The original mermaid sketch is complex and involved and Jones says that there are areas of detail such as the hair and tail that he wanted to convey an almost “rhythmic form. I wanted to be able to feel the tail whipping through the water,” he says.
The guitar body consists of walnut retrieved from the Missouri River. There are two layers of aged and air-dried walnut -- the guitar front is a single piece of wood and the back is bookmatched. “I like to work with woods that exhibit or showcase the variation that nature provides and take a lot of time to arrange the stock just so to suit both the shape of my instruments as well as whatever forms of embellishment I may choose to incorporate,” Jones says.
Before he began the actual construction of the piece, he spent many hours building 2-D and 3-D clay models. Then after creating a reference point, he began the wood carving. “I could wing it or fly by the seat of my pants by just diving into the chunk of wood, but a few wrong turns can reduce a great piece of walnut into kindling,” he notes. “I’d much rather work from a detailed map that I’ve created from the ground up. The development of the form in clay gives me a familiarity with the subject that I wouldn’t otherwise have any other way…like a rehearsal of sorts.”
Additional features of this walnut guitar, Syrena, also include: a neck created with walnut and maple, soft V carve, angled 3x3 headstock, carved badge and dual-action trussrod; a fretboard made of cocobolo, 12” radius, Mother of Pearl sidemarkers and Evo gold fretwire; and a Danish oil finish.