Friday, January 8, 2010

No. 8 Modern Lounge Chair

     This post is the first of week two...of fifty-two. This should be a piece of cake. As I mentioned yesterday I'm going to take a little space here to talk about this project and what I have learned after one full week of the process. If you couldn't care less, just scroll down to the design, I won't be offended. In fact I won't even know (Google Analytics is good but not that good).
     First I want to give a little background on this "1 day, 1 design" project, as I just sort of threw it out there without any notice or explanation. The reason for that is really quite simple: I hadn't thought of the idea until December 30 nor committed to doing it until the next day. In a way, I was just as unaware as everyone else. So why make such a commitment with almost no forethought and no publicity (I have yet to inform my Facebook fans about this exercise)? Because I had to. You know when you just know you need to do something? 2009 was probably the worst year of my life on many levels, but I came though it with greater clarity of my life and everything in it and a resolve to change those things that needed to be changed. This exercise was a way to change a few of those things, so I grabbed a hold and jumped.
     So, how has this past week changed my designing? Overall, it has made sitting down and drawing a piece much easier and more natural. The exercise has completely taken the pressure off, contrary to what I would have imagined. There is, of course, a little pressure in having to draw and post something new each day, but the actual thought and drawing process feels free and is fairly easy. Knowing there will be a new drawing tomorrow has opened up the creative doors and built confidence. In one short week I have also stumbled on a format and process that works very well for me most of the time. While this will develop or maybe change completely over time, having a set process allows me to focus on the design rather than all the things involved in staging and laying it out on the page, etc.
     My plan for the next few weeks is still developing, but at this point I will stick with the current format for this week. Next week will be seven designs from a single category. Week four will be reader request week. You can make suggestions starting today, and they can be as general to insanely specific as you wish. I will gather all the ideas and, assuming I get more than seven, have a random selection on  Wednesday, January 20th. The selection will be accompanied by much pomp and circumstance and may even be broadcast live! Have your requests in by the 19th and tell me if you want your name mentioned or would prefer to remain anonymous. Just follow this link to the request form.
     One more note then on to the design. Some of my fellow woodworkers have expressed interest in beginning regular design/post endeavors of their own, but don't want step on my toes. I think it is a great idea. Go crazy. After seeing what is has done for me I encourage you to do something in this area. As little or as much as you can, but jump in and do it!
     I think this is such a good idea, that I am in the process of creating a community site exclusively for anyone who wants to contribute their designs, either as a primary posting source or as a secondary source to a regular blog, as I would do. More to come on this, but if you are at all interested let me know.

     (A moment to catch my breath)

     Now to today's post. The category is Lounge Seating and I decided to go with a lounge chair. I have read that chairs are the most daunting projects for most woodworkers and while I don't know if that is true, I do know I have a lot of trouble drawing them. The side view of a chair is usually it's good side. The straight on front view often looks flat at best and downright ugly at worst. And the 3D perspective can easily turn into something out of a Picasso painting.
     With all that said I am getting better. Not good yet, but better. This chair has the feel and shares some characteristics with those produced during the mid 1900's. I imagine this one in walnut with natural, off white canvas secured to the frame with wire or some high strength string.

The Good: To me the chair looks pretty comfortable, which is kind of important in a lounge chair. I think the color scheme would be striking, but not too bold. I have always liked cantilevered designs, though making them work and sturdy can be challenging.
The Bad: After looking at the finished rendering, I think that all the pieces of the frame could stand to be narrower and slightly thicker.


John Strauss said...

I agree Jamon with your last sentence. Also that joint at the back on the floor is going to be real interesting to engineer!

Shannon said...

My first impression was "how are you going to execute that bottom rear joint?" Then I remembered something that Thos. Moser said in his keynote at the WIA design conference this past August. His son was building something similar and they were experimenting with a new kind of epoxy. He build a small side table that basically was a Z shape. The joints were merely miters. Thos. showed a picture of his son standing on the Z after the glue was cured that we pretty impressive.