Monday, March 23, 2015

The Rock

This is an old post that I found in a Draft mode from a couple of years ago, but it is still relevant, so here it is!  

A few years ago I was out mowing the lawn one nice summer day.  Things are going along fine when all of a sudden there is a loud grinding noise coming from the blades.  I know and hate that sound.  It means I've hit a rock.  That usually means beat up blades, a lot of work to repair/replace, and the lawn is only half-mowed.  I stopped, got off the tractor, and found the source of the noise.  I dug up the offender.  Rather than tossing it into the woods or putting somewhere out of the way, I took a deeper look at the rock.  It seemed to have a very interesting shape.  I set it aside for later.

A closer look at the blades indicated it must have been a glancing blow as there wasn't any damage - or at least any new damage - to the blades.  I finished mowing the lawn.  

Several days later I looked at the rock again with a different point of view.  I liked the shape, the size, and form.  There is a Japanese art form called Suiseki.  From Wikipedia - "These stones are not just any stones which can be found in nature; they must be expressive stones and have a special shape, color and texture to be categorized as suiseki. There is a distinction between landscape and object stones. The former reflect landscapes such as mountains, lakes or rivers, while other stones have object shapes that resemble animals or sculptures."

I had been looking for a good suiseki for some time.  I hadn't spent a lot of energy but always felt like I'd know it if I saw it.  This was the one.  I set about designing a glass stand for the rock, in the true nature of Suiseki.  However, one thing was still bothering me.  

Then the thought occurred - why not make the rock in glass as well.  

The story of making the rock is quite a bit of work - rubber molds, mother molds, two part molds, casting, etc.  I'll document that at some other point.  In the meantime, here is "The Rock".