I have worked with wood most of my life. When I was young if something wooden in our home broke, we repaired it, mostly out of necessity. But, I remember using the tools and the process. I found out, in those days, that wood working was taught formally in the schools. Cool! I took every advantage of the opportunity. I found that knowing how to use the tools and repair things was very useful. I also used the shop and tools to balance my “real job” life. After a long shift in the refinery, it helped me relax. I gained formal training on the lathe through our local club and Arrowmont. This craft/art school in Gatlinburg, Tn. would bring world class wood artists in and we could learn from them.
I’ve turned most anything on the lathe, from pens to segmented urns. I’ve “evolved” into a sculptor, of sorts, with the process starting at the lathe. When the work, mostly wood, is removed from the lathe I begin the process of carving and coloring it. I use most any tool that will do the job. I have found that sometimes the goal is simply to leave only enough material to complete the thought of the piece. I still find a special satisfaction in working with the tools and material. I enjoy the challenge of taking a thought and then creating something resembling that thought that you can hold in your hand. This puts a smile on my face. And after all, smiling is good.