ponedeljek, 26. september 2016

MEDVODE

Past weekend I spent at VII. International bonsai exhibition in Medvode, Slovenia. The exhibition was organized by the Slovenian bonsai club (Slovenski bonsaj klub); first time in 12 years I was not the main organizer of this event, so for me this was just relaxing and enjoying time! Even though I was a moderator on demonstrations, this was a completely different experience as it was in past six editions of this event. After more than 10 years of presidency in 2014 I resigned as president of the club, to concentrate on my school and my trees.  After almost two years without president Nik Rozman took over. And he did a great job organizing the exhibition; even though at different and smaller venue than in previous years, the event was a success! The quality of the trees was good, we had a lot of visitors, the demos were interesting.

Minuli konec tedna sem preživel na VII. Mednarodni razstavi bonsajev, ki jo je v Medvodah organiziral Slovenski bonsaj klub. Prvič v 12-ih letih nisem bil glavni organizator, tako da sem tokrat lahko zgolj sproščeno užival. Čeprav sem bil moderator na demonstracijah, je bilo to vseeno povsem drugačno doživetje, kot na prejšnjih šestih izvedbah razstave. Po več kot desetih letih predsedovanja, sem leta 2014 odstopil s te funkcije, da bi se lažje posvetil moji šoli in drevesom. Po skoraj dveh letih brez predsednika v klubu, je vodstvo prevzel Nik Rozman. In kot organizator razstave se je izkazal: čeprav je bila na drugi in manjši lokaciji, kot v preteklih letih, je dogodek uspel. Kvaliteta dreves je bila dobra, imeli smo veliko obiskovalcev, demonstracije so bile zanimive.

I prepared three of my trees for exhibition; Juniperus chinensis 'Itoigawa' known as Pelican got one of the nominations, but probably the most great and emotional award I ever "win" was the award for years of my work in the club. This was a total surprise for me! Award and recognition from my fellow-bonsaists in Slovenian bonsai club means me a lot! We grew together as artists and we developed this art in our country. Thank you!

Za razstavo sem pripravil tri moja drevesa: Kitajski brin znan kot Pelikan je bil med nominiranimi. Toda verjetno največja in najbolj čustvena nagrada, kar sem jih kdaj prejel, je bilo priznanje za moje dolgoletno delo v klubu. Popolno presenečenje! Priznanje s strani kolegov bonsajistov v Slovenskem bonsj klubu mi res veliko pomeni! Skupaj smo odraščali kot bonsajisti in skupaj to umetnost v Sloveniji razvijali. Hvala!

Thank you guys!

Pelican prepared for exhibition in my tokonoma

Picea abies in tokonoma, before it was taken to the exhibition

My third entry: Pinus sylvestris

As I wrote before, the level of exhibited trees was quite high, maybe the exhibition would be even better if there would be 10 trees less on the shelves, selection even more strict, but this is just my opinion. Here are some photos from the exhibition and just some trees I liked the most.

Kot sem napisal že zgoraj, nivo razstavljenih dreves je bil dokaj visok, mogoče bi bila razstava še boljša, če bi bilo na policah deset dreves manj, selekcija še nekoliko ostrejša. Toda to je le moje mnenje. Tu je nekaj fotografij z razstave in le nekaj fotografij dreves, ki so mi bila najbolj všeč.




Pinus pentaphylla 'Zuisho' by Rajko Podgornik

Pinus thunbergii by Sandor Papp

Juniperus chinensis 'Itoigawa' by Rajko Podgornik

Prunus mahaleb by Aleš Zavodnik




See you all in two years! 

Se vidimo čez dve leti!

torek, 06. september 2016

MUGO PINE

Finally time for another post has arrived! :-) Work in atelier doesn't stop and some time, after all hard work, is hard to find a motivation for post. I hope you'll still come back to check for new one's and I'll try to post more regularly. Here is a story of another mugo pine, Pinus mugo, yamadori from Slovenian Alps. Although I personally prefer Pinus sylvestris over mugo, this time I was attracted by this ancient tree, collected by Miha Oberstar, and so the tree came in to my possession. After one year of acclimatization (with mugo pines one can't be to careful and to patient) the tree was re-potted into first bonsai pot. The inclination was corrected, but because of roots the planned front didn't fit in to the pot right. 

Končno sem našel čas za nov prispevek. :-) Nenehno delo v ateljeju včasih vzame enregijo in motivacijo za nove zapise. Upam, da boste vseeno tu in tam preverili, če je kaj novega, jaz pa se bom trudil pisati bolj redno. Tu je zgodba o novem ruševju, Pinus mugo, jamadori iz naših gora. Čeprav imam raje rdeče bore kot ruševje, me je to starodavno drevo, ki ga je izkopal Miha Oberstar pritegnilo, in tako je pristalo v moji zbirki. Po enem letu aklimatizacije (z ruševjem človek nikoli ne more biti preveč previden in potrpežljiv) je bilo drevo presajeno v prvo bonsajsko posodo. Popravljen je bil nagib, zaradi korenin pa načrtovana sprednja stran ni na pravem mestu v posodi.  

