I found the wood sitting in the shorts at my favorite hardwood dealer. It was very dark, heavy, and dense. It was mahogany but so dark and heavy that I felt it was a wayward piece of Dominican, not Honduran. It was just what I wanted.
We all want to be instant experts. One of my sensei describes this in terms of the training montages that are standard fare in martial arts movies; the neophyte progresses from clumsy beginner to skilled pro in thirty seconds of cinematic snapshots.
I admit that the sort of non complex carving that happens when I carve a small bowl is pretty alluring. No antsy detail. No pattern that needs to be followed. Just follow the will of the wood.
We can easily get lost in the weeds talking about tradition in crafts.
This chest was not in stock long enough for me to do a proper set of photos. It sold at it's first appearance at the Maine Boatbuilder's Show to a pair of Boston Harbor pilots who were going to give it as a retirement gift to a colleague.
As consumers, there is much that you don't know about your favorite woods.
It sails on my wall with a cherry ocean and sky heading east from Japan or China towards Los Angelos. I think my father is pleased that his ship is restored to an essential place in our lives, through the unexpected kindness of a fellow seaman.
While teaching, I always like to decorate the workshop with carving examples for students to use as a reference. Week-long excursions to teach away from home mean emptying the house of many of my carvings. But samples in three dimensions often are better than pictures or demonstration, and the extra work was worth it.
The problem with imagination is that it's boundless. On the wall is a poster telling you that you can do it if you can imagine it. Don't take it too literally.
There is a particularly interesting quote I have always liked, "Those whom the gods would destroy, they first call promising."
Campfire stories are a particular genre. Some are meant to be a bit spooky, have a gruesome ending, or end with a moral. I can imagine Norse Sagas being told around campfires. They have just the proper supply on hand of gore, doomed characters, and the supernatural.
In gardening, I look for a pleasing semi-random arrangement. My "bog in a barrel" is the best example I can offer.
Little community, or big community, we always find ways to differentiate ourselves. Division is easy for humans. It's the ability to find common ground that's the real trick.
Kept man. Now there's a descriptor that you wouldn't generally associate with yours truly. Up until the seventies, I was rail thin. I also had what would be described today as an unruly shock of hair that resembled an anime hairdo. I got up in the morning and ran my fingers through it, and that was it. I was always hungry and either buried in a book or practicing guitar.
Ebullent, bouyant or joyous. These are some words that come to mind as you close your booth on Friday evening - the first day of a three-day show. Those words come to you if that first day has been successful. You can tell by the wad of cash in your pocket.
You can not put a Genie back into the bottle. It's like repacking one of those tents from the big box store. First, take it out, then use it. Then, try to fit it back in the bag the way it started. Forget about it.
At one time in New England history, to be on the map as a community meant being incorporated into the region's rail network. The iron rail coiled, twined, and netted the region, and from the New York border with Connecticut to Maine; we had modern ( for 1900) and replete public transportation.
I admit to visiting library and church book sales. Among the browsers, some look for romances, some for history, cookbooks, and how to do. Of course, I am interested in those rare finds that fit my maritime, carving, arts, and sci-fi interests.
I've never appreciated wallpaper. Growing up " to wallpaper over" something was to hide it.