All the better to Show you with!!

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All the better to Show you with!!

Post  bonsai monkey on Thu Oct 08, 2009 10:46 am

Hi Guys, here’s one for the UK Exhibitors among you. Cool

Do you know where I can get the funky “dods of wood” that people use for displaying under Accents or trees? I ain’t got a Scooby Doo what they are called, in English or Japanese, but was looking to purchase some small pieces but didn’t know where to look. I did see some for sale at BoBB but I’d blown my wad by then so I had to leave it for another day!

I hope you know what I’m after and all information would be gratefully received Very Happy
Okk, Okk,
Simon

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Gary Evans on Thu Oct 08, 2009 10:55 am

William Vlaanderen is selling them on his web site.

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Harleyrider on Thu Oct 08, 2009 5:51 pm

but I’d blown my wad by then

Shocked
The mind boggles.

Having sneaked a peek at the 'slices of tree' on Mr Vlaandern's website, I'd like to add a little something to BM's original question.

Do you know where I can get the funky “dods of wood” that people use for displaying under Accents or trees?
That are priced within the pocket of yer average pauper.
Sad

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Guest on Thu Oct 08, 2009 6:16 pm

You need to find yourself a nice friendly tree surgeon. Ask him, bribe him, take him down the pub and ask him to cut off the burrs on limbs or trunks, before he turns the lot into firewood. Keep them in a dry place for a couple of years [if they're green] then saw them up and get sanding. If you varnish/ laquer, dont forget to do both sides as they'll warp.

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  fiona on Thu Oct 08, 2009 7:30 pm

Failing that, Peter has them at Willowbog.

You can see them for yourself when you receive your award at the BSA show in February!!!

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Kev Bailey on Thu Oct 08, 2009 7:47 pm

I saw a lot of these on sale at the Green Club at the Kokofu Ten show in Tokyo. Some of them are intricately carved around the edges and do take skill and a heck of a lot of work to develop the finish that is achieved. Love the details of those on the top shelf. I could only afford a small one of the tall carved root stands. Crying or Very sad


Some of the ones on William Vlaanderens site are comparable and actually VERY reasonably priced. Check out the sizes, some are pretty large.

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Harleyrider on Thu Oct 08, 2009 9:02 pm

Kev, I'm not denying the skill and sheer hard work that goes into creating these items. It's just that I think everyone has a limit on what they are prepared to pay for a particular thing, and those prices are waaay beyond mine!
It's a shame, really, as I much prefer these wooden 'slabs' over tables.

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Guest on Thu Oct 08, 2009 9:40 pm

I agree. Displaying bonsai can be hugely expensive. To put a tree in a good quality pot, have a table made, a scroll, accent with pot and stand can cost hundreds of £££. More to the point, although i've displayed in this way,I cant relate to it. We design and craft our little trees to look natural and then go and display them in the most unnatural setting. Whada you think?

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Harleyrider on Thu Oct 08, 2009 9:52 pm

Ooooh! Don't even get me started, Will. Mad

Methinks you and I need to join forces!

Bottom line for me is: I've come to look at a tree, so what's all this other stuff doing cluttering the place up?

EDIT:

I warned you not to get me started, Will!

I've been jokingly called an 'accent phobic', but I'm not. I actually admire a well designed and executed accent display, especially if there's something 'different' about it (think Tony's rusty drainpipe). I just think they should be shown in their own section, is all.
And I've been told that I'll need a display table at some point. Why? There must be loads of different ways or things you could stand a pot on. Why not try something different? I've had a few ideas for unusual ways to show trees, and I know Tony has a really neat one in the pipeline. (Wish I'd thought of that one, you swine!). Better yet, why not just stand the pot *GASP!* on the bare stand? Shocked
Much as I admire the eastern peoples and their cultures etc, I can't help thinking that as westerners we need to explore our own way of doing things. Progress is never made by slavishly copying everything someone else does.

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  fiona on Thu Oct 08, 2009 10:12 pm

Oh dear. Think we're going to go down a well-trodden path here. But hey ho.

re. "unnatural setting": I think it depends on whether we're crafting our trees to look "natural" or "artistic". If artistic then an equally artistic display setting is surely OK. If natural, then perhaps the formal Japanese style display may be over-egging the pudding. I happen to like that way of diplaying so I'm easy about it. What I most certainly don't like is seeing trees all just stuck on a table any old how as happens at many shows in the UK, including sadly one of the main ones in Scotland (Garden Show category). I believe we're all in agreement that the main focus of any display is the tree, irrespective of the display method. To me to stick them all on a table any old how makes the "exhibition" look like a jumble sale. Good trees are wasted because you can't see them for myriad other trees surrounding them and overlapping their space.

