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nonprofit composer + artist • she/her • loves drums • advocate for emotional literacy in music • meep • EN/FR OK

Annette Singh @Troisnyx

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Lancashire, UK

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From playing the bodhrán... to outright PAINTING one

Posted by Troisnyx - February 8th, 2014


This was Seán's bodhrán that I did. 18", tunable, hence the screws on the shell. It started out beautifully but worsened dramatically as it went along.

We're having it sanded down tomorrow.... I'm going to have to start over. It's just.... I do feel a little disappointed, because I believed in the finished work, and it turned out horribly, very much unlike what I imagined. Is it really good to believe in myself...?

Here are some pictures of the work in progress:

3805804_139188202472_DSC_0011.jpg

3805804_139188212621_DSC_0017.jpg3805804_139188216813_DSC_0021.jpg3805804_139188219091_DSC_0022.jpg3805804_139188221641_DSC_0023.jpg3805804_139188224773_DSC_0034.jpg3805804_139188227121_DSC_0037.jpg3805804_139188229511_DSC_0038.jpg3805804_139188231982_DSC_0039.jpg


Comments (5)

Maybe it's just not geometrically perfect with the pattern. That's impossible to draw without taking measurements.
You'd need a ruler, and you'd need to add periodic marks, and it would need to all be evenly spaced. Then you would also need to mark highest and lowest points above and below every mark. Then you'd have to perfectly follow the marks while drawing and keep it same pressure on the brush, and same density and etc.

I think it's just too difficult and requires too much effort to do properly.

Funny enough, I did a try of the exact same pattern on a flat surface -- and not only did I get the proportions okay, I even got the thickness right! I tested the paints on a box of colour pencils (it was a light wood), and it looked amazing. Who knows what will happen when sanded down.....

Truth be told, if this has to be done with a ruler, so be it. I'll do it. I want to do it. See, Seán's dad played the bodhrán, and he had a 20", one of few that exist -- it was a craftsman's piece, but the thing is, it was done with love. Seán's instrument would be differently designed, granted, but it would still be in-keeping with him inheriting his father's passion and skill for the bodhrán. I'm no craftsman, but I wanted to try... I wanted to believe that this would be possible. I took the task upon myself because one, I wanted to believe in myself and what I felt I would be capable of, and two, because I love him.

Is it really good to not believe in yourself? Anyway, I don't know about your drafting process, but I would suggest first painting the design on a strip of paper to figure out what works good and how to execute it before tackling the bodhrán.

I did precisely that, before marking the bodhrán shell with a white pencil. Both Seán and I were happy with the pattern, and when we both looked at the white pencil, we were ever so hopeful that this would turn out to be beautiful. In fact, on the way home yesterday night, I was so excited to see the finished product -- this was me, believing in myself, believing in what I felt I could do.

And even with that, I failed.

Haha these pictures are at the top of my Facebook feed right now, I thought that last one was a bloodstained blanket at first glance!

That gold and white is a pretty combination on the instrument, well done. Looks Celtic-inspired, really nice work (or whatever, I just searched for Celtic designs and saw some similarities with the intertwining loops and stuff.)

Seems like you're quite busy at the moment, what with all these pictures of enamel paint pots everywhere. Don't worry, I'm sure sanding it down will forgive all mistakes, and then you can unleash your creativity upon it once more!

Take care, Troisnyx.

-Potent

I hope by "sand down" you mean remove the paint, because otherwise I imagine pouring sand or something grainy all over the bodhran..?

Remove the paint -- to 'sand down' in this case is to rub with sandpaper, either to smoothen a surface or to remove paintwork.

I'm going to try to sound like an old wise man here: Believing in oneself does not prevent failure or guarantee success. I understand that this is frustrating. I am extremely frustratable. I really like drawing and making artsy stuff, but I get frustrated very quickly - even when things are going well. If you want to do this, then step back, take a breath, and try it again. That is what believing in yourself empowers you to do.

Thanks. Considering I'm doing the same for my own bodhrán -- sanding it down and painting it again -- I'm stepping back for a few days from painting work.