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first 'modular' flower put together via tap and die technique

my first flower that has no epoxy.  it only took hours and hours. 2 days and lots of frustration. but god dammit i did it.  what makes this different than my other flowers (see post below) is that i used a newly learned tap and die technique whereby i drilled a hole into the rebar and then made threads into the hole to then screw the flower part into the stem thus making it modular.  the point of this is to save me a lot of time (when i get good at it) and money.  less dremel tool usage, less having to completely clean off the rust/grind it/score it.  so far the only frustrating part is the fact that i dont know what drill bit sizes i need/have and i only have 2 tap pieces that work for me (the rest are metric and i dont even wanna go there).  

the other frustrating thing is i work with found objects; i have and prefer to use, old nuts/bolts/screws.  so i have no idea if they are metric and what size they are. plus they need to be cleaned off in the thread area in order for them to screw in.  lastly, my drill press isnt the best nor do i have a good vice or a place to clamp a good one.  its a big pain in the ass but i'm gonna push thru it all because i think for the most part this seems like a good thing to keep doing.  it will and does affect how the flower looks as i need to have a bolt thru it.  not all will work that way i guess and my old way of making flowers is perfectly good, i just like knowing they are clean and simple and very sturdy this way.  i've only had 1 or 2 flowers out of the nearly 300 i've made not work out (meaning they dropped or got damaged in shipping and broke).  nothing is perfect but i try.

2nd modular flower

i wont bore you with the rest of the flower process...its my thing to learn and do.  i'm already running low on the kinds of bolts i need (quarter inch is preferable, and not all clean and shiney if anyone has a box of grandpa's hardware sitting around in their garage).

what else is challenging?  well....its raining a LOT and it has impaired my ability to work as much as i want.  my car is leaking oil.  worst of all i'm getting new neighbors and they are big party animals.  i'm already getting woken up at ridiculous times and they havent even moved in yet.  yes. they actually come here just to party and then leave at 4am.  i feel completely overwhelmed about my life at times, particularly when i've searched and have yet to find a place i can afford/live/work.  ITS PERFECT HERE on so many levels.  if i move away from this area i'm going to be secluded and i know me, i know that i wont do well emotionally.  part of what works for me here is i'm in the middle of things and see people during the day even if we dont know each other that well, we talk, we nod, we wave.  i have lots of local business peeps dropping off packing supplies and even found objects for me.  it feels good here, i feel part of this community in a strange way.  most of my friends live in the area and i can walk around at night and stop by/visit...feel safe and not isolated.  the most important thing for me is having a place to live/work and be able to sleep.  art is what i do, it isnt like i wanna wake up and go drive somewhere to do it.  its all here at my fingertips.  i do my etsy stuff, my packing/shipping/photography (thanks to cool industrial areas just outside my door)...everything.  i can wake up and get right to work and stop and eat and work and rest....its just how the day/night goes.  so i know that about me, i have to live/work in the same place.  it just isnt an option not to.

i've kinda taken a break from working for dan.  part of it was menopause stuff, not being able to get up early have any energy to work in a hot stuffy place when not feeling good.  part of it was just burning my body out with the work i was doing there.  and at the time i had a lot of art sales and requests for more work so that took a priority.  now i'm thinking shit, how am i supposed to work somewhere if i can't even sleep peacefully?  as it is, just working for myself on my time is a challenge especially when i can't get a good nights sleep.  i can only hope it works itself out for the best without me losing my mind like i did the first year we were here and had hellion neighbors the entire year.  it totally sucks when you can't have peace and quiet in your own living space.  its all a conundrum.  i'm still getting no signs/clues about what to do.  i like it HERE.  i dont wanna move.  dont know where to move or how i would even pull it off with all the crap i have.  i wish i could just sleep and not be woken up.  ear plugs/fan....they still wake me up.  okay i'll try to quit complaining for now.....


I can understand you not wanting to leave those great photography opps--love the paint in the top pic. And you're taking your craftswomanship to the next level, that's never a bad thing!
Kim Hambric said…
Jeez, can't the landlord do ANYTHING about the noisy neighbors. I guess he doesn't give a shit as long as he gets the money. There are far too many crap landlords along one side of my house, but at least these noisy bastards are not living above me.

Glad to hear that work is fulfulling (at this time).
Viktoria said…
Good to read about your new technique!
For sure a simplification in the long run!

hope the annoying neighborhood will not bother you too much!
paula said…
yes kim they have a lease violation paper taped to their door. so next time they come over to party they will see that. i would love it if they realized this isnt THAT kind of place and dont even move in.
thanks for the good words peeps, i know none of this is that interesting unless its your learning curve but i thought i would share ;)
Lisa Fulton said…
The new technique has a really good look. I can see the difference. I even like the IDEA of bolt and screw versus epoxy glue. Of course you will continue to use glue when you need it, but I think you're developing an all-metal method that will pull you further into sculpture. Your flowers have always looked more like art than craft, to me.
paula said…
thank you lisa! that encourages me :)
Carla Trujillo said…
All I can think of is ear plugs for the loud neighbors.
I'm with you on using alternate methods of attaching found objects together!

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