Day 101 : String, country


String instruments not only include the kind that requires a bow striking the strings like cellos and violins but also harps, banjos and guitars. In an orchestra, it’s an age old tradition to force left-handers to play with the bow in the right hand in order for everyone to bow in the same direction to avoid collision. [The violin and fiddle are the same wooden box. Minor changes are made to the set up (bridge, strings, tuners, chin rest) to suit the player’s preference for their style of play.]

Left-hander, blue grass fiddler Katrina Pearce is a Grand Masters champ and three time national champion.

Sandy: I decided to use my pastels to render the violin rather than sketch with a pencil. When I draw tiny sketch marks with my left hand, my right hand will unconsciously twitch as though it were doing the sketching. The faster I go with my left, my right hand twitches faster. I have to concentrate really hard to stop the movement but then my left hand slows down, too. The pastels don’t show the details as well but replicating wood wasn’t my goal (or within my drawing ability).

Kelly: Found this info: There is specific ‘handedness’ to some string instruments, owing to the internal construction for bass/treble, tone production, bridge intonation, etc. Banjo, on the other hand, can be strung ‘backwards’ without any major problems, except possibly replacing the nut for the different gauges of string on each side.

Sandy’s year long journey – going from being a right-hander to left-hander, and Kelly’s parallel trip as a left-hander doing things as a right-hander.


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