My objective is to make turned wooden objects that are beautiful to look at, to feel and to hold. Wood is a precious resource and I strive to make the most of every piece of wood that I work on. The quality of form, finish and feel and the attention to detail is the best that I can do on every piece and every piece is unique
The outside shape of the piece is obviously very important. The difference between a well proportioned, well formed piece and one that is ugly and out of whack is sometimes quite subtle and very difficult to define, but you know it once you see it.
The shape of the inside of the bowls and how it relates to the outside shape is also very important since it impacts the weight and balance of the piece and the functionality
Shiny is not always best, I dont like wood that is covered with a plastic looking and hard finish that prevents you from touching and seeing the real wood and so I dont use lacquers or varnishes on any of my pieces.
Oil is a penetrative finish that sinks into the wood and reveals the depth and the complexity of the grain. Because it penetrates, oil also tends to darken the colour of the wood. Multiple coats of oil can be used to develop a satin or low gloss finish.
Wax is an easier finish to apply and doesn’t penetrate as oil does. So the wood tends to stay lighter in colour, although it is not as hard wearing as oil.
Wood is very tactile material and I work hard to make sure that the surface feel and the weight and balance of the piece are right.
Texture and contrast are also important and techniques such as burning with a blow torch reveals the grain patterns of oak and ash wood.
I make the walls on some pieces thin so that the piece is refined and light weight, others are made heavy and solid.
I am a perfectionist and I believe that the parts that you don’t see are as important as those that you do. This is why I finish the base of my work as carefully as I do the rest. Turn one of my bowls over and notice how the base is shaped and contoured, how it is sanded to a smooth finish and how each piece is signed, dated and numbered. On many of pieces the centre of the base is inlayed with a glass or metal bead. Attention to detail.
Every piece of wood is different and wood from the same tree or even the same section of tree can vary greatly in grain, colour, hardness, etc.This is especially true of the figured or spalted (rotted) wood that is often used in turning. I find it very difficult to replicate pieces and even when Ive tried the copy just doesnt have the integrity or purity of the original. It is also more interesting and creatively fulfilling to respond to each piece of wood, so that as you are cutting into it you are adjusting and making allowances for the peculiarities and particulars of that piece of wood. For these reasons no two pieces of mine are alike, each is unique.