Unique projects for private clients, production companies & marketing agencies (separate from “Film+TV” projects). Invariably they are difficult to categorise often being a combination of development, build, sculpture & delivery. Rather than my “projects” section consisting fundamentally Art Direction, Research and development or co-ordination roles.
“BlastOff” Power Boat Thermal vent + Air intake system:
It is not that often I hear the following:
"…Make my $1,000,000 speedboat look like a Star Wars Spaceship…"
Some weeks later after lots of scratch pattern making, mould work, sculptural engineering with Fibreglass paste and all sorts of specialist adhesives and processes "Blastoff" has incredible thermal vent fins and additional awesome scoop air intakes. A massive, demanding creative and technical challenge from start to finish. Initially Thermal Chimneys shaped as Fins were mocked up in simple (White & Pink) corrugated plastic to gauge scale, width and look (note engine bay “Lid” is missing, forward of Fins mocked up, in Two images below):
Fin Pattern & Mould:
Following agreement on basic dimensions (in relation to aesthetic and technical performance) a pattern was produced to enable a mould to be taken, including a very cool concave spine:
Following numerous filler primer spray coats to enable flatting back, a solid safe foot support allowing, waxing, split mould edging and mould insert creation was made to simplify things further down the line:
The first half of the mould could then be laid up and prepped for the final half lay:
Planned mould reinforcements were then added ready for production:
Followed by scores of hours of waxing moulds (3 coats, buffed), deep gel coat brush in (3 coats) and extensive strong FG layup and edge reinforcement with FG paste. The halves were then Epoxy tacked together, gel seam filled and internally edge bonded with FG chop strand paste. A huge project, giving incredible results.
Hollow Foot mount:
Meanwhile I had created the pattern for and made a special drop out mould for a hollow foot to allow the 2 fins to be mounted securely, both structural and aesthetic with White Gel insert:
Engine bay Lid repair:
The actual “Bonnet” or engine “Lid” (at boat stern just in front of new Fins) had been heavily damaged in a race incident at approx 100mph. It needed extensive and complex repair. Including grinding back to the cracked Glass mat and repairing on the top (White Gel) side and underside. An Aluminium brace was added between the hinge mounts as its “back had been broken” (Once the GRP repairs were complete it regained its spine and the brace left in place to spread hinge loads). Additional Air intake scoop breather holes were also added:
Air intake Scoops:
The most cost effective approach was to order “off the shelf” air scoops from the USA. These would then be modified to suit our needs. The scoops that arrived were considerably larger than expected (ordered by my client) but gave the correct air flow. They were also fairly thin and weak, and the wrong colour being Black. I ascertained the lids centre line and aligned the scoops symmetrically and to suit, a compound line was drawn and cut, trimming the scoop edges to a good but unfinished fit on the complex lid manifold geometry. Brass location pins were embedded to enable removal and replacement to same position and allow re-fixing for final bolting down. The scoop edges then had to be fully reinforced and angled to bed in tightly. Further, the scoops themselves needed extensive reinforcement. The scoops and their fitting were by far the most complex and demanding part of this extremely stimulating project.
Gel repair – Windows – Lift point fill – Through vents – etc:
Finished “BlastOff” elements:
Engine bay “Lid” Install:
With the additional scoop elements, new fibreglass added to repair the damage, as well as filler and spray from the body shop the lid was now considerably heavier than originally. Hydraulics were the only answer, I made an extended pallet to take the large lid; it was slid across the beams then the lid was flipped vertical and chocked to allow hinge pin install:
New scoops and Fins:
RCA textiles/Magnet inserts:
Contacted by an RCA Fashion student to assist her final project, involving extensive Silicone Rubber casting on Textiles. Experimentation and tests covered numerous fabric types, weights and finishes as well as different rubber types and consistencies; leading up to a final effective process for reliable, clean results.
Following on from this I was asked to assist with development of Silicone rubber impregnated with magnets and edge castings on fabrics for another London based Fashion designer:
RCA Kelly McCallum Polar Bear/Deer Goldsmith jewellery display unit:
Kelly McCallum; An ex RCA Goldsmith of expanding repute who’s first major exhibition involves very complex conceptual progression and technical design flair. Final taxidermy installation performed by a third party. I assisted in realising these incredible pieces; resulting in a large and impressive display of bejewelled sculpture shown at the stunning Shirazu Gallery, Mayfair (Please excuse some small image sizes in this section):
“S.L.Belle” Teak Steamer additions & design elements:
Extensive Teak work and special builds including insert windows (laminate glass), thermal vents, structural hull work and traditional corking to help renovate this beautiful old Boat. Potted history follows:
“A Victorian pleasure steamer with links to Worcester’s river Severn history has been put up for sale – 30 years after being saved from the breaker’s yard. The S L Belle, which currently operates on the river Thames, dates from 1894 and is licensed to carry 100 passengers. After her launch, the S L Belle sailed under steam around Land’s End and up the Bristol Channel to Worcester, where she took thousands of passengers on trips along the Severn for more than eight decades.
