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PostPosted: Sat Dec 26, 2015 11:37 pm 
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I started to write a post apologizing for my use of the terms "right" and "wrong"... then I deleted it all in favor of reinforcing what I really think.

I know that shaping is ultimately subjective, and different strokes for different folks and all. I also know that in my given examples I was trying to accomplish a certain grace and flow to the shaping, and when the pipes were finished, I did not end up with what I wanted. For what I was trying to accomplish, I shaped them wrong.

I suspect that if you poll the top pipemakers of the world regarding my examples, they would come to the same conclusion that I did; That the corrected shapes are better than the original. Sure, it would just be opinions... but it's professional opinions.

That's my professional opinion.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 27, 2015 10:54 am 
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I know that I am getting the benefit of heart felt and hard gained experience here, and these forums are a wonderful source of practical information.
I am extremely grateful for the generosity that many of you show with your advice and the display of your work and your advice on techniques.
I have even been able to appreciate some of the aesthetics espoused here, but ultimately, I must be the judge of my own work.
I also have the advantage of being retired and having the limited aim of developing a self paying hobby rather than making a living, but am not overly concerned if that never happens. Criticisms based on the commercial viability of my efforts tend to go over my head.
As I participate more in this forum, I am also developing a sense of the personalities of the other pipe makers, and I can weigh opinions with more reference.
I will try not to buck the trend and overly frustrate you gentlemen, but being 70 years old and having worked as an ED physician for 36 years, and having been a pipe maker before the Internet, I will continue to have my curmudgeonly moments.
DocAitch

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 27, 2015 12:01 pm 
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Doc, maybe instead of thinking in terms of right and wrong applied to aesthetics it could be helpful to think in terms of successful and unsuccessful compositions. When somebody tells you your shaping is wrong it doesn't (usually) mean you did something evil; it means your pipe could look a while lot better if you changed some stuff.

I tend to default to photography metaphors when it comes to discussions of aesthetics, so here goes. You may have heard of the "rule of thirds" that, among other things, basically says don't put the horizon halfway down the image; it looks better a third of the way up or down. The photographer doesn't see this because he is blinded by his emotional investment in and proximity to the image. Maybe the he remembers how awesome it felt to see the sunset and is happy with the sharpness and exposure off his image--translate this to pipemaking and you have someone who's proud of his pipe, which is shiny and had nice grain; some of the MICRO details are distracting him from seeing how the overall picture comes together because he's too close to his own work.

Someone comes along and tells him his composition is awkward and unbalanced feeling and that he should try using the rule of thirds. The photographer, who is now butt-hurt, responds "but it's my art!" And his friends, impressed with the fact that he got some of the micro details right, keep patting him on the back and telling him he's the next Ansel Adams. But anyone who studies photography can't help but doing a Picard facepalm.

The fact is, until he has made THOUSANDS of images, the beginning photographer needs to pay extra attention to developing his sense of composition, as that's the hardest part to see and one of the most obvious to others if it it's done wrong. In this case wrong does not mean "bad," it means "poorly executed." Any suggestions from more seasoned/experienced photographers (pipemakers?) are simply tips that would bring balance, flow, and a cohesive vision to the composition.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 27, 2015 8:59 pm 
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DocAitch wrote:
I will continue to have my curmudgeonly moments.


That describes pretty much everyone here, myself included. So, you're in good company.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 28, 2015 4:58 pm 
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Again, please know that I am not offended. I recognize that a good number of the pipe makers on this forum are true artists who have made large numbers of beautiful pipes, and while I do appreciate the discussion of aesthetics and am incorporating those concepts in my own work, I have spent my working life in a profession where one, if sufficiently observant, learns that "never" and "always", "right" and "wrong" are judgments that don't work well in actuality.
Having worked in the retail tobacco, pipes and cigar trade for a while in the 1960s and 70s, I remember that I and my partners were repeatedly astounded by that on which people chose to spend their money, so I tend to discount "salability".
I never reached a point where something that I made was sought by true connoisseurs, so that is a level from which I cannot speak.
I suspect that a number of participants in this forum can speak from that level, and I am gradually learning who they are. A larger number of members are proficient pipe makers who have knowledge of techniques which are quite valuable to me, and I am grateful for their sharing.
Thank you for your replies, I learn something new every time I consult this forum.
DocAitch

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 28, 2015 6:25 pm 
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The wrong medicine = no cure This is more obvious than the wrong line = less flow and improvement enhances visual effect and sales also.The opinion of the pro is as valuable, as a test, to point to better outcomes. I feel you will grasp the whole, very soon!!!


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 29, 2015 12:38 am 
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That was fuckin' near a Haiku. :thumbsup:

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 24, 2016 9:36 pm 
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LatakiaLover wrote:


Image


um, is this still available?