Another small but vital factor in display for me is the fact that, for whatever reason, a tree on a bare table surface loses effect. The simple act of putting another layer between pot and table lifts the whole tree into another dimension, and the burr slabs are excellent for achieving this in a less formal way than tables. And having just read HR's post which snuck in while I was composing, I have no problem with being "experimental" as long as we don't get into Damien Hirst-like outre-ness just for the sake of being different.

I'm beginning to ramble now. Over to someone else for a contribution while I decompose!

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Harleyrider on Thu Oct 08, 2009 10:20 pm

I thought I was in trouble when I saw your name, Fiona!

Each to their own, I say.

I wasn't suggesting that we should try to cram as many trees into a small a space as possible, or that the display stand should be bereft of all adornments. A simple bench covered in a plain white cloth, trees arranged with their own 'personal space' around them.
I thought the Wirral lads had it spot on at the show we attended, Fiona.

And to be honest, when I look at a show tree, my mind automatically blanks out everything else around it. Even the pot vanishes, which to my mind is how you can tell if a tree is in the right pot.

Hhhhhmmmmm. Cutting a tree in half and pickling it in formaldehyde. Now why didn't I think of that!

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  fiona on Thu Oct 08, 2009 10:51 pm

Dunno why you thought you were in trouble! Have I got a reputation or summat? That was a rhetorical question btw.

Actually, I don't think we're a million miles off agreement inasmuch as I agree that simple can work best in many cases, and that the Wirral mix was right. But there's an ingredient not yet higlighted which was a major contributor to creating the "personal space" you talk about, namely that the displays there had not just a covered bench but a backdrop as well. This combination is what made the trees stand out. Trees displayed without a backdrop can often get "lost" in what's going on behind. (I once went to a show where the trees were displayed with no backdrop and as a result, were almost completely drowned by the most hideous of flock wallpaper in the background. Yeuch!) And having looked at the few pics I took at Wirral, there is not a tree that is not on some sort of an underlayer, be it display table, burr, bamboo raft or other material. Again, I think this is necessary to show the tree to its best.

However, the only real point I was trying to make is that even the "simple" displays need a bit of thought if we are to show the tree to its best. I think we're getting there in the UK but there are still too many examples of jumble sale display masquerading as bonsai exhibitions. It doesn't need to copy slavishly another culture but it does require a modicum of artistic thought.

So, still speaking to you Steve, especially as you have a large lump of wood for me!

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Harleyrider on Thu Oct 08, 2009 11:43 pm

Would you like to rephrase that last statement, Fiona?

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  fiona on Fri Oct 09, 2009 12:01 am

Harleyrider wrote:Would you like to rephrase that last statement, Fiona?
Nah! Let 'em make of it what they will. And anyway, your stumps have already had plenty exposure on here in other threads! Evil or Very Mad

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  bonsai monkey on Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:46 am

Thanx for all your help guys ’n’ gals and I’m glad that you worked out what I was after from my fairly poor description. The burr slabs on William’s website are good value based on their size Kev but are waaaaaaaaay too large for little ole me!!! I’ll drop Peter a line Fiona and see what he’s got. Keep you guys posted of my progress,

Okk, Okk,
Simon

fiona wrote:Failing that, Peter has them at Willowbog.

You can see them for yourself when you receive your award at the BSA show in February!!!
Huh???? scratch

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Harleyrider on Fri Oct 09, 2009 2:00 pm

@ Fiona: Speaking of exposure, will you be whipping out your doradango's at Burr's? *He asked, innocently*

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  fiona on Fri Oct 09, 2009 4:53 pm

Harleyrider wrote: will you be whipping out your doradango's at Burr's?
Nah. Too many aberrant apostrophes about. Razz

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  bonsai monkey on Fri Oct 09, 2009 8:04 pm

Hi Steve,
Sorry to get back on thread mate but I just wanted to pick up on a couple of points that you made re showing trees. I’m no expert, I’ve done it once but can’t see it happening again in the near future, but here’s my take anyway.

