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Old 07-19-2020, 07:13 PM
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Pete VanderLaan Pete VanderLaan is offline
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So what exactly is a tool?

This should be a piece of cake.
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Old 07-19-2020, 07:47 PM
Lawrence Duckworth Lawrence Duckworth is offline
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Sometimes tools are an investment. I bought a set of signed David Patchen’s cork paddles with the wood handles awhile back. I used them once, then put them in storage.

David is reported to be one of the top 10 modern glass blowers in the U.S......soooo I plan on my grandchildren making some big bucks someday
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Old 07-20-2020, 06:05 AM
Victor Chiarizia Victor Chiarizia is offline
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a tool is kind of a jerk or ass hat. a bit slow, dolt-ish. v
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Old 07-20-2020, 08:55 AM
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Is a rock a tool? Re some rocks better tools if they're rocks?
Is a lens a tool?
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Old 07-20-2020, 10:06 AM
Shawn Everette Shawn Everette is offline
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Sometimes, yes, sometimes.

If you want to talk about it in terms of craft/Art, a tool is used to affect a material, but is not presented as part of the finished piece. This is usually more easily discernible in the craft world, separating itself from the Art worlds penchant for bullshitery. With glass we often have instances where it is used it as a "tool", e.g. punty.
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Old 07-20-2020, 12:19 PM
Rick Wilton Rick Wilton is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete VanderLaan View Post
Is a rock a tool? Re some rocks better tools if they're rocks?
Is a lens a tool?
everytime I go camping, I expect humans in a thousand years to find our camp sites and say "primitive man used rock to smash steel peg into ground to hold up flimsy shelter"
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Old 07-20-2020, 12:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn Everette View Post
Sometimes, yes, sometimes.

If you want to talk about it in terms of craft/Art, a tool is used to affect a material, but is not presented as part of the finished piece. This is usually more easily discernible in the craft world, separating itself from the Art worlds penchant for bullshitery. With glass we often have instances where it is used it as a "tool", e.g. punty.
****
I like to think of it as something that can help you perform a function better. There are flat rocks and sharp rocks. One bashes heads well, the other can drive a nail while your hand can't. There are workable and terrible glasses.

That's why I think of a decently engineered glass being a tool if you tried to perform the piece using bottle glass. One isn't going to let your work happen- period. But you assert neither the glass or the color in any piece is a tool at all. I take it that photosensitive glasses that can develop images are not tools then.

So in the development of the microscope, it hit early limitations because of tooling in the form of the lens. It really didn't work. Once Schott developed better glasses did the performance improve to a level of working reasonably well. Is the microscope the tool. Is it a tool without the lens? Are the components of the thing that made it function tools?
Can a lens be a tool if it's used to start a fire?
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Old 07-20-2020, 12:49 PM
Charles Friedman Charles Friedman is offline
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I go by the old rules:
(1) That one should use the right tool for the right job.
(2) The best tool in the toolbox is a hammer.
(3) Everything can be used as a hammer.
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Old 07-20-2020, 01:04 PM
Shawn Everette Shawn Everette is offline
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Originally Posted by Pete VanderLaan View Post
****
Is the microscope the tool. Is it a tool without the lens? Are the components of the thing that made it function tools?
Can a lens be a tool if it's used to start a fire?
Of course the microscope is a tool. Assuming it's not part of an art installation, then it's adapted material.

It's a very poor tool without the lens, but still possibly a tool.

The components would only be a tool if they serviced a function. If they are no longer in service, then they're just objects. Possibly hammers.

Yes.

If glass is a tool, then is a painters paint not also? The sculptors metal? Everything in existence? What prevents something from being a tool?
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Old 07-20-2020, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Shawn Everette View Post

If glass is a tool, then is a painters paint not also? The sculptors metal? Everything in existence? What prevents something from being a tool?
****
I am inclined to think that the paint is a tool and you can buy good or bad tools. I know from pouring bronze that nice silicon bronze flows well. Valves don't. I turn I suppose to fine furniture and wonder if using worm eaten poplar is a bad choice as opposed to walnut. Certainly are both wood.

What I don't really know outside myself is whether I want the work I make to last up to a point where others can reflect on it as contributing to a larger body of appreciation.Corning represents about 1500 people who really could make good glass sing.

