Walrus Ivory, not Elephant. Even though early trade in African ivory was happening don't forget trade routes extending north into Scandinavia. Of course Norwegian Ebony is so rare you can almost never find any. Mostly eaten by Beatles. Behold: carved Walrus tusk- http://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/470305
  11. Guys and gals like us can't help ourselves, we are addicted to building stuff. hahah
  12. Another way is to build a shallow box 2 -3" deep and make a melamine top. Hinge top at the bottom and then use this hardware to hold it open: https://www.hardwaretree.com/products.php?cat=Lid+Supports+Stays+All+Kinds Then you can go crazy making boxes and storage units in side for pencils and paper and you an pas sit on to your grandkid. Specifically this this lid support is for drafting boxes. https://www.hardwaretree.com/proddetail.php?prod=X-70200%2F05Z
  13. Go to Home Depot,get a half sheet of white melamine board, rip a 30 degree angle on th end of a 2 x 6, glue the angled end to the bottom of the melamine panel. Any height bench or table will work as a platform, set the drafting board on top and there is a movable drawing surface. You can also buy these already made. Handy does not take up space. Images: https://www.google.co.jp/search?q=drafting+board+for+table+top+use&safe=off&client=opera&hs=fWO&sa=X&biw=1366&bih=658&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&ved=0ahUKEwjdhLrE7tXMAhWHFJQKHUpDDg8QsAQILw This: http://www.photoproc.com/?image=http://www.decorlock.pics/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Alvin-PXB-Boards.jpg&title=Alvin%20PXB%20Boards&tag=Furniture
  14. Luckily no opera singers were sliced, either tangentially or radially in the making of this video. If this little video creeps you out I won't even tell you about working to mount the Body Worlds show. This is wonderfull stuff, we can look at the body while it is un-dismembered, fully alive. It's like doing archeology without having to dig up a grave. Of course I do know pianists, conductors and sopranos who would not mind seeing certain tenors tangentially sliced.... I've seen an MRI of my own torso and spine, they were checking to see if I had a vestigial tail....all they found was a cranial cavity, emphasis on the cavity. Bwahahahah
  15. I think it is cool and is great tool for singers to see how the vocal folds look in motion. As for creepy that is relative, Leonardo's notebooks of anatomy were probably gagging and creepy to average minds as well Science moves forward.
  16. I was listening to a lecture by E.O. Wilson the biologist His summation was the over population was not the issue the health of the oceans was more important. Guess the aniline thread died.
  17. Curious if anyone one used analine dye and the UV light treatment ti dry varnish contributed to the fugitive aspect. In other words did the intense use to concentrated UV speed up the degeneration of the tint? Tinctures and dyes are tricky, I've made tinctures wood chips in alcohol, some are very light fast and others fugitive...you have to put them in the window for weeks a moths a watch them with a part covered to block out sun. I just made one with Honduran rosewood chips that ended up being a light brown amber color a so far no fading. Although I did burn in the test piece ever so slightly.
  18. This would be interesting to be done on a violin, if there were some way to enhance and track the way it vibrates and moves. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2016/05/04/real-time-mri-captures-incredible-video-of-opera-singer-performi/
  19. I think Will is taking the Ursonata, the Chopin and the Auer.
  20. On the study of Black holes or dark whatever you choose to call it, there has been a most unfortunate set back. A few months ago JAXA launched a rocket that deployed a satellite designed to study this issue and the first information sent from this bird was to arrive in 2017-18. The instrument has been lost, it can no longer be tracked and JAXA-NASA has given up on trying to find the 280 million dollar tool, because they believe is was shattered by debris. Jaxa won't be able to mount another mission like this probably ever, and other countries are still five to ten years out on similar missions. This is month old news, but I find it devastating and I have been sad that these scientists put all that work into it. If I were a conspiracy nut I would formulate a narrative in which another nefarious actor used a robot satellite to munch the JAXA -NASA observatory, but I don't allow my mind to go to such places without a top secret security clearance. I hope another observatory for this purpose can be brought online. It seems like SpaceX could just do this out of petty cash. http://www.universetoday.com/128134/japans-black-hole-telescope-is-in-trouble/
  21. Since I am basically on a desert island I can answer this untheorhetically. Bach Suites, and a book of the complete scores of Mozart and Beethoven String Quartets, and probably Beethoven Cello sonatas. The quartet scores are for supporting your morale, they point to a time where you may be rescued and can play in a quartet after having studied the scores diligently. Perhaps even transcribing the other parts to your instrument to understand all the voices profoundly and to keep your head in the game of thinking in four voices of music instead of talking to yourself. The Bach is for solace against being alone and the Beethoven sonats are a hedge against the event of a pianist crash landing on your island with only a sheaf of disgusting Chopin Etudes. If you take nothing, but bowing exercises and technical book you will commit suicide on a broken coconut shell. You need the great composer to pull you through, not the great puzzle makers. But of course you guys are speaking hypothetically..... Ok back to studying those Mozart scores.....
  22. Manfio was very generous to give help designing the model, a lot of information if you are looking to make a viola model. At this time I have decided not to attempt to go deeper into bowed instrument making, a decision I took shortly after working on this model so no progress past this point. If my living situation ever changes I may look into making bowed instrument again, in the mean time I'm happy to vicariously live it out through James' good run on that da Salo he made.
  23. Also not a good example. If you are busy watching movies while flying fast dangerous rockets you make steer yourself into a Black Hole.
  24. She meant YOUR pants full, not the horses. You may need these for your next train ride.
  • Create New...