The S L Belle is listed on the National Register of Historic Vessels, a database of the 1,200 most historically important boats in the country. In 1980 the steamer, which is built of teak on an oak frame, was rescued by Ted Harris, of E G Harris, after falling into disrepair. He took it to the firm’s yard in London for extensive renovation. The vessel is now powered by a diesel engine salvaged from a Second World War Sherman tank after the original steam engines were removed in 1947”.
RDF/House to Home (Series Carpenter):
Heavily involved with “From House To Home” an RDF production and one of Sarah Beeny’s earliest shows; Oliver Heath was interior design consultant. Myself and two colleagues were the main carpenters and makers for the show through filming. Inputting extensive design & make development & creating everything from cabinetry to paint effects to glazing and decking.
Below: Image below from “House to Home” promo pack.:
Taking this further, I combine a strong interior design ethic and thorough technical appraisal when considering a piece of furniture or design, it can be built in-situ or delivered and installed. Crucially it can be coloured and textured to suit any existing furniture, floor or wall finish.
This enables any new piece to blend seamlessly into its environment both indoors and out. Further, combining audio, visual and electronic systems and devices into said furniture. The following images show various private client commissions to date:
18th Century French Gold Hi-Fi-AV unit:
A large and impressive piece that “totally transformed the room”. Designed to compliment the hand painted Gold square repeat pattern walls this brand new unit was aged and distressed to mellow instantly. Combining signal, power and lighting it also had twin thermal extraction through an exterior wall.
Bespoke corner AV/DVD storage unit: Private client.
This unit was designed to perfectly match existing coloured cabinets in the room. The diamond fret work on the Antique pewter door finish was copied from the Kilim throw on the antique sofa. A very useful feature on this unit is the wing cupboards were easily disconnected to turn it from a corner unit to a free standing chest unit.
Traditional Welsh dresser Plasma mount and Hi-Fi unit: Private client.
The client had an existing unit in place but it was of poor quality and lacked strength for their requirements. We replaced it allowing for full AV use:
Oak worktop Kitchen & hidden lighting for floating cupboards: Private client.
This project involved almost every aspect of this amazing house. From the Oak worktops and special interior glazed acoustic doors to special shutters and a new Slate roofed porch!
Oak Summer House with reclaimed Leaded windows: Private client.
This project very much blurs the lines between indoors/outdoors and design and audio. This smart little summer house not only had hidden exterior speakers but was made using spare Oak planks! To catch the last of the Summer Sun the rear panel of the roof structure was made from polycarbonate panel allowing the last rays to illuminate the interior.
Fully insulated Workshop: Private client.
A colleague required a good use of space and we made a very useful model- making workshop in his back garden. Very well insulated and double glazed.
Cottage Stair case with special storage treads, bespoke storage solutions: Private client.
The stair case in this instance was dilapidated and dangerous. I designed a replacement utilising the dead space below the winder treads as large storage bins. The treads simply hinge up for a safe space efficient storage solution. The new pull out shelf under the main area has trigger lighting and full extension runners to give high capacity load bearing. It is made from the original antique pine door from the under stair area. The Ironing board folds off this slide out shelf to give a compact Ironing surface.
(Below Left + Right; The landing in this small but quaint cottage was completely unused, with a window moved over and another added to centralise the light over the stair a usable space was created to make a very compact Hotel style shower room. The stainless Steel shower tray was commissioned locally. The Plank wall was scratch built, as was the Oak wheeled runner door to match. The angled mirror lifts up to give good toiletries storage and the under sink area is a useful cleaning product store. The Toilet top is Burred Oak and looks stunning against the white colour scheme.
Below left; Some simple IKEA units were bought and used in combination to fill this small space to allow a bed to be simply placed below. The glazed unit to the right of the units has a lit shelf, ideal for a reading light.
Below Right; The glazed pine doors are original Victorian and the drawer fronts with ceramic knobs are brand new and I have subtly stained them “in” to match using a bespoke method. The lower small doors were cut down from the original larger doors.
Below Left; A free standing bath makes a real statement along with its antiqued Gold surround shelf for candles and toiletries. The wall decal is off the shelf. The floor in this area is waterproofed pine, lightly coloured to give age.
Below Right; The end of this room has been sectioned into Three. The middle third is book shelves above a Radiator. The outer Two Thirds are actually sliding panels hiding large shelf storage. When each door is moved built in lights trigger to illuminate the contents.