Jasper from South Dakota front view - image by Bud Hostetler Jasper from South Dakota front view - image by Bud Hostetler

Jasper collected in South Dakota by Mary was a gift from Mary Russel, thank you Mary.The rock is naturally hollowed out, similar to a geode.It has no crystals lining the cavity and has been referred to as an impoverished geode.It makes a striking arch stone and the base was designed to further enhance them.The other choice would have been to enhance the front opening by carving down deeper into the stand (photo on the right) closing off the rear and opening and creating a cave.I may do that so it could be displayed two ways.Mahogany base with walnut stain

Chert in mahogany base - image by Bud Hostetler


This small piece of chert, another gift from Mary Russel, floats out over the base. Measurements, 2 inches long, .75 inches wide and 1.125 inches tall. The stone has a stem projecting down into the base approximately .25 inches. A larger than necessary hole was carved into the base, filled with a slow setting epoxy. The stone was oiled to prevent it from sticking to the epoxy, pressed into place and removed. The base is mahogany with a walnut stain

Murphy stone in carbonized cherry base - image by Bud Hostetler


This piece of Murphy Stone belongs to Mary Russel. It is very abstract and was an interesting piece to work with. Is it a viewing stone or a scholar rock? Does it matter?! A number of photos were taken, sketches drawn on the photos and discussions with Mary. A couple different bases were built and discarded. This stone has so many angles and surfaces to work with. For the base to compliment the stone I decided that the base should have no parallel surfaces and no right angles. This stone is best viewed at an angle, as shown at left. Mary displays this stone on a diamond shaped stand that also has no right angles. The legs for the display stand are set well in from the edge to give it a floating effect, further ease the eye. The base is cherry with a carbonized finish.

Jade horses - image by Jo Bloomquist





The two jade horses belong to Jo Bloomquist. It is actually to be worn as a necklace. Jo wanted to display it like a statue sitting on a shelf. The carving had a small indentation on each side (see small projection sticking up at an angle) that allowed me to secure the horses to the base. The base is cherry with carbonized finish.

Sandstone with patina - image by Bud Hostetler


This piece of water worn hard sandstone was purchased at a Bonsai show in Chicago a number of years ago. I’ve never cleaned the stone; it has a nice “pond scum” patina that adds some interest. If it were to be cleaned, it would be very light in color and loose much of its natural beauty. The base for this tone had to compliment the three layers. This base has only one foot, set way in from the edge to further mimic the layered look of the stone. The stone has a short inset base, basically as tem. There was no way to seat it into a base and make it appear as if it were floating. The logical solution was epoxy. Oil on this stone would have soaked in, darkening it and potentially ruining the patina. Kitchen cellophane wrap to the rescue. An area for the epoxy was excavated out and filled with a slow setting epoxy. The cellophane was put into place and the stone pressed into it. It was left to cure for 24 hours. The cellophane peeled off without difficulty. The stone seated so well into the epoxy than when it‘s picked up the base stays in place.Walnut base with a clear polyurethane finish.

Watch for Viewing Stones part 2 in the March Edition