Mindhue Studio

Printmaking, conceptual and installation art

Wooden Random Walks

And my obsession with random processes continues. Using basswood strips, dice, glue and five colors of wood stain, I’m playing around with randomness again, but trying, this time, to create an aesthetic sensibility with the process. I’m hoping that the natural material and earth colors will soften the hard edges of the concept and create little lyrical creations. I don’t know, but I’m pretty happy with these so far:

They’re anywhere from 5″ to 14″ wide. The fewer segments, the shorter, of course.

To create these, I roll three dice: one eight-sided, one six-sided and one ten-sided. The eight-sided die tells me how long the segment is in inches, the six-sided die tells me the color of the segment, and the ten-sided die tells me if I should stop, if the die shows “0”. I cut out the series of segments, stain them the correct colors, then construct the random path by spinning the segment and using the resulting alignment. The three completely natural paths were done before I decided to stain the pieces.

I might change the die I use to choose the length, just for funsies, but lengths from 1″ to 8″ work well for these. The stains I’m using are Ebony, English Chestnut, Provincial, Early American and Colonial Maple, with #6 reserved for natural wood. The whole piece is then coated in tung oil for protection. The craftsmanship is a little off, but these are basically maquettes. There’s plenty of time for hardcore joinery as they progress.