Pinus mugo, August 2016, before first styling

After another year of resting and 5 years after collecting, the tree was ready for first styling. I studied this tree for more than a year, so there were no dilemmas about design. Here is the quick sketch I drew. And then the work started.

Po še enem letu počitka in 5 let po izkopu je bilo drevo pripravljeno na prvo obdelavo. Drevo sem v več kot enem letu dodobra preštudiral, tako da dvomov o dizajnu ni bilo. Na hitro sem pred oblikovanjem narisal skico in delo se je začelo.


After the needles were cut I lift the main trunk and fixed it with rebar. Then I wired all the branches and put them into position. At the end I cleaned the natural shari and shaped the jin. 

Potem, ko sem postrigel stare iglice sem dvignil glavno deblo in ga učvrstil z železno palico. Potem sem veje ožičil in jih usmeril v željeni položaj. Na koncu sem še očistil naravni šari in oblikoval džin.



I am pleased with the result! This will be a great bonsai! Working on this centuries old tree was a pure joy. Now the aftercare will be important and in few years the root-ball will be shortened so that the tree will fit in a proper pot (something like as in the sketch). Meanwhile the crown will mature and the tree will be ready for show! :-) 

Z rezultatom sem nadvse zadovoljen! To bo lep bonsaj! Delo na tem več kot sto let starem drevesu je bilo čisti užitek. Zdaj bo pomembna oskrba po oblikovalskem šoku; v nekaj letih bo koreninska gruda zmanjšana tako, da bo primerna za dobro posodo (nekaj takega, kot na skici). Med tem bo dozorela krošnja in drevo bo pripravljeno za razstavo! :-)

Pinus mugo, August 2016, after first styling

P.S.: New season of school is here. We'll meet in Wednesday, 7. September. All students of TORA international bonsai school and all who want to became one are welcomed! 

P.S.: Novo šolsko leto je tu. Dobimo se v sredo, 7. septembra. Dobrodošli vsi študentje šole TORA in vsi, ki bi to radi postali!

sobota, 11. junij 2016

MUGO

Pinus mugo is not my favorite species of pines. I prefer to work on Pinus sylvestris because one can gain more definition on them. High mountain pines (Mugo) will always look a little uncombed and sturdy. But nevertheless, mugo pines are among great species for bonsai. This particular one has been collected out of the concrete block in the city. Tomaž R. was the collector and he took care of the tree for two years afterwards. In October 2014 he brought the tree to the TORA studio and after inspection we set the plan: first we had to set the main line of the trunk as it was completely straight.

Ruševje ni moja najljubša vrsta bora. Raje delam na rdečih borih, ker lahko na njih dosežemo boljšo definicijo. Gorski bor (Pinus mugo) bo vedno izgledal nekoliko nepočesan in grčav. A vseeno ruševje sodi med odlične vrste za bonsaj. Tale iz naše zgodbe prihaja iz betonskega korita v mestu. Izkopal ga je Tomaž R. in naslednji dve leti tudi skrbel zanj. Oktobra 2014 ga je prinesel v TORA atelje in po analizi smo naredili načrt: najprej smo morali narediti glavno linijo debla, saj je bil ta popolnoma raven.

Pinus mugo, October 2014 before start of work

Pinus mugo, October 2014, after bending the trunk

Everything went OK, and the first step on the tree was completed. After two years of recovery, we removed all the wires and rafia, the trunk stood in set position. Now second step can begin. Gašper cut the old needles and cleaned some jins, then we made the selection of branches. I wired them all and put them into position. No detailed wiring yet, this will be done in third step next year.

Vse se je izšlo brez težav in prvi korak je bil končan. Po dveh letih smo odstranil vso žico in rafijo in deblo je obstalo v poziciji. Zdaj se je lahko začel drugi korak. Gašper je porezal vse stare iglice in očistil nekaj džinov, potem smo napravili selekcijo vej. Vse sem ožičil in jih skrivil v pozicijo. Podrobno žičenje pride na vrsto ob tretjem koraku prihodnje leto.
 
Pine has a great nebari

After we removed all the wires and rafia, the line stood in position

Gašper working

Pinus mugo, Jun 2016, after second step ... to be continued

Now the skeleton of future bonsai is set. The tree has really great nebari and also movement is now good. In the future some more branches will be cut and of course, the tree will be repoted into a bonsai pot. This will become a nice bonsai in next few years!

Okostje bodočega bonsaja je zdaj postavljeno. Drevo ima zares odličen nebari in tudi gibanje je zdaj dobro. V prihodnosti bo porezanih še več vej in drevo bo seveda presajeno v bonsajsko posodo. V nekaj letih bo to lep bonsaj!

sreda, 08. junij 2016

SLOVAKIA AND LUBOŠ

This past weekend I was a guest of the Slovak bonsai association at their annual national exhibition. The exhibition was organized by local club Trnava in the city of Hlohovec (Hawthorn city). Trees were put on exhibition in an old monastery. I was honored to work with members of SBA, together we styled a few nice trees which now have a bright future. As usually Gašper helped me a lot. He extremely improved his skills in a year and a half since he is apprentice in TORA school.  

