Saturday, June 14, 2008

Valkyrie


I had forgotten about this "gift sculpt", mostly because -- for some reason I can't recall -- I didn't display it in my old studio with all of the other Sculpey gifts. Instead, I put it on a shelf in my house where it got hidden among some other stuff.


Which is unfortunate, because this is yet another beautiful piece of Jim Lawson artistry. Done in 1997, it portrays me astride my Honda Valkyrie, a bike I still own.


The Valkyrie (which is no longer produced, sadly) was a real departure for Honda. They took the awesome flat-six 1500cc engine from the Gold Wing and put it into what you might call a "cruiser-style" frame and running gear. I loved it immediately, and bought one of the first year models. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles of the Gold Wing, but you get that same smoothness and wide spread of power from the six-cylinder engine. It's very comfortable, handles great, and looks very cool. Honda made a few more variations, including one which edged back toward the Gold Wing a bit, with a stereo system, cruise control, and hard luggage. (I bought one of those, too, but recently traded it in on another bike.) And then they stopped making them. Bummer. -- PL

P.S. To show you what the real thing looks like, here's my brother Bruce with my Valkyrie a few years ago.

9 comments:

~ tOkKa said...

-->> ..keepin' it simple, i promise.


It's pretty damm amazing Jim can translate such mechanics into a sculpted form.

Actually it's pretty rare any of us would get to see any Mirage artist 3- d work. Pretty impressive.

Hope we get to see more LAIRD sculpts too.

>v<

Buslady of SoCal said...

I didn't know they quit the Valkyrie! Those were nice lookin bikes. Kinda the style I'd have if I rode.
Love the figure, he put a lot of detail into it. :D

PL said...

"Blogger Buslady of SoCal said...

I didn't know they quit the Valkyrie! Those were nice lookin bikes. Kinda the style I'd have if I rode.
Love the figure, he put a lot of detail into it. :D"

Yeah, I was disappointed when Honda stopped making them, especially after they made the Valkryie "Rune", a beautiful piece of motorcycle art (albeit somewhat impractical) using the even MORE awesome 1800cc motor from the newer Gold Wing. I was expecting that they would continue in that vein and create more versions using the newer engine, but they just stopped. -- PL

Dinoff said...

Wow! Awesome! Amazing Detail!

Buslady of SoCal said...

Looked up the Rune, yeah it looks cool but it also looks heavy. The exhaust on that thing though, WOW! It's got alot of nice curves, it looks like the 'rebel without a cause' type to me.

Neil V said...

Hey Peter,

do you watch that bike show on I think the Discovery Channel? I'm not a bike or car guy, but I'm curious if you could have them build you any type of custom bike, what would it be?

I just got finished watching Wild Hogs, and they built three custom bikes that appear in the movie..

PL said...

"Neil V said...
Hey Peter,

do you watch that bike show on I think the Discovery Channel? I'm not a bike or car guy, but I'm curious if you could have them build you any type of custom bike, what would it be?

I just got finished watching Wild Hogs, and they built three custom bikes that appear in the movie.."

Neil, I occasionally watch "American Chopper:, which can be fun (I even briefly considering seeing if they would be interested in doing a TMNT "theme" bike). It seems like a few years ago there were several custom bike building shows on, but unless I'm not looking in the right place, they seem to have disappeared.

I would actually love to own an exact replica of the Nightwatcher bike from the TMNT movie -- that would be fun. -- PL

PL said...

"Buslady of SoCal said...
Looked up the Rune, yeah it looks cool but it also looks heavy. The exhaust on that thing though, WOW! It's got alot of nice curves, it looks like the 'rebel without a cause' type to me."

It is heavy, but motorcycle makers these days (especially Honda) have figured out how to make a lot of that weight SEEM to vanish through clever engineering. Bikes like the Rune and the Gold Wing can be quite a handfull if you are trying to move them around in a small space, but once they get rolling, they feel quite nimble.

The Rune may look like a "rebel without a cause" type, with its wild styling, but it is really quite civilized (a typical, and well-beloved, Honda trait). -- PL

Jason said...

Heh, Gold Wing Grande!