When I look at work in Corning, I don't tend to look at it from the point of view of the handtool affecting the finished piece. I do know the clarity and color of the glass does. I certainly appreciate the skills sets of the glassmaker but I've watched Lino enough times to know he can use an awful lot of tools if they are what's around.
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Old 07-20-2020, 03:28 PM
Shawn Everette Shawn Everette is offline
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I still try and diverge a "tool" from "material". Wise material choices are important, but great things are made from things that are not the "best" or most expensive choice. By comparison there are very few that even get the chance to actually select the material that they're using.

It was a interesting couple of weeks when we switch over to bomma, transitioning from a glass that could be used to blow, to one that was designed for it. Some hated it, some loved it, most probably could articulate the difference. Took me about 2 ornaments to figure out any changes I needed to make.

Anyway, I pity no man that blames their tools.
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Old 07-20-2020, 05:24 PM
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It's always worth recalling Larry Bell, who did so much stuff with sputter deposition on glass saying

" An Artist never blames his tools, he blames his assistant."

GAS inevitably paid people to make the keynote address to the society by people who belittled the bunch, most notably Melamid who spoke of the "Rubber band society" bound together by its love of rubber bands.


I'll stop here. It confirms the motivations for why information drops dead every other generation. It doesn't matter. Life's an Easter egg hunt.
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Old 07-20-2020, 06:46 PM
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A tool is an object that enables you to reach a goal or product or outcome. Tools aid in transformation.

A raw material is that which either alone or in conjunction with other raw materials is transformed into product.
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Old 07-21-2020, 09:26 AM
Shawn Everette Shawn Everette is offline
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I'll stop here. It confirms the motivations for why information drops dead every other generation. It doesn't matter. Life's an Easter egg hunt.
If that's the agenda, who are you trying to blame?

Glass chemistry is pretty well never covered in programs. I'm pretty sure my extent was "throw some cobalt in it, should turn blue". On the lines of compatibility it was "Oh, that cracked? Yeah, probably shouldn't use that color". Seedy? "Wait half a day, maybe squeeze". Need color? "Call Olympic".

Since their is a steady supply of very usable material, at I would say is a reasonable price, why chastise people that simply want to make work? Was Michelangelo supposed to go to the quarry and dig out the marble himself? Lino supposed to inspect every pellet of batch? Everyone supposed to make their own jacks?

Last edited by Shawn Everette; 07-21-2020 at 09:38 AM.
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Old 07-21-2020, 01:50 PM
Eben Horton Eben Horton is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete VanderLaan View Post
****
I am inclined to think that the paint is a tool and you can buy good or bad tools. I know from pouring bronze that nice silicon bronze flows well. Valves don't. I turn I suppose to fine furniture and wonder if using worm eaten poplar is a bad choice as opposed to walnut. Certainly are both wood.

What I don't really know outside myself is whether I want the work I make to last up to a point where others can reflect on it as contributing to a larger body of appreciation.Corning represents about 1500 people who really could make good glass sing.

When I look at work in Corning, I don't tend to look at it from the point of view of the handtool affecting the finished piece. I do know the clarity and color of the glass does. I certainly appreciate the skills sets of the glassmaker but I've watched Lino enough times to know he can use an awful lot of tools if they are what's around.
The paint is the material. The brush and pallet knife are the tools. The better the brush, the more precise you can paint. In fact painters take a great deal of care on the numbers and styles and quality of their brushes.
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Old 07-21-2020, 05:08 PM
Michael Ahlefeldt-Laurvig Michael Ahlefeldt-Laurvig is offline
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This is one of the strangest threads Ive ever seen
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Old 07-21-2020, 06:58 PM
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I was looking for something. I found it. Sometimes you don't know what you've got if you never had it at all. What I wanted to know was simple "In this brief time you have- about 80 years on the planet. do you want to make the best things you can make with the best tools perhaps, and the best materials that you could possibly attain?

