Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Working with Francios

Working with Francios Spent three days up at Chase Rosade's working on trees with Francios Jeker. M. Jeker is known for his carving techniques and held forth in classes and hands on about what to look for in carving jin and shari and the way to use tools. Very informative and a good three days. I brought up three trees to work on, my Blue Moss Cypress, my San Jose Juniper and my little Japanese White Pine. There was a lot of using hand tools, carving knives and wire brushes to prepare the wood. He believes you should let the wood age one or two years before you put any Lime Sulpher on the work. On my Blue Moss, he liked my idea of jin and shari on the bottom branch but that was all he wanted to do on it. He wants me to wire and shorten the right side while allowing the left more freedom. He also wanted me to round the top.
I will wire and shorten in the Spring since I had wired the tree in April and taken the wire off last week in preparation for this class. My San Jose Juniper got most of his work, using a dremel with a neat looking bit on my shari which runs nearly the lenght of the trunk. It looks 100% better and I am really happy with it. And I got to sit and use the dremel on the trunk with him directing me which was fun.
He liked my little white pine the best and just chewed on the trunk with a carving tool to expose the wood. He was complimentary of the design and I was truly flattered. He also teased me about the "pot" it is in by Cuisinart. :-) I will try to add a finished photo later.
Like many bonsai people, Jeker likes to draw illustrations of what he envisions the final tree to be but he uses Caligraphy brushes and he is really quick and they look good. When I try, they come out like stick figures.
Last photo is of Francios working on my Juniper. You can't see it but he carves until the tree really smokes. Good stuff.