What you receive depends on what you give. The workman gives the toil of his arm, his energy, his movement; for this the craft gives him a notion of the resistance of the material and its manner of reaction. The artisan gives the craft his love; and to him the craft responds by making him one with his work. But the craftsman gives the craft his passionate research into the laws of Nature which govern it; and the craft teaches him Wisdom.
René Adolphe Schwaller de Lubicz 1887-1961
I’ve always been drawn to working with my hands. In 1970 I started my dive into craftsmanship by studying blacksmithing – decorative ironwork. I first studied in New Mexico, and then in England and France. From there I became the blacksmith for the New York State Historical Association where I did restoration and reproduction ironwork as well as taught summer classes there.
In 1980 I had to give up that craft due to health issues. But I still needed to “create” so I began to work with wood. I had been a subscriber to Fine Woodworking Magazine since its very first issue in 1975 and I was a member of the American Crafts Council . . . so I wasn’t exactly a stranger to wood.
It took some getting used to – I couldn't forge or bend wood like I could iron. But gradually I figured it out with the help of some excellent teachers.
My most popular items are the serving boards. I have fun designing them and making them as perfect as possible. People love the glass-smooth finish on them.
My favorite thing to do, however, is work with people who want something special. It’s fun to go through the design process to come up with exactly what someone wants.
I have also been lucky enough to have clients who have given me total free reign and say, “Just make me a cabinet” or “Make a stand for this sculpture.” Naturally, I am immensely pleased when they see the piece for the first time and their eyes just light up.
If you have an idea that can be created in wood, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me. I’d love to discuss your plan.