Here there & everywhere

Back to the blog now. April has been a whirlwind month for me…and as I look back I see only 2 blog posts all month. When I counted up the final tally, I was out of the house & shop for 15 days out of the month. On top of that was packing and preparation for the various gigs, and unpacking & trying to sort out what’s what. I’m almost all set up again now. And it’s almost May.

I had posted about the barred owl at Roy Underhill’s place, but there was woodworking going on too. Two 3-day spoon carving classes. Lots of spoons underway; something like 18-20 students off & running. Or hewing, I guess.

The trip to Roy’s is a 2-day drive, so that was 10 days away. I came home, unpacked, put tools away and switched gears to prep for a demonstration & slide talk to the Timber Framers’ Guild at their meeting in Portsmouth, NH. https://www.tfguild.org/ Easy, this one was a up & back in one-day affair, but took time to prep. I shot no photos, because I was doing the slide-show bit, then I worked on the wainscot chair I have underway, I think. I honestly forget. It was a very nice crowd, friendly people who chop large mortise & tenons…

Back from that, un-pack, and dive right into prepping for Fine Woodworking Live in Southbridge, Massachusetts.  http://www.finewoodworkinglive.com/ 

A one-day spoon carving class, followed by Friday night-Sunday afternoon conference. Hotel woodworking! I had little assigned to me there, a slide talk on Saturday morning, then loafing around hob-nobbing with woodsy types. They got me an assistant to help teach the spoon carving class – Dave Fisher! I wound him up & stood back & watched.

It was great to be able to see a lot of the event, at Greenwood Fest I never get to see the presentations for more than 10-15 minutes at a stretch, so I felt like I got away with something at this event. I didn’t take photos beyond Dave’s demo on bowl-carving. If for some reason you’ve missed Dave’s work thus far, go: https://davidffisherblog.wordpress.com/ 

 

As you see, it truly is hotel-woodworking. Wall-to-wall carpeting, cameras projecting onto screens. It all works out very well, but it’s hard to shoot coherent photos. So these were all I got.

I watched Mary May carve a ball & claw foot, she’s always great to see. I’ve known Mary and her work for several years now, but never really get to see her presentations from beginning to end. https://www.marymaycarving.com/carvingschool/  and her Instagram site is here: https://www.instagram.com/marymaywoodcarving/ 

Then we piled into see a very clear demo from Pete Galbert on turning. I’ve done almost no turning for 3 years so it was very helpful to get a breakdown on his approach. I have a lot of lathe-work coming up, so I went and bought Pete’s new video from Lost Art Press to help me get my turning muscles back. https://lostartpress.com/collections/dvds/products/galbert-turning 

https://www.instagram.com/petergalbert/

It was really a great time. The Fine Woodworking crew worked long and hard to put on this event, I highly recommend it. I’m sure you’ll get wind of it when they announce it for next year.

 

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Greenwood Fest Instructor: Pete Galbert

I’ll just do two of these today, then registration opens this morning at 10 am eastern time. http://www.greenwoodfest.org/  – then it will be back to actual pictures of woodworking on the blog, some joinery & carving. wait til you see it…

I’ve got a lot of mileage out of a remark that I make in classes, and I’ll get it over with here. “I hate Pete Galbert” I tell students all the time. They are shocked, and lean in so to not miss some juicy rant…but in the end they are disappointed. It’s just that he’s written the best woodworking book I know, & illustrated it himself. Makes it hard for those of us with books in the works. There, that’s out in the open, now we know how I feel.

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Pete, in case you have somehow avoided his work – is right up at the top tier of American chairmakers. He & I have  known each other for several years now, travelling on the same circuit/circus – Lie-Nielsen, Lost Art Press, etc. So we’d bump into each other once or twice a year, but it’s always brief, then we each go off to our demonstrations & classes. He’s moved to Massachusetts now, but we still haven’t got together – he’s always off somewhere, teaching people to make chairs.

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two views of crest carvings; before & after burnishing & oiling

Pete’s one of those woodworkers who is always improving. He does not just keep repeating what he does, but tinkers with techniques, tools (he’s developed some great chairmaking tools) construction – his work is always evolving. He & I have not sat down & figured out exactly what he’s doing in the festival, but I know it’s worth seeing. A great teacher & chairmaker, this will be his first time with Plymouth CRAFT, we hope it’s the beginning of something. Oh, & he’ll probably bring that great book of his too. You should get it if you haven’t already. Every time I look at it, I’m itching to make a Windsor chair again.

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I swiped all these photos from his website (the top one is old, not sure he keeps goats in Boston)  – http://www.petergalbertchairmaker.com/  and here is Instagram https://www.instagram.com/petergalbert/

the book https://lostartpress.com/collections/books/products/chairmakers-notebook