Verticle Artisans Blog

Catch up on all the latest news, tips, and tricks.

Nathan Giffin has been creating hand-carved decorative concrete for ten years. His calm demeanor and soft-spoken voice cannot disguise the passion he has for his craft. Within minutes of meeting him you are swept into a new realm of possibilities, that of ‘Sculpted Vertical Concrete.’


Nathan is a pioneer in this relatively new artform. Just a look at his website gallery and video snippets transforms your thinking about concrete. His specialty is unique, but what he brings to this specialty is original and distinctive. His style is matchless in the industry.


He was first introduced to sculpted concrete by a friend who showed him photos of work his father was doing in South Africa. “When I was introduced to the craft it was very rough and crude. I was hooked immediately. But I knew it needed to be massaged before introduced into the Chicago area.”

"The Wedding Tree " The latest invention in Living Tree Art

I recently recieved a letter from Earl on his latest invention and thought to pass it along.

Bob Ross, the famous painter on PBS calls them, “happy accidents.”   It’s when an unplanned move in art creates an unexpected and favorable result.

With less than three weeks left to go before my solo art show at Zero Degrees Gallery in Marquette, MI starting in March, I was quite disappointed to learn that there was no way I could get seven, healthy potted plants that would cover the pots in time for the show.  I had already spent two weeks making the Living Tree Art piece meant to hold the pots in rings.  I had no choice but to go faux against the very namesake of Living Tree Art.

After spending several hours over the course of two days searching Michael’s Crafts store, I spent $120 on faux plants and seven, 4″ Styrofoam balls.  When I got home, I cut all the leaves and flowers into individual pieces and stuck them all into the Styrofoam balls that were now painted a blotchy dark brown and green.  Then I jammed the Styrofoam balls onto the pin posts meant to hold the rings for the intended pots.

I decided to name it “Wedding Tree.” The display is meant for the wedding table that holds the gifts.   The flowers on this Wedding Tree could just as easily be made to match the tone and color of the bridesmaids’ dresses, or colored appropriately for a completely different social event where say, fall colors might work.  The permutations in design possibilities for the trees are endless. Most important of all, making these trees might open doors for a welder looking for some spare income while creating opportunity for florists to entertain an untapped market for Living Tree Art (with a twist of course).

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Earls Full Article --- Earls Petunias

Earl Petunias-1

Earl Petunias-2

Earl Petunias-3

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Living Tree Art with Earl Senchuk makes Canadian Debut

Earl continues to impress the media as the eye candy he calls Living Tree Art begins its journey through the pages of several home and garden magazines.  in this latest addition of Ontarios Garden Central, Melissa Cornwell does a special write up on Earls latest living tree art.

 

 

 There are a lot of factors to making a tree and all the secrets to Earls methods are found in his course. Living Tree Art 

Earls plans for this year also include another class fabricating much smaller trees, Perhaps even small enough to fit on top of a table.

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Spare Room Wine Cellar Project Goes Vertical Concrete --- A Nice Wine Tasting Area

This spare room was approximately 14 x 19 and had very a large ceiling height.   This simply means that the possibilities are endless.    In this case we decided to go with the groin ceiling.    this option enabled us to capture a very nostalgic look and stay true to an old world theme.    Most wine cellars offer great racking systems tiled floors and marble countertops.    in this case we chose to bring back some of the more traditional building materials  such as reclaimed barn lumber plaster and stone.    our 1st step was to install the groin ceiling.    After the walls were framed in the ceiling was in place lighting elements of power were added.    Each location of stone was predetermined by the client.    Color and style are also choices that were determined.    Once the concrete was sculpted on the wall then it was stained and painted for the finish and final effect.    We have to faux finish rocks before we put the plaster down  because after the plaster has been applied the processes are a great deal harder.

 This look has been attempted by many finishers over the decades  it has achieved marginal success.     instead of using joint compound to fabricate the brick or stone we use vertical decorative concrete.    The method that we use also interacts with the plaster to create seamless interaction and unprecedented realism.

Goris2013.1

 

 

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The Official Launch of Vertical Artisans 2.0

Vertical Artisans 2.0 Press Release

Date: March 7th 2013

From Nathan Giffin

Vertical Artisans Owner

After 5 years of service we are now launching a massive upgrade to the site.   The new software system utilizes many new features for students.

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The Official Launch of Vertical Artisans 2.0

Vertical Artisans 2.0 Press Release

Date: March 7th 2013

From Nathan Giffin

Vertical Artisans Owner

After 5 years of service we are now launching a massive upgrade to the site.   The new software system utilizes many new features for students.

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Contractor Check List

Many times over the last several years I have done classes or training for folks and there has always been things that have been left out that are critical to the over all  productivity of the job.   These can be small things but they are really important.  So this is a check list that may help you stay focused and prepared.

Contractor Check List

Prior to the project starting

1.) Before starting the project have a signed contract.

2. Make sure the contract details your responsibilities and the clients responsibilities through the duration of the project.  If the responsibilities that you have laid down for the client are not meet then there needs to be a penalty for your wasted time.

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Vertical Artisans International

I wanted everyone to know that the Vertical Artisans International Web Site is underway.  This Web site will be another teaching site very much like the first one, however, the VDO's  will not have any voice over and the teaching will be primarily text, diagrams and pictures.  The VDO's will be illustrations of what is taught.

On the face of the site people will be able to click on the flag from which country they are from and the entire site will be converted to their own language.

I feel this site will really serve the artists over seas as much as the artists that speak English.   This site must be completed by the Mid summer as I will be holding classes in France and Italy...and perhaps Argentina as well.

I am very excited to share all of this with you as many of you are from other countries beside the USA.

If any of you have any ideas or upgrades you would like to see, please note them here.

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Vertical Artisans International

I wanted everyone to know that the Vertical Artisans International Web Site is underway.  This Web site will be another teaching site very much like the first one, however, the VDO's  will not have any voice over and the teaching will be primarily text, diagrams and pictures.  The VDO's will be illustrations of what is taught.

On the face of the site people will be able to click on the flag from which country they are from and the entire site will be converted to their own language.

I feel this site will really serve the artists over seas as much as the artists that speak English.   This site must be completed by the Mid summer as I will be holding classes in France and Italy...and perhaps Argentina as well.

I am very excited to share all of this with you as many of you are from other countries beside the USA.

If any of you have any ideas or upgrades you would like to see, please note them here.

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