easy Come…

  Well, you know the rest.  I have heard a phrase from customers (very few artisans will say this) at almost every encounter: if you love what you do, it must be easy.  This may be a reaction to the drudgery and unhappiness many of us feel in our work.  We are in large organizations where our point of view doesn’t count.  We are

Read more

Who Cares?

  Throughout my work this question lingers, a soul-hungry ghost.  Who cares if I back up and do something better when no one – or very few will notice?  Who cares if I sacrificially stretch myself to new skills and designs which make my furniture better?  Who cares if I give myself and skills in service to my church and community?  Who cares? Lots

Read more

The Real Deal

I interact with people around my work and artisinal work in general, I notice in them an anti-machine bias. For instance, I might receive a gracious compliment about my furniture followed by the statement: “It’s so nice to see people hand making furniture.”  Likewise, a presentation by noted artists in our area always seems to begin with how Western civilization ran

Read more

At One

There is no shortcut in the process of coming together between maker and user.  In the world of wood artisanship, there is a sense that building by hand somehow puts more of the maker in a piece, and thus, moves him or her closer to the user of the work. The basic problem with this is what does “hand made” mean?  I’ve

Read more

A New Thing

As a boy of 12, I got to work in a cabinetmaker’s shop. I say ‘work’, but help was more like what I did. I swept floors, kept machinery clean, went for coffee and did little things. The cabinetmaker showed me how to sand the edges of doors and round off the sharp corners. I learned how to support heavy

Read more
1 2