03.03.12

Welding School on Anacis Island will be my destination from 03.03.12 full time for 6-9 months ~ff

Advertisements

I have been working

….steadily at learning the shop environ where of utmost importance and priority is safety for a tradesman or tradeswoman who should rarely be injured because what comes first is a ‘focused concentration’ for the task at hand regardless whether the effort required is great or small ‘we’ have a moral responsibility to respect the equipment and how we as artists/trades people and fellow workers inter act with the equipment at the beginning I really didn’t know how I would fair yet now I feel I am gaining some comfort if you can imagine working in a place that is darker than a room with natural light and heated in one of three rooms in winter….

When the garage door goes up and daylight comes streaming into the shop it is a reward like the hot zing of candied ginger on your tongue ….there is a palpable sense of accomplishment after having worked three hours in the morning and a few more in the afternoon the next best thing to do is build in a little ‘bounty’ in order to honour the physical work accomplished and the sense of feeling productive towards the end of the day is much like the rising of small bubbles to the surface now you can take a breather or two and feel somewhat complete and done although seven or more projects still await their end we press on while deadlines loom large clients call expectant of results after they have placed their trust in your ability to fabricate and assemble a useable commodity it is your assignment to deliver whether you are winning all along or fall down too many times to count. —Freyja Frigg

Arlette

It is week three or four?

‘Arlette’ is tired. She is having her ‘soul’ replenished and renewed. Her steel tanks came first and then ‘Arlette’ built around them. Two large heavy fuel tanks that are ‘done’ ready for removal and replaced by custom made aluminum tanks that are built to hold the maximum amount of fuel for her. Heavy vs light, immoveable vs mobile, it is a natural progression to go to aluminum so she can live happily ever after.

I wonder how it will lighten her load? Will she sail on easier and swifter than ever? Jim the boss man and Olie the whistling welder spear head the whole venture. It is a challenge that not many would take on. A very particular kind of job that requires a good amount of thinking and understanding about three-dimensional space accompanied by skill in fabricating and the physical and mental strength and fortitude to pull it off.

My job is to assist, to make it easier. To pass the ‘surgeon’ a zip cutter, a light, to hold a pipe wrench, a tape measure then to clear the area of any debris and then change the zip disc. My child like curiosity gives me a buzz, to others I am an anomaly, a bit of a mystery.

To break the stern silence of this ‘brutish’ occupation as Jim calls it, is part of my undertaking while I work.  This realm is new territory for me and I like the challenge accompanied by discovery and adventure—it gives me new found energy to work really hard. The most important thing to me is that I remain willing to learn.

Underground shifting

At a cafe today in our Village, I was catching up with online digital tasks since the last two weeks I have been driving off Lulu Island to Annacis Island to attend piabschool. POW is a program for women who are interested in the trades. PIAB, UA 170‘s private school provides an opportunity for women to succeed in a career of their choice within the piping industry by offering excellent training in a supportive working environment in an industry where only 4% are women. From the get go I knew I wanted to weld. I still have 4 weeks to go and everyday I ask myself: is this what I want to study and work at in the years to come?

At Bean and Beyond in Steveston, in between checking websites and waiting for data transfer I read ART revolution by Lisa L. Cyr where she writes about transcending boundaries:

“From 1908-1914 two pioneers; Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque worked collaboratively in search of an alternative form of expression, a different approach to seeing and interpreting the world. With their efforts, Cubism, an artistic vision that allows for multiple  viewpoints to be shown simultaneously, was born…..In addition the Cubist movement gave birth to a more tactile approach to picture-making….under Cubist theory, pictorial reality became multidimensional expressed in multimedia format.”

I used to chide myself severely for not ever settling on a particular medium. It seemed I could not quell the desire to join together numerous elements to make a picture. I understood Marcel Duchamp‘s, Nude Descending Staircase since I had experienced fragmentation, culminating in 10 moves by the time I was 13. So Marcel’s depiction captured well-known feelings that I had contained for most of my childhood. That life was dubious and unstable accompanied by a haunting notion of unpredictability.  Searching for meaning in a world of chance occupied me which later helped develop full-blown existentialism that I chose as my world view for a period of time.

Underground shifting is about perceptives in motion where things are placed in a random order to create something new or unknown. It is subjective to the last degree which is largely what gives it appeal. I end up feeling that when change occurs in life it might look somewhat like this. Non-sensical and heavy laden with meaning and nothing in particular at the same time, it is somewhat unsettling as change occurs and often mentally painful.

With 13 other women I sit in the shape of a circle to redefine or refine a path, a way that I have been going. There are individuals I have met at the school that have given me a strong sense of wanting justice in the labour movement for men and women and have acted according to their convictions to achieve lasting change. I am challenged and inspired to look further than my immediate path by listening to a person’s story.

At the end of the day it may not all make sense like Underground shifting yet what is important is to stay on the path even if you are on the loose shoulder slipping a little. Eventually you will notice an order occurring and you will hit a point when you see clearly an isometric design in the midst of frayed disorder.

Immortal Metals

Just down a bit from studio 217 located at ‘The Compound’— on blessed land where the Steveston Harbour Authority holds the keys— is Immortal Metals

most days in the sandbox with the usual sand and zinc blasting out at impossible speeds with heat so sweetly hot you thank your lucky stars that you get out alive at the end of the 45 minute gruel

is where Steveston artifacts, everything metal that goes with a boat is metalized and/or sand blasted to become a thing of beauty that will last well into the 21st century

next up you have a cig or small toke with your coffee break while Frenchie sweeps up a bit and moves some heavy stuff around, he looks for an old butt to suck on while Blackwater Tom adjusts his oxygen levels marveling out how the hot grains of sand filter in through every conceivable fold of his oily get up

Immortal Metals is owned by a legend of Steveston with a number of beauties (sailing vessels) that many envy, although Apoxy Al would beg to differ

all of the folks there to my mind—are immortal since they dabble with their own mortality daily—fishing, welding, blasting, drilling and sanding the hell out of their livelihood—espesicially the women who run the place, I think they have the hardest job — I know they are up for sainthood and maybe one or two of the men