Thursday, August 20, 2009

Cement Mistakes and the Grave of Peter

Here are the mosaics for the first step of the pool as a set. I used botticino and Venetian green marble, porphyry and Orsoni gold. I'm glad that this won't be a twelve step program, or I'd have quite a bit more work to do before the pool is complete!

Despite my best efforts of hovering over the contractor and subcontractors this past week, they finally made their first mistake in variance from the plan! The cement 'water spillover' forms that go from the spa to the pool are too far towards the middle, which would leave the water spilling over the edges of the marble sign. You know, like watching a film in a theatre where the curtains were only 80% pulled back. My little message to the contractor is aout where the sign will go.

Anyway, the contractor assured me that it is nothing a diamond saw, mortar, and time can't fix. (Which I knew, but it's good to hear that they'll take care of it so I don't have to go all DIY on them). But, I'm looking forward to finally having a 1200 sq ft (110m) 'canvas' deck on which to paint in marble and glass.

Since the Italy trip is rapidly approaching, I sent away to St. Peters Basilica office of archaeology requesting an awesome tour of the ancient tomb of Peter. Hopefully my sincere pleading and inclusion of a photo of my mosaic (in authentic difficult-to-work porphyry as I imagined the ancients would have done it) might curry favor to get on the list of only 200 or so per day in the whole world that get to see the ancient buried site.

In other news, the great and highly regarded mosaic artist Julie Richey, whose work I admire because of her awesome small grout lines, great andamento, and color choices, gave me an invite to a website where other like minded folks congregate. She has just finished a great Rooster mosaic, which I'm sure that Mo Stoneskin would enjoy greatly given the history of rooster related commentary on this blog.

I trust that everyone is enjoying the last little bit of summer (or winter if you are in the southern hemisphere)?


  1. Your work is so detailed and intricate. This is going to be stunning when it is complete.

  2. Oh wow Eric! I can't wait to see the finished product. And a spa too? NICE. Almost makes me want to trade in "my" lake for a pool. Almost. ;)

  3. Sigh... a spa, a pool & mosaics. Their is a real heaven on earth after all.
    As for the ancient tomb of Peter, I'm crossing my fingers for you. It must be unbelievably surreal to walk on ancient paths that existed in the beginning of time, almost.

  4. Eric, your pool is going to be incredible! I hope you get to see ol' peters grave!

  5. I'm loving our last bit of winter this side of the ocean, yes :) Just got hit by a new cold front this week and, unlike the friends and family, enjoying the cold.

    As for your visit to St. Peter's tomb: hope you get the go ahead! I really love the Chi Rho; where would you put it?

    Anyway: avere una buona giornata, caro signore ;)

  6. Have you missed my awesome and mind-altering comments these past couple of days? Admit it, you have!!!

    Oh I miss my virtual life...

    Your pool is going to be amazing. Seriously, I am so jealous you don't even know...and I can't wait to hear about your trip...yet again, another bit of jealousy is pulsating through mi cuerpo.

  7. I hope you actually put that sign up.

  8. Those mosaics kick ass, dude. Your pool is going to be the site of some bacchanalian romps for sure.

    Don't go all Weekend at Bernie's on old Pete, 'kay?

  9. Those mosaics are beautiful and I can't wait to see more pics of the pool-in-progess. Did you put up the sign for real?

  10. Peach Tart,
    It can be detailed, but sometimes I think the better ones are the ones that use the fewest stones to imply the most info. I'm still learning, but I think the gold tiles sparkling back through the water on the steps will be kind of neat.

    Otherworldlyone, :)
    Lakes are great, you have the whole waterskiing thing going on. I could only enjoy that for like 0.2 seconds in the new pool before it was painful.

    Dutch Donut Girl,
    Thanks for the well wishes on the admissions to the tomb. It is kind of incredible to think that I could be at basically what is one of the most important archaeological spots to Christianity outside of the Middle East.

    Mr. C,
    Thanks, I think my chances are about 50/50.

    I like the cold too. Of course, I'm saying that as it is 95F outside.
    I think I might donate the Chi Rho mosaic to a church or something, or sell to a collector and donate the proceeds to a charity.
    Grazie mille, signorina bella!

    I have totally missed your awesome and mind-altering comments. Where have you been? Working on your list, it's likely you were busy reading a new book while running a 5k and drinking some wine at the checkpoints. :)
    Don't be jealous, I will probably be checking in occasionally, and might even post since it will be almost a month.

    I should have put it up, but I don't want to tick the pool contractor off too bad before he's done with all the major stuff. He did correct the problem today, and I must say the stone they delivered for the wall and coping is awesome.

    Thanks, I'm planning some wine making parties where guests have to help make a batch of wine, but get to drink the previous batch.
    I'll leave Pete where I find him, promise. And absolutely no souveniers!!!

    You are too nice, I still need to make about 10 more mini-mosaics to be ready for plastering.
    I didn't put my smart-alec comment sign up, but I'll be putting up the real marble sign either tomorrow or the next day.
    I just finished troweling some thinset mortar on the back of it tonight, so it can dry before we attach it to the wall under the spa.
    More pictures are on the way, to be sure!

  11. Your mosaic is just amazing. The pool is going to be so fantastic when it's finished. I'm sure my invite just got lost in the mail....

  12. Before now, I've rarely wished anyone who wasn't looting good luck in getting into a tomb before their time, but for you I shall make an exception.

    Although, I suppose you are looting it for inspiration.

  13. Hahaha. Water skiing is cool and all, but it gets old. Now, riding on the big banana...never.

  14. I know you won't believe me, but that was not a pun.

  15. Tennyson,
    Thanks bud, you are invited for sure.

    The Jules,
    You are on to me about the inspiration bit, I'm sure.

    I must know more about your time on what you refer to as the 'big banana'... ;)

  16. Wow, I am going to look so hawt lounging around topless by that pool.

  17. Your work is awesome, though I am baffled as to where you find the time. I'm sure a rooster mosaic would be right up my street, I had a look and it is great, but I'm a tad baffled about the 'rooster related commentary', I don't remember any!

  18. Pru,
    You'd probably look hawt lounging around topless anywhere.

    Thanks! The mosaics and art in general does take some time, but you know I have no Bubba Jr. Stoneskin like you have which I've heard has a tendency to absorb time like I absorb beer while watching a game. Although it is time well spent of course. I meant with your kid of course.
    ps - probably best that you don't remember any of the rooster related commentary.

  19. Your pool mosaics are looking great! And I can't believe no one has said this yet, so I will: Julie's work is fantastic! That's the most stunning cock I've seen all week.

  20. katrocket,
    Lol, thanks and I agree, Julie is great at mosaic. By the way, I tried to leave a comment on your blog about the great photos, but I guess there was a technical difficulty. I wanted to write that I enjoyed your photos of the French architecture and the one entitled 'Lucky', because, hey nice stems.

  21. The best materials: