Our ever growing video series is back with a look into the creation of one of Compass Ironworks specialties, The Iron Japanese Maple Tree. Keep following along as we add a Video Series tab in our Galleries.
The staff and design team of a Children’s Clinic wanted to install a sculpted Iron Tree in tribute to the Clinic’s 25 years of service, and to have it replicate the Japanese Maple Tree that had been planted at the clinics founding in memory of afflicted children. They wanted to capture the unique characteristics, the twin branches, a low cut off branch and intertwining branches.
The trunks are created from pipe that is slit and tapered. They are heated, bent, shaped and twisted to natural shapes. While various size rods are forged and bent to lifelike growth. The iron leaves are forged with veins to create a lifelike reveal. Each petal is hand hammered for character and personality. The entire unit is hot-dipped galvanized for rust prevention, then coated in a light black. Once coated, we scotch-brite by hand to bring out the silver effect. All leaves are gilded by hand for realistic effect. The artistic tree is blasted very lightly to give the leaves, branches, twigs and trunk a natural dappled look. Finally, the forged Iron tree is coated with a clear sealer.
The most rewarding part was when the landscape architect evaluated the tree and made the remark that it had come out better than he envisioned, he didn’t realize it is humanly possible to create such a natural look.