Wednesday, October 20, 2010

If I Were Three

It has been a few years since I was three, but I think if I were, I could play with these blocks all day long.
Random sizes, randomly painted, who could ask for more?
I think it is pretty darn close to impossible to avoid creating a visual masterpiece, regardless of how they are stacked.
The possibilities are endless.Each master piece is ephemeral, made once, never to be seen again, but who cares, the next will be better still.
They are made with pine and milk paint. I had never used milk paint before so I was interested to learn more about it. It is completely safe, essentially edible, made with milk proteins, limestone, and natural pigments. They are the some of the oldest paints of human history, found on cave paintings. It acts more like a stain than a modern paint so there are no brush marks left behind. Surprisingly, I couldn't find any suppliers nearby so I ordered some samples from these very nice people in Maine. When I started using it I realized that I've seen a lot of studio furniture makers use them, like David Hurwitz and Mark Del Guidice, but didn't know exactly what I was looking at. I couldn't figure out how they avoided brush marks so impeccably. It is also compliments contemporary furniture by giving a contrasting old/antique-esque look to the work.

I think I should have made a set for myself. Maybe I'll get lucky and learn that three-year-olds find them useless.


  1. Wow, Rob, did you make these fabulous blocks? I'd like to see you post a new arrangement every few posts, just for fun! And I want some too!

    What would happen if you used milk paint underneath your shellac painting?

  2. Thanks Janet. I wish I had more of the lumber to make some for myself, it would be fun to play with them. If don't think it would be worth shellacking them, to much work and I don't think there would be much gained, better to keep them raw and playful.