Author Archives: Wizard of Eutopia

About Wizard of Eutopia

I am a 'eutopian' visionary philosopher who has temporarily abandoned his search for the precise meaning of 'Life, the Universe and Everything' and its ideal formulation, to spend the last 12 years writing a sprawling epic fantasy pentalogy called The Apples of Aeden; also building the domed ferrocement carved 'Dreamspace' of Cafe Eutopia, Kaiwaka, New Zealand; and writing Fantastic Ferrocement, A Passport to Eutopia, Passport to Creativity, The Nautilus Project and Icon of Ainenia; and building a carved 'Tree of Life' idea-creation game called Eutopia: the Game.

Focus, focus, focus…

The work goes on to get design details and techniques right and efficient… invented a couple of new ways to make sandcasting concrete rings for door and window frames; almost set up the hinge blacksmithing shed; made a square mesh bender, and more.

The vacuum sandcastle. .. this cuts a profile through packed damp sand and vacuums away the tailings…

This is the shorter square mesh bender. The bolt heads hook onto the rebar beside each strand to be bent and curls them around the tubing as the lever is pulled.

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A tiny home model in stone

I painted this stone I carved as a model and ‘wairua stone’ for the first dreamhaven ‘baby’ -for the grandsons… So when we’ve built it the stone can go in the earth bank behind perhaps… a kind of foundation stone… Hayley took a moment off the intricate stained glass window she has been making for the hobbit office…

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Base Camp established… a hobbit HQ

Hayley and I have been lining this tiny corner in the long sheds as a retreat, office, draughting and meditation room for dreamhaven… it’s only about 1.3 by 1.8 metres…

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Putting my energy where my heart is – hobbithavens Elfhaven and mokohavens

Thanks to the enthusiasm of Hayley who wants to build her own whare and learn ferro and other skills, I’ve dragged hobbithavens back to centre stage and the long-awaited ‘Moko whare’ aka grandsons’ hobbit haven in the woods, is happening. First we had to clear the back yard though. .. Autumn flame colours in tge leaves of the vine, and hot flames of cleanup… lining a hobbit office in a corner of the long sheds, and then we start… after a tangi and (paid!) writing stint with big brother john in Auckland, and a long-awaited party for his 75th. ..

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NOW We’re starting – grandkid’s den first

After much other setup, some relevant to building good Hobbity tiny homes, some less so, I’ve been re-awakened to the vision to start building DREAMHAVEN..

A young helper/apprentice has appeared and galvanised me to do it NOW… she will build her own tiny cabin after learning with me on this first one for my grandsons Eddie and Bruno (4 and 6, nearly).  Before they grow so much I’ll have to build it grownup size!

Follow this blog for updates:)

First we will set up the Yard at the back of Dreamspace. We’ll build it there and hiab it into place, hopefully the easiest way.

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Of Pumpkins and procrastination

Concrete creations lately have been mostly limited to ferrocement garden beds and pergolas (see www.fantasticferrocement.com) and my white cement casts of carvings at our Dreamspace Gallery (see www.dreamspace.nz) But I have been asked if I would build a pumpkin cabin, and I’ve done a concept drawing. It’s quite Hobbity… If the lady says do it, I will! But I will try to also get onto the first Dreamhaven cabin, the little one for the grandsons – before they get too old for it…

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Here’s Ortin, a little character from my fantasy epic, volume IV. He would like a pumpkin cabin, I reckon!

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Dream havens coming soon

Well it has been a while! I was away selling the Ark up north, and now I’m back in Gisborne and Dreamspace is getting closer to hosting the building of the first real live ‘hobbit’ haven. While I was away we lost the hobbithaven domain because my email peter at eutopia went west. So, I rethought and decided it’s a blessing in disguise, since our styles are not limited to a ‘hobbity’ look, but encompass Elven and Aedenic as well… and we have had the question of copyright about the name Hobbit, at least for a main name for it.

Watch this space – our first cabin will be a very ‘hobbity’ one, for the grandsons 🙂 We have been up the garden path so to speak, at the Gisborne environment centre, making the edging for their path and a spiral herb garden, and now hopefully a few raised beds…

There are some other projects ordered too. The sculptural ferrocement is in demand!

 

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Action at last – Hobbit haven has a base!

From my pecha kucha talk ‘Sailing to Eutopia – Dreamspaces built and imagined’,  (see  Youtube:

came this article, in the Gisborne Herald weekender supplement, 11/6/16.  The Hobbit havens will be built in the back yard of the Dreamspace Gallery and Workshops, then trucked to wherever they are wanted. The large workshop space means we can have a whole area for sandcasting, another for bandsawing lovely wood for fitting out the interiors,  plenty for storage, etc.

photo of my gisborne profile article REDUCED 11  june 2016

 

Thanks to Natasha who bravely interviewed me and managed to make something coherent of it (and who let me see it and tweak before publication). And the photographer – a nice young man who came, smiled, arranged doglets and wizards, and left. Of course, there were one or two minor factual corrections; mainly that of course the pictured playhut is not a true hobbit haven, as it isn’t curved and is very little…

 

 

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Another World and its houses

Apples of Aeden the epic now has an exciting offshoot: the study and replication of Aedenyan architecture! This model I’m working on (excuse the roughness but I had to share now) is the first attempt to materialise it here on Edartha… A traditional Aedenyan starfish-shaped cottage. More to come I hope! These will soon start appearing on Earth, the Lady willing. A good complement to the Hobbit style I think. An Elvish influence as well…

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Wood is good

What would Middle Earth look like without trees, or its houses without wood? So, I have been beachcombing and using a bandsaw

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to make planks and cut curved things, and soon the first proper Haven will be begun, and wood will figure largely inside it… I have tried out some wood shingles too on Bruno’s little playhut here at Appletree Haven…

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cut from totara driftwood. I love them though they use up a lot of wood! They are meant to overlap each other by two thirds – hard to do that!  I saved some of the best totara for a frame for a painting. Here’s a small frame I did – an ‘Altar of art’ frame as I call them. Linseed oil on poplar (I think) driftwood.

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So hobbit havens will be nice and woody… I was really inspired about wood craftsmanship and how much loved those who do it well can be when I found out about Sam Maloof.

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See this documentary about him and his work – it’s long but charming:

His signature rocking chairs sold for $40,000 US in his lifetime – now they’re more!

So there’s hope for me to get hobbithavens built and sold and then more can be made until there’s a trail of them for those who love Middle Earth and Hobbits – and wood!

Finally, a section of old (150-odd year rings) totara log turning into an outside table:

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And grandson Bruno walking the plank with crocodile Jemma below. Some kind of pine – the planks are drying now, a peaceful use to be found soon:)

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Here they are painting the big round door:

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