Kind of addicting. I’m going to bid on at least one bow that I hope to win and turn into a project. :)
My cello revarnishing is complete. I’m going to loan it to a friend to play in before I put it back on the market. Woo Hoo for cellos! It has Larson and Spirocore strings, red brown varnish, a maple one piece back and a strong clear sound. It was inspired by the b form Stradivari cellos, one of the most famous being the Davidoff.
My cello: one of the things that I’ve been busy working on. I’m finally happy with the color of it and my two violins (one I made and the other is a Chinese violin I finished.) The next step is to get them polished and set up and sent out for others to enjoy.
I’ve also been working on an heirloom violin as well as gearing up to finish my bows now that my rehair jig is complete.
Some of the projects heading out the door at my day job have most definitely been taking up considerable amounts of energy. I’ll post about some them in the upcoming weeks…
So yeah. Plenty to keep me out of trouble. :)
I’m normally pretty good about remembering birthdays, so I was a little surprised to look it up this morning and find out that today is my tumblr’s 1st birthday. It was an amazing first year. I hope to continue to interact with wonderful people and learn about awesome/astonishing/shocking/frightening/hilarious/impressive/intimidating/magnificent things. This blog means a lot to me. Thanks to all who have helped make it great. :)
I understand that the force of the market plays a big part for some makers deciding to antique or not and I’ve heard that customers find antiqued instruments more approachable than their straight varnished comrades. I think that to either do antiqued or straight well, it takes great skill and patience. I personally prefer straight. I’m also a bit stubborn. I definitely don’t want to build my career based on antiquing and copying. I will never be as good as Stradivari at being Stradivari. And I’ve never really like caricatures. I once read that someone compared seeing a bunch of copies together like being at an Elvis impersonator convention. I’m just going to do my best to make beautiful new instruments while sharing my point of view with anyone who is willing to listen.
275 years ago, the greatest known violin maker died. We have no record of Antonio Stradivari’s birth, so let’s celebrate his life by honoring his death. He was born in a time when music was changing and the violin was taking on a new role within the group. It was once relegated to accompanying music, then after the Renaissance it was called to a melodic, soloing role. Up steps a violin maker from relatively unknown origins.
Cremona, Italy lives in the tomes of violin makers. Generations of makers lived there before Stradivari came along. Based on the age that was put on his labels, it is accepted that he was born in 1644. For a little historical perspective, this is after many perished when the plague ravaged Europe.
When Stradivari made his first violins in about 1660, they were obviously influenced by the Amati family. About 1690 he morphed the forms and archings of his violins to create more sound. He had introduced a new model and this was courageous because the demand for the bigger concert hall sound didn’t come about until the mid 18th century. In 1704 he seemed to reach his optimal goal for sound as his instruments were extraordinarily brilliant with a full and powerful tone. 1704 to 1720 marks his “golden age” of making. My favorite instrument, the Soil, was made during this time in 1714. He made violins up until the mid 1730s. The instruments from his last years clearly show his declining strength and skill. His second wife died in March of 1737 and he was not long to follow. Antonio Stradivari, violin maker/pwner, died December 18th, 1737. He made an estimated 1100 instruments, sparked countless innovations in making, and lived to be about 94.