• mackenzietalangton

The eleventh hour : Final Capstone physical development post

In this final blog post I will discuss some of the physical development my capstone project has undertaken in these last few weeks.


Much of my energies throughout this year have been directed towards developing unique finishes. Exploring oxidation and the patination of metal and wood, and the deeply emotive quality of surface weathering. This sheet of copper above was oxidized using a product designed for sculptures called JAX. It is a simple oxidizing solution that when applied accelerates the creation of copper's characteristic green-blue rust.

After testing many different application strengths and methods including pre-oxidizing the copper with "gun metal blue", another oxidizing chemical that renders certain metals blackish brown, I developed a method that satisfied my desired final appearance and applied it to the exterior of the copper dome I had spun by Harnisch lamps weeks before.

Another finish Ive been working on to accelerate the aging of wood, as well as highlighting grain with colour is a "milk paint stain". For this experiment I tried many different combinations of standard milk paint colours, some applied directly to raw unfinished wood, other over wood pretreated with shellac to help the stain spread and penetrate. Finally I developed a method of dilluting Homestead house "bayberry" milkpaint and working it into unfinished wood surface and quickly removing it, as you would do with a oil based stain. After sanding back and removing any remaining paint from the surface with a scotch brite pad I applied 2-3 coats of Osmos top-oil.

This finish adds a subtle and entirely organic colouration to the wood, also hydrating and darkening the Cherry as if stained. Ive decided to use this finishing technique on both the Lamp and chest top.

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