Ta konec tedna sem bil gost Slovaške bonsajske zveze na njihovi letni nacionalni razstavi. Razstavo je v Hlohovcu (da, mesto ima ime po glogu), v starem samostanu, organiziral klub iz Trnave. Bilo mi je v veselje in čast delati s člani njihove zveze, skupaj smo oblikovali nekaj lepih dreves, ki jih čaka lepa prihodnost. Kot običajno mi je bil v veliko pomoč Gašper, ki je v zadnjem dobrem letu in pol v šoli TORA izjemno napredoval.

Hlohovec is a historical Slovak town


Bohunice Nuclear Power plant in the distance 


The inner courtyard of Franciscan Monastery. Here all workshops were held


One of the exhibiting rooms was in the basement of the Monastery


I was especially impressed by the atmosphere at the exhibition - relaxed, without competitive approach 'who is the best, who is right' ... Just enjoying the work on trees or simply by watching them. By this approach also results will come: there is still enough place for improvement, as usually especially with better material. Bottom line: Juraj Szabo, as president of the SBA and organizers from local club did a great job and I am glad that I was your guest. Thank you guys!

Posebej se me je dotaknilo ozračje na razstavi - sproščeno, brez nenehnega dokazovanja, kdo je boljši, kdo ima prav, zgolj uživanje ob delu z drevesi ali samo ob opazovanju. Ob takšnem pristopu bodo prišli tudi rezultati; prostora za napredovanje je še veliko, tako kot običajno predvsem pri izboru materijala. A pod črto: Juraj Szabo, kot predsednik SBA in organizatorji iz lokalnega kluba so opravili odlično delo in vesel sem, da sem bil lahko vaš gost. Hvala za vse!

Trees on exhibition

The best tree on the exhibition by my opinion. Larix, by Milan Roskoš

Fagus crenata

There was also nice suiseki exhibition

New talent contest also take place at the event. Here are the candidates before contest, Juraj Szabo, president of SBA giving them some instructions


Talents (some of them) in action


Also at workshop we had a pleasure to work on one of the materials from NTC. Karol Klema wired this Pinus mugo (Photo courtesy: Karol Klema)

And the result. Not bad for first styling on ordinary nursery plant

 Gašper did a great job with helping me at workshop

This Oleander was a styling challenge...

And the result. Good job by Rasto Moravčik

Rasto inspecting the results of his work

This mugo pine was the best material on the workshop


After exhibition our journey was not over - from Hlohovec we headed to north of Czech republic, to Dvor Kralovy, home of Luboš Škoda, great bonsai-potter. Last autumn we started to discuss about production of special pot for my half-cascade juniper. Even though I prefer to pot my trees into the classical pots, I get the feeling that the juniper will shine in Luna-shape pot. So we exchanged some views, measurement and the plan was set. But the work took more time as planned. Complex manufacturing process, many layers of clay, drying and final firing at a high temperature took all winter, but the product is exactly as I imagined it!

Po koncu razstave se je potovanje za nas šele začelo - iz Hlohovca smo se odpravili na sever Češke, v Dvor Kralovy, k priznanemu izdelovalcu bonsajskih posod - Lubošu Škodi. Že lani jeseni sva se začela dogovarjati o izdelavi posebne posode za moj polkaskadni brin. Čeprav načeloma drevesa sadim v bolj ali manj klasične posode, pa se mi zdi, da bo to drevo zaživelo šele v lunasti posodi. Nekaj izmenjav mnenj, meritev in načrt je bil pripravljen. Le delo je zahtevalo več časa, kot sva sprva načrtovala. Zapleten postopek izdelave iz mnogih plasti gline, sušenja in končno peke pri visoki temperaturi, je vzel vso zimo, ampak izdelek je točno tak, kot sem si ga zamislil!

Juniper is now growing in this pot

One of the ideas we discussed with Luboš

This was the final idea, Luna-shaped ceramic pot




At the end of January Luboš send me the fisrt photos of finished pot, still drying. We agreed to go with firing!

When we arrived, Luboš take me to the workshop almost immediately and expected my reaction with interest. The pot was even better than I expect and it will complement the tree perfectly! I can't wait to re-pot the juniper next spring!

Ob prihodu me je Luboš takoj povabil v svojo delavnico in z zanimanjem pričakoval mojo reakcijo - posoda je boljša, kot sem pričakoval in bo perfektno dopolnjevala drevo! Komaj čakam, da brin naslednjo pomlad presadim vanjo! 

Dvor Kralovy, main square

Luboš showing me on of his amazing pots. I can imagine one of my Prunus mahaleb in it, oh yea!

Gašper and Luboš in Luboš's workshop

Here it is: perfect pot for my juniper!


Luboš show us some more of his amazing pots, as he said: "One can succeed only with high quality and different style." And he succeeds in both: his pots are really quality and something special for sure. Luboš, thanks again!

Luboš nam je z veseljem pokazal še nekaj svojih izjemnih izdelkov; kot je povedal sam: "Prepričaš lahko le z visoko kakovostjo in svojim slogom." In oboje je Lubošu uspelo - njegove posode so visoko kvalitetne in gotovo nekaj posebnega. Luboš, še enkrat hvala za trud!