I see that the pot, stand, scroll etc are an extension of the “living” items in a composition and should reflect this. A wise man, or was it a drunk man, once told me that the tree is the canvas and the pot the frame. Who would put the Mona Lisa in a clip frame or one of Mr Kimura’s wonderful trees in a high glazed mass produced Chinese pot? Fiona’s point of lifting the tree/accent off of the display bench, and in the case of a wood burr literally just millimetres, it gives a new “feel” to the display.

The cost. Will is right when he says that it can run into hundreds but I see it as an investment for future enjoyment of your trees which you can also share with others at shows. The flip side to this is that if you are a member of a good club/society there is always plenty of “loaners” who can help you out. I was blown away by all the offers of help etc that I received at the BSA show this year and I was only putting on a tin pot display. So in closing, show set up, like our beloved trees, can be as simple (cheap) or elaborate ( expensive) as you want to make it.

See you on the flip side,
Simon

BTW
I still don’t understand the Willowbog reference Fiona but I’m not the sharpest tool in the box drunken

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Jay Gaydosh on Fri Oct 09, 2009 8:21 pm

I believe her Willowbog refers to: http://www.willowbog-bonsai.co.uk/

Jau

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  fiona on Fri Oct 09, 2009 9:11 pm

Willowbog? Never heard of it! Wink

Monks - maybe, just maybe (because I am a nice person really) I was paying you the ultimate compliment and suggesting that maybe, just maybe, sometime soon you're gonna be a winner at the BSA show. The way your teeny wee trees have come on and the learning curve you personally have gone through (curve! it was a vertical face) means as far as I am concerned that maybe, just maybe, you would deserve one.

Hey, that felt gooooood! thumbs up

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  bonsai monkey on Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:26 pm

Gulp Embarassed

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Harleyrider on Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:44 pm

Group hug!

Mr Monkey, sir. As I said somewhere amidst all my earlier ramblings, each to their own. I have no problem with someone setting up a display in the way which they think best suits their purpose. It's just that my purpose doesn't allow for any 'distractions' from the main focus, ie the tree.

What I was trying to say about pots was that yes, there is an ideal pot for every tree, but for me that pot is one which 'hides from view' when you look at the tree. The only other criteria for me is whether the pot is big enough to sustain the health of the tree. Conversely, I can appreciate a beautiful pot for what it is. I've just ordered one from Dale Cochoy which will be virtually impossible to fit to any tree I've ever seen, but it's a nice pot and I just wanted to own it.
As for the Mona Lisa, frankly I wouldn't waste a clip frame on it. Phillistine that I am.

As for something being between the pot and the stand, I have to agree with what you and Fiona have so eloquently said. It does add a certain something to the overall view. BUT. I just think that we should be trying to find something different to the usual highly polished, ornate table/slab of wood.
A piece of driftwood, perhaps, or a simple bamboo placemat (£1.99 for 4 at Poundland!). Hell, even a piece of hand-made paper. Just try and think outside the box occasionally. (I can't believe I just used that phrase.)
I've got a small tree stump drying in my shed. My custom bike-building friend is going to bead blast it for me, then I'm going to get the roots and top of the trunk sanded flat, add a bit of lime sulphur and voila, display table/stand.
My job is welder/fabricator. I could easily make something out of mild/stainless steel to use in a display, and probably will. It will, no doubt, be frowned on, or at least draw some 'over the top of the glasses' stares in my direction, but who cares? Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
And I know this contradicts my saying that I don't like distractions in a display, but it does us all good to step outside or comfort zones now and then.

One point I do have to conceed to Fiona is that a simple backdrop to a display is vital. I can't forsee any occasion when flock wallpaper would add anything.

Like I told Tony when I first met him, being an inveterate rule breaker, I have a bin full of them at home. Besides, if I don't read the rule book, I don't know whether I'm breaking them, do I? Very Happy

Now, who wants a drink?

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  fiona on Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:49 pm



Oh man, that's all made me cry! Remember I'm at a vulnerable age where us wee wimmin cry a lot at not a lot.

Group hug? Bring it on!

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Harleyrider on Fri Oct 09, 2009 11:12 pm

Sorry, Fi. I love you

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

Post  Guest on Fri Oct 09, 2009 11:18 pm

Some very valid points on both sides, and a back drop is a must have. My problem is its all a bit clinical. Leaf shine, pure white deadwood, algae cleaned from the trunk, pot cleaned and oiled, stand polished, etc etc. You could'nt get further from nature if you tried. All a bit too precious.....My precious.

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Re: All the better to Show you with!!

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