I have been working with wood, sometimes professionally and sometimes out of passionate interest, for more than 35 years. I have built houses, furniture, cabinets, and turned objects. Woodturning appeals to me because with careful crafting a shaped object can reveal a perfect curve that engages our primal instincts and catches the eye with the warmth and complexity inherent in the wood itself.
My involvement with wood began when I worked with Charles McRaven restoring and building custom log and post and beam homes in Virginia. We dismantled old houses, some built in the 1700s, and rebuild them at new locations. I could examine the tool marks in the wood left centuries ago and work with wood, like heart pine and chestnut, that have long vanished from the commercial market. I gained a sense that working with wood honors the wood itself and extends the life of the tree that came before the bowl or table or whatever else I create.
I like the idea that crafting wood into an everyday object can imbue that object with artistic design that enhances its function and enriches our lives. I also enjoy the exploration of more abstract concepts that lathe work allows. With whatever I make, I like to imagine that the object I create will be used for many generations.