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:23 pm 
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Location: Kansas City, USA
I'm not sure what the shelf life is for those things, but 2008 would probably be pushin' it.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:27 pm 
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LatakiaLover wrote:
I'm not sure what the shelf life is for those things, but 2008 would probably be pushin' it.


eye'd take the chance, send it my way!!


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 1:46 am 
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Do they take trade-ins, you think?

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 23, 2016 9:32 pm 
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Wow, I know now I don't want to post my pipes on this forum. I'm sure all of mine are wrong and my "noob" pipes will be spotted. Its not scuba gear or surgical equipment. its a pipe. I was already afraid I spelled stumell wrong or I used bad grammar. Now im worried about something I enjoy being wrong. Besides I like one of the wrong ones better in your pics anyway. Took a long time to get the courage to ask noob questions in a forum full of professionals. Maybe you did it wrong.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:43 am 
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It took me months to put one of mine in the Gallery, but it is worth it. Just reading the Gallery critiques is an education, and every time I drill a stummel or work a stem, I have all that critique in my head, not only from my own pipes, but from all of the presentations.
This forum is unlike any other concerning pipe making. If you want oohs and aahs every time you present a pipe, there are other forums. If you want to learn how to make a pipe, this is the place.
DocAitch

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-Charles Hollyday, pipe maker, reluctant mentor, and curmudgeon
" Never show an idiot an unfinished pipe!"- same guy


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:33 pm 
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Ditto to what Doc said!

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 24, 2016 4:12 pm 
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I'll expand on what Doc said. This forum is not primarily comprised of consumers, it is primarily for those practicing the craft. By default, we are more nit picky than the average pipe enthusiast. We see things that others sometimes don't, and we are our own biggest critics. Easom, I urge you to push through your feelings of being intimidated. Yes, your work will be scrutinized, and torn apart, but we will also teach you how to fix the very things we critique. If you want to make good pipes, this is where you want to be. A large portion of the successful and high grade American pipe makers started out right here, and many are still active or at least lurk regularly. Take that into account when you think about where you want to go from here.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2016 6:02 am 
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mightysmurf8201 wrote:
I'll expand on what Doc said. This forum is not primarily comprised of consumers, it is primarily for those practicing the craft. By default, we are more nit picky than the average pipe enthusiast. We see things that others sometimes don't, and we are our own biggest critics. Easom, I urge you to push through your feelings of being intimidated. Yes, your work will be scrutinized, and torn apart, but we will also teach you how to fix the very things we critique. If you want to make good pipes, this is where you want to be. A large portion of the successful and high grade American pipe makers started out right here, and many are still active or at least lurk regularly. Take that into account when you think about where you want to go from here.


what he said!

Even though I still hide anxiously in a corner every time I post a pipe here :-D

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2016 9:07 am 
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Easom wrote:
Wow, I know now I don't want to post my pipes on this forum. I'm sure all of mine are wrong and my "noob" pipes will be spotted. Its not scuba gear or surgical equipment. its a pipe. I was already afraid I spelled stumell wrong or I used bad grammar. Now im worried about something I enjoy being wrong. Besides I like one of the wrong ones better in your pics anyway. Took a long time to get the courage to ask noob questions in a forum full of professionals. Maybe you did it wrong.


Let me put this to you another way - used to be, I'd come around and ask questions about my pipes. Someone "in the know" would offer me a small set of changes to make- curve, proportion, whatever. And when I followed their advice, the pipe sold immediately. Time and again. So there's something to this, even if it's just "here's what pipe buyers want to see".

Carve and have fun, no one is judging you, truly no one cares what the hell you make, really. If keeping it private is going to keep it fun... keep it private I guess. But if you want to learn mo stuff fasta, then show some stuff off and let's talk about it.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2016 10:04 am 
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Sasquatch wrote:
and let's talk about it.


That makes it sound like this forum is some kind of self support group, pipemakers anonymous if you will :lol:

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2016 1:37 pm 
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So it seems to me that walt likes some styles of pipes more than others. I like the first pic lots more than the second. The drastic changes to me are two different styles and I prefer the first example in both sets of virtual comparisons.

I am not looking for oohs and aahs, I came to learn more of the machining end of pipe making. I just thought that saying most pipemakers make the shank angles wrong was a bit harsh. Like I said before the first pipe I sold looked totaly stupid and I was embarassed to even show it. Someone accidentally saw it and was drawn to it like a moth to a flame. He thought it was the most beautiful pipe he had ever seen. It was so bad i didnt even take pictures of it.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2016 3:20 pm 
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If you're embarrassed by a pipe, don't sell it. Wait until you have pipes you're proud of. All you have in this business is your reputation. Put your reputation on the line with pipes that you know are good and look good.

And someone above mentioned the idea that you need to know where the rules are before you break them. Most beginners produce pipes that look like a beginner produced them. And the shank angle is one of the easiest ways to tell (most of the time). The general rule is that pipes that follow a gentle S-curve are easier on the eyes. It's not about right or wrong, but about knowing how the visual effect works before you deviate from the norm.

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