#YetiProject RAMP

Well… Today is September 20th…Iv’e been in Park City working on the giant Yeti for RAMP ski and snowboard company since Sept 6th. Our artist collective was named the Yeti Collective over a year ago and this week we will finish a huge Yeti sculpture for a really neat company. “Thriller” as iv’e come to call him is built of a steel framework and  recycled fiberglass leftovers that will make up the fur. The gangley arms and oversized hands and feet are not all this yeti is about. It seems every day he takes more shape his character grows. This beast does not belong anywhere else as a sculpture. It was built according to the wind and snow direction. It’s arm fortified with the anticipation of the bold jibbing and RAMPing off the frame. While designing the steel frame I pondered these words of the Fountainhead.  “Here are my rules: what can be done with one substance must never be done with another. No two materials are alike. No two sites on earth are alike. No two buildings have the same purpose. The purpose, the site, the material determine the shape. Nothing can be reasonable or beautiful unless it’s made by one central idea, and the idea sets every detail. A building(Sculpture) is alive, like a man. Its integrity is to follow its own truth, its one single theme, and to serve its own single purpose. A man doesn’t borrow pieces of his body. A building(Sculpture) doesn’t borrow hunks of its soul. Its maker gives it the soul and every wall, window and stairway to express it.”  You see in the beginning I thought to find power poles and use those as the primary mast to hold the beast. To use all available recycled materials. I redesigned the framework on the drive from Mississippi to Utah as Clyde and I hauled 2,000 pounds of steel and equipment in a moving truck. I was lucky Clyde was moving to Oregon and had room for me and some big ideas. Altho I’d planned for the help of amigos I knew the responsibility of every weld and detail of structural design on me. Daniel Bell is to fur the beast with while fiberglass shrapnel and Micah Goddard seems to be the glue that held our ideas together long enough for me to weld them in place.  To Micah and Nick I am  extremely grateful for the materials and efforts they have brought to the table. Truly a more accommodating duo could not be found. Daniel and I were lucky… ha “RAMP is lucky” to have these guys. The internal structure is a weird project because I know all the steel work will be covered up. It has been so fun to climb I will be kinda sad when its all untouchable fiberglass. Need I remind you this thing will be crawling with invisible needles, don’t touch! There has been talk of making the Yeti arm holding a chairlift be a snowboard/ski feature. as in hittable, jumpable…RAMPable! Yes it seems wild to slingshot off the roof and slide the shoulder down the arm and RAMP its fist but thats what the guys in the shop are dreaming of. Now to figure out the details. Not just the shapes but bracing the monster for impact of all flavors. Who knows the hell the kids can cook up. The head still needs work and DB’s plan for the skin still has some wrinkles to be ironed out. All in all… an amazing project all day and wild nights with friends and music. Park City:)

Today is the 2 week mark and I wanted to give an update on the adventure and thanks to those who supported us.

Thoughts on Sept 21…We had our share of rainy days and equipment difficulties but this Yeti has really come together. The frame is 98% finished… time for the skin and time for me to get started on other projects for the RAMP art show. I see bits of our friends who have come to help and remnants of decisions made amongst amigos when I see this giant steel Yeti. It was amazing to have Grace Kent come for 5 days and live sleep and breathe our hippie Yeti lifestyle:) She took picture and videos and cooked and honestly took care of us. We miss her cheery disposition and brainpower on the daily. The small army of Park City locals Zaid and Wade, Dexter and Women??? who were they?  As if it couldn’t get any better my Dad flew in today to help work and see the progress. Of course I am all smiles when I see him. I remember the all the people who love me and are proud that us Southern boys have such a cool opportunity. There can’t be many Mississippi boys that are sponsored by a ski and snowboard company.ha it’s wild. Our spirits are high from last night as RAMP owners Mike Kilchenson and his wife Edie and Vanessa and Polly took our crew to eat sushi. It was then that I really got a glimpse of our RAMP family. Mike was very active in fundraising for Cystic Fibrosis back in the North East. I can’t explain why exactly but it tightened our friendships.

Sept 26:   The steel work on the Yeti has been done for a few days… DB and his crew have been working on the skin. Micah mostly the feet and hands. Today it snowed for a while and was rainy all day. Tomorrow I am to order the LED’s to go in the Yeti’s eyes. Hopefully SuperBrightLED’s.com can solve this mystery like they have my other lighting concerns. I am excited to see the base fur finished on the beast but must confess we have spent the whole project thinking we could finish something in one day and it takes 3 days. Iv’e never underestimated any project so much as this one. It is truly an epic proportion and it seems the fur panels are no less challenging than covering it in sheet steel. I do secretly wish the budget had been a giant blocky stainless steel yeti,ha amazing. Ah well recycled miss mash of fiberglass will have to do. The Yeti skin must be cut and pieced together with a nail gun and screws then wired to the steel frame. Cutting fiberglass is not an option for me to be around so I have opted out for the building panels and trimming to fit portions of the project. I will miss the steel jungle gym and every day a panel is put up I am happy it looks more abominable but less like my climbing gym. In the meantime my hands have been full making the barrels that hold the cut glass bottles that make up the eyes. I was happy that DB insisted he finish the epoxy process on the steel to glass backside of the eye. I continued on my own project for the upcoming RAMP art show on Nov 2, 2013. I am building a big RAMP firebox that hopefully Mike will get excited about and realize they cant’t live without it. It will be a beauty and I am glad to have had a few cold nights with good music and friends around to help me build this thing. I am excited to be doing something familiar again. So many surprises on the Yeti it’s refreshing to design something I am manage in a few days. I will miss the shop at RAMP and the family we have become a part of. I am thrilled to be this far along with Thriller and hope he finishes smoothly and DB and I can get on the road soon.  I had another unexpected blessing this morning. I taught a follow up Acro Yoga class at a little studio in Prospector. Janice who runs the juice bar and her customers who have weekly yoga practice made me feel at home. We had two great sessions, It was a great break from the rainy cold morning.

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