Sunday, 27 September 2015

What am i doing

In the back of my under construction dark room i am fitting a 4.7 x 0.82m wet bench for black and white film, silver print processing. Making images. Thinking of my school art teacher mr prior, who gave me a set of dark room keys so i could walk out of english lessons (as a struggling dyslexic) and retreat to the dark room for my art, it was a sanctuary for me i appreciate now more than i ever have, thank you coadoux high school.

Thursday, 9 July 2015

First roll of film in 19 years

It was 19 years ago i last processed a roll of black and white film. Today it was a great pleasure and relief to finally process my first roll of film in my still under construction darkroom area. Now i just need walls and a wet bench to do some enlarging and wet printing. Absolutely loving it.

Monday, 29 June 2015

Is it a man is it a

Just took some snaps in the garden to work up a life size sculpture in wood waste. It was so funny my wife jenny could not stop hooting with laughter between snaps.

Sunday, 28 June 2015


Progress has been slow on my lost at sea project lately with all the building work on our house. With tired limbs feeling much like the visualisation of myself in the picture i managed to draft the beginning out of another drawing. Really enjoyed it.

Friday, 8 May 2015

Homage to my father

Homage to my farther. Please note the attention to detail, everyone should tie their laces with the commando knot. 

Dr Thomas Hawson
Hundalee Mill Farm
01835 869931
07801 653830

Friday, 10 April 2015

Sailed guffaw at last.

Thank goodness guffaw sails. At last after what has felt like to long a wait i have finally sailed guffaw successfully. In fact she goes well, this afternoon i spent 2 hours in eyemouth bay sailing back and forth trimming the rig, basically moving the sail forwards and back on the mast and balanced it up nicely. Going through the lifting and dropping of the sail and rowing about. This evening the wind dropped to 1-2 b force and i took fergus and freyja out in the sunset before bed. It was magic and we all loved the experience.

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Life art boats

Made to measure. I am beginning to see more clearly like feeling with my hands in the dark, away of developing lost at seas still further. By reaching back into my childhood to the events that have gone some way to inspiring the work so far and making drawigs models and artifacts of reflection. I now have a growing body of work and confidence to continue despite the lack of immediate income, i hope to have enough work soon for another show of lost at sea but with a wider collection of artifacts contributing to the whole, it should be more attractive to show and sell the smaller items.

Friday, 6 March 2015

Through bolted towing eye

Now getting carried away and no idea if the thing floats. So desperate to see gaffuw floating.

design criteria

Criteria 55kg Hull weight Good beach wave handling Sail closeto wind Sail at 5 knots Capable of 290kg Minimum load 100kg Seaworthy in chop and wind Towable (by boat) Roof-rack mountable Self bailing 4 seats Bouyancy Rowable Sailable Rightable
ID Criteria                              
A 55kg Hull weight                              
B Good beach wave handling A                            
C Sail closeto wind A C                          
D Sail at 5 knots A D C                        
E Capable of 290kg E E E E                      
F Minimum load 100kg A B C D E                    
G Seaworthy in chop and wind B G G G G G                  
H Towable (by boat) H H H H H H H                
I Roof-rack mountable A I I I E I G H              
J Self bailing J J J J J J J J            
K 4 seats K K K K K K K H I J          
L Bouyancy L L L L L L L L L L L        
M Rowable M M M M M M M M M M M M      
N Sailable N N N N N N N N N N N N M    
O Rightable O O O O O O O O O O O O O O  
Total 5 2 3 2 6 0 6 9 5 9 7 11 13 12 14

Letter of Thanks to Ian Oughtred



Ian Oughtred

Stuan Cottage


Isle of Skye

IV51 9NS


01470 532732



Dear Ian


This winter I have made a skin-on-frame lightweight lug rigged double ender pictures enclosed. I have not had it afloat yet! Will let you know how it goes. I must thank you for your boat construction book, and lug designs, they inspired and helped me develop my own set of lines along with other references. Having rowed a good distance in a Faroe Islands boat at the Nólsoy feastival with the Faroe museum curator he gave me a copy of his book on the boats, this was also a great inspiration. I have also had the pleasure of working 2 weeks along side a boat builder at the Roskilde Viking Ship Museum, Denmark and sailing some of their collection of boats, this experience made a great impression on me. Making a commitment to designing your own hull shape is a leap of faith it seems of a rear nature these days, its not the first boat I have made but it always feels like that, addicted to the new. Having not floated it yet I cannot comment on the pleasure and/or pain involved fully, but so far I would not have done it another way. The lines and details, I finally decided on after two weeks over the drawing board are the result of many factors, a friend made a design comparison chart to help, enclosed, it gives an idea of my brief.