I view that in the framework of teaching how to get some of that.
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Old 07-22-2020, 12:03 AM
Shawn Everette Shawn Everette is offline
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Prioritization is highly subjective. I've had great materials, I've had them go away. I shed not a tear, but continue to make what I want. One could spend several lifetimes chasing the dragon of "perfection" in material, I prefer to be more adaptive. We once used to make glass from a camp fire and whatever could be locally sourced. That "junk" glass is probably the most valuable on the planet...
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Old 07-22-2020, 01:38 PM
Terry Crider Terry Crider is offline
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I somewhat agree with Michael --- everytime I read a couple of new posts ---I think back to my bow hunting days.
Most any old bow can shoot a straight arrow reasonably well.
The best bow in the world won't shoot a crooked arrow worth a d__n.
At the same time, a whole lot depends on what you are trying to do.
Are you trying to shoot a rabbit at 10 ft. or a world record white tail at 30 yds.
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Old 07-22-2020, 02:35 PM
Art Freas Art Freas is offline
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All comes down to: If you are cutting with an axe you don't need a micrometer.
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Old 07-22-2020, 03:01 PM
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When I began blowing glass, in 1969, there were no color rods, nothing at all, and I wanted color so I began to mess with it. In the early days, we melted glass from the glass and mirror shop in town that were drops. Also rather limiting as a blowing glass but we were excited. So between a short clear glass and no color a man appeared named norbert Kreidl. Norbert was an assistant of Weyl's early on and became a peer of Weyl's. You will see him referred to constantly in "Coloured Glasses"

Norbert was encouraging and would bring me chemicals that we tried to add to the plate glass and somethings worked. There was no science to it. He was just amazed at what we were trying to do in that High Desert town back then.

I was fortunate enough to make contact with Dudley Giberson back then and Dudley was making his own colors even then in tiny quantities. He, and a man named Frank Kulasiewitz was melting lead glasses in Southern New Mexico. Frank went on to write a book on how to build a shop that was thoroughly attacked by Henry Halem. I contacted Frank a lot. Between them and a determination to learn more, I began to melt formulas from Handbook of glass manufacture by Hodkin and Cousin. I still remember "Bohemian crystal", hard as a rock. That led to Weyl and spending about 1/4 million dollars on doing it in the next four decades. It led me to making what I wanted when I wanted. It led me to polishing. I can count the number of people who actually want to do this on two hands. Henry asked me to write the section on it for Glassnotes IV. It doesn't seem that it generates interest at all. That's all. I'll quit talking about it.

Glass through the forties and fifties was terrible. Since the trade seems determined to learn and then forget what it learned skipping generations to do it, maybe the comet will come around again in forty years. A lot of glass is in the process of becoming terrible yet again. It's not something you can just write about. You have to do it. That's how it gets lost.
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Old 07-22-2020, 03:43 PM
Shawn Everette Shawn Everette is offline
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Welcome to generational change. You're absolutely right that the early arts and crafts days had a scarcity of good materials. It also had a scarcity of good collectors. Some people found a way to tun the supply side of things into profitable enterprise as things improved. I'd say we're at a near height of good available materials, if not a slight downturn because of recent changes caused by the impact of companies changing location, ownership, and improving environmental impact. I'm hopeful that these are simply growing pains, but in the end, I'm hard pressed to see any change that is going to keep me from blowing glass. Even if I have to go collect bottles.
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Old 07-25-2020, 12:43 PM
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A government or elected official who takes direction on importent matters from private interests while thinking, or representing themselves as being "of the people, by the people and for the people".
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Old 07-25-2020, 12:46 PM
Paul Thompson Paul Thompson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles Friedman View Post
I go by the old rules:
(1) That one should use the right tool for the right job.
(2) The best tool in the toolbox is a hammer.
(3) Everything can be used as a hammer.
tool, n. That which is used by a five-year old who sees everything as a nail.
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:26 PM
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I've been thinking about this and I find that if I compare it to my life in the kitchen, I find my own answers to the tool question. I am an avid cook. 20 years ago, I had 10x the kitchen gadgets that I have now. I have given away hundreds of items designed to make me a better cook. Dozens of knives. Small appliances enough for 10 yard sales. What I've found as I've mastered the art of cooking, is that once I intimately understood all the fine nuances that impacted my craft, I could easily see what tools I did and didn't need. I don't need many knives. I need a good knife sharpener. Many single function gadgets take up space and time and are tough to clean. I'd wager I could make as fine a meal with a knife, a pot, a pan and fire as 1,000 home cooks with the george foreman grill, a vegetti, and 200 ginsu knives.

A tool assists in converting raw materials into the desired finished product.
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