25 Jan 2022
This is the ‘Chan’ character. Two reasons for doing this: 1st to do a test on the finalising milk treatment which should harden the surface. Last time I tried this the stone was not fully dry and so moisture was trapped underneath. It bloomed a horrible looking mould or algae which took a lot of fixing. This stone is an offcut from the stone mason’s skip. 2nd reason is to have a go at the engraving of letters. So far all my cutting has been in the relief style as taught at Lamayuru.
Start of final pass. It’s hard to see from the photo but the stone was washed off after last session. The Bath stone goes very pale when it’s been worked on but then goes back to its honey colour after being washed. This makes it easier to make decisions on how best to complete it. The initial motif should now be in its final shape.[link this post]
༄sessions #12 & #13
24 Jan 2022
Give it its ‘eyes’.
End of the second pass.[link this post]
23 Jan 2022
Not such a good photo at the end of the session. It was an overcast day so the natural light was low. It’s hard to see but the letters done today were ‘gu ru’ and a bit of ‘pa’.[link this post]
22 Jan 2022
Nearing the half-way point.[link this post]
21 Jan 2022
Slowly, slowly..[link this post]
20 Jan 2022
Started the second pass which is to define the main parts of the letters, leaving the fine detail for now, and getting down to near the final depth. Making the base all the same depth and flat is nearly as hard as the letters themselves. It is very pleasing to see the characters get near their final shapes and stand out this way, especially the shadows they cast.[link this post]
19 Jan 2022
There’s the really tricky letters cut. Should finish the first pass in the next session.[link this post]
18 Jan 2022
[link this post]
17 Jan 2022
Session #5. About 2/3rds of the way through the initial pass. It looks like it will need at least 3 passes. I’m going to guess that we’ll have a count of about 25 sessions by the end.
The central bar of the ‘dzra’ ཛྲ disintegrated the moment I went near it! There are pockets of unstable powder and also lumps of much harder and whiter crystalline stuff to negotiate. I was worried that this much bigger stone would be too heavy to work with in the way I’ve learned but it’s proving just about do-able.
The ME situation is that there is usually a ‘post exertional malaise’ after activity. Today’s recovery from the session was unusually long - zonked for around 2 hours. Might have to shorten the sessions to sustain the work.[link this post]
16 Jan 2022
[link this post]
Session #4. The second letter ‘ah’ has the same radical as the ‘om’ before it but has a subscript vowel mark too. Not sure why it needs that as radicals have an integral ‘ah’ sound. More strange is it has two dots after it. I have asked about them and apparently it’s something to do with transcribing from Sanskrit! I used to think they were a kind of repeat mark but not so. I’ve put some time into learning the alphabet but can’t claim to read or speak Tibetan. I could get by in Ladakhi for a summer, but that was long ago now.
15 Jan 2022
Session #3 - first time of doing one of these decorative motifs. I’ve often admired them in printed texts. Also new to me are the punctuation ‘tsek’ dots between letters. Whatever the rules are about whether a letter gets a tsek or not elludes me! We’ll have a ༔ repeat mark at the end too :) I have done those ones before.[link this post]
14 Jan 2022
Stone cut and collected. Design transferred. sessions #1 & #2 - work begins.
Some background on Padmasambhava
His mantra is ‘om ah hum benza guru pema siddhi hum’.
༄༅༎ༀ༌ཨཱཿ ཧཱུྃ༌བཛྲ༌གུ༌རུ༌པདྨ༌སིདྡྷི༌ཧཱུྃ༔[link this post]
all mantra posts