This boat was made as part of an art project called 'Lost at Sea', in memory partly to my late father who worked offshore in the North Sea oil and gas drilling and production for 35 years. Two skin-on-frame pods are part of the art installation, which to my surprise won a place, and the prize for most original artwork, at the Visual Arts Scotland open show at the Royal Scottish Academy last month. This project I hope to tour as an exhibition with some workshop activities for all ages and at some point a visually documented art performance with the family taking the pods out to sea in an off shore wind and releasing the pods.


This summer our new skin boat 'Guffaw' will be our tender on our summer cruise in our Folkboat 'Chuckle'. Guffaw will give the kids some adventure between the passage making.


I will go off now and weigh the boat, interesting problem, as I do not have these details yet to share and it being one of the design criteria that influenced the design. I am at present finishing the rig so it can be reefed easily, and making the hard foam buoyancy blocks to go in the ends and under the seats. After launching at Eyemouth soon I hope, (its killing me waiting), the family, Jenny (mum), Fergus 10yrs, Freyja 7yrs, Beatrice the dog and myself will make a sailing rowing camping trip down loch Shiel. Perhaps a night at the Glenfinnan house hotel after the trip might be appreciated.



Thanks again for your inspiration.



Thomas Hawson

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Bar balance

The ply bar was balanced with 5.016 kg this was deducted as ply bar weight to get final fig.

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Oops. New weight!

I forgot to deduct the weight of the ply bar so final weight calcs are:
77.246 kg for rigged weight
55.176 kg for hull weight including centre board. Wow, thats spot on the weight i required in my design brief to be able to lift the boat on to the truck roof bars.

How much does guffaw weigh

82.262 kg rigged
60.192 kg hull,with centre board only.

Very happy with that. Now how do we get that on and off the roof rack?

Friday, 6 February 2015

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Job done

Well accept for the final arranging in 'the space'. Wow. What a relief and it only just fitted up the spiral stairs at the rsa.

Job done

Well accept for the final arranging in 'the space'. Wow. What a relief and it only just fitted up the spiral stairs at the rsa.

Saturday, 31 January 2015

Daddys little crew mates

The control lines ropes and pulleys have all been tested by my little helpers. Freyja says she can not wait to sail out of Eyemouth and sat in the bottom of Guffaw the wee boaty for a good long time this afternoon imagining being out on the water. Rigged she looks ready for serious adventure business. Tomorrow we must load her onto the trailer for edinburgh and instal her in the royal scottish academy. At the moment i am so tired of constantly working on guffaw i will be so happy to have her off my hands, there have been so many other jobs and things neglected of late.

Friday, 30 January 2015

The bitter end

Bit tired

I feel a bit foolish. I thought i would get the gunwhales rubbing ropes and the rigging done today but no. I have finished rat-tailing and fitting only one rubbing rope it took most of the day to do the splicing and the photo is the third end done today of the port side rope. One more end to do in the morning. Lack of attention to detail i can here my farther wittering. He would loved teesing me about overlooking the length of time it takes to attend to the details. However the show must go on.

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Fitting out

The bright wood on the black canvas is stunning. The whole family helped turn her over so i can fit the rub rail and rope and duck boards and rowlocks and make the oars and rig the whole thing oh and the self- bailer hull sealing plate! And pack it all with sculptural pods for delivery on sunday. Hummmmmm. Still lots to do.

Thursday, 22 January 2015


Well the skin went on great. Its on the thin side cotton duck canvas 10 g/m2 but it will be light and plenty strong enough. Got a coat of finish on in a hurry last night at 7 pm before hockey training and did not check i was working it in enough to soak through. So discover white patches on the inside. 1 1/2 hrs this morning paining finish on inside between the timber nightmare. Its ok. Cleats and gunwale now.

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

What a releif

The problem with doing things you have never done before it comes with a bit of anxiety, specially if a dead line looms.

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Roving took ages


Kevlar rovings next after a test panel of the covering fabric, complex system not used before so a bit of experimentation in order before committing to the big job

Saturday, 10 January 2015

Spar making again

I seem to have been big long round things quite regularly reciently! If i get the heavey plaining finished today i can have my rest tomorrow for fresh start monday morning.


Like a coiled spring progress has leapt forward after the christmas hols. Its good to get some more done on the boat there is still loads to do before 1 feb delivery to rsa vas show. Working saturdays to see it done on time loving the emersion in my work it feels like a long time since i have been able to put so much time consistently in.