Monday, July 18, 2011

Which platters do you like better?

Here are four Ambrosia Maple platters.  They are 16 inches in diameter the overall height is less than 1 inch.  They are made from one wide piece of wood, no glue ups here.  The top picture shows two platters made without center inserts and the bottom picture shows two platters made with center inserts made from 3/16 inch thick green marble which is 6 inches in diameter.  All four platters were made from the same long board.

The discoloration that you see on these platters was actually caused by the Ambrosia beetle and not a dye job by me.  They cause some really neat colors don't they?  Which way do you like best?  With marble centers or without?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Piece in the "Turning 25 - A Celebration" exhibit at the AAW.

Oak Burl Vessel   View 1
 Quite a while ago I did a post about a piece that I was making for the "Turning 25 -  A Celebration" exhibit that is starting this Friday, 6/24, at the yearly symposium of the American Association of Woodturners (AAW) in St. Paul, Minnesota.  Turning 25 - A Celebration came about because the AAW is turning 25 this year and they decided to ask each chapter to enter a piece in an exhibit.  The chapters could do the piece as a collaborative effort amongst the members or choose a member to make the piece.  The only stipulation on the piece was that it couldn't be any larger than 8"x8"x8".  I was elected to make the piece because I was the only person who volunteered to make a piece for our club, the Western Mountain Woodturners.  There are approximately 225 chapters of the AAW world wide and the last that I knew just over 100 chapters were involved in the exhibit.

View 2

The original piece that I was making for the exhibit developed a crack near the bottom as I was thinning the wall down to it's final thickness.  Time was running out so I decided to use a piece that I had turned late last fall.  In the end I think the piece was a more fitting one for the exhibit anyways.  The wood that I used to make my hollow form was Oak Burl and it was won at one of our monthly meetings in our wood raffle.  Harry Burns was the member who had brought the piece of Oak Burl in for our clubs raffle.

View 3

The final dimensions of this piece are 6.5" tall x 8" in diameter.  The wall thickness is approximately 1/8" throughout most of the vessel.  And it weighs in at a whopping 11 ounces.  About 1/3 of the piece is open from natural voids in the wood.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Ryanne's learning to shoot product shots.

It's Ryanne (our oldest daughter) and I alone here today.  Her little sister has gone off for the day to play at a friends house.  Ryanne likes photography and I needed to take some pictures of some mills for the site so I've been teaching her how I take product shots and how to use Photoshop.  This is one of the many pictures that she has taken today.  How did she do?

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The winning color was ....

I would like to thank everyone who voted for helping me choose our next color combination for our mills and spice grinders.  And now without further ado.  Ed the envelope please.  And the winner was (drum roll please) #2 by a huge margin of 2 votes.  It was very close voting right up until the end.  So it's looking like the new color combination for our mills and spice grinders will be #2 the brown, natural & green color combination and it should be out in the not to distant future.  Thanks again to all of those people who voted.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Help me decide.

 I like both of these color combinations as bottle stoppers but I'm trying to decide which color combination should become a future pepper mill.  #1 is one layer each of orange, teal, blue & purple.  #2 is one layer each of brown, natural & green.  In both cases the color combinations repeat over and over.

How often do you get to help a company decide it's future products?  Well, you do now.  So your vote counts.  Get all of your friends and family involved, too.  The more votes the better, so please pass this on to everyone.  Please tell me which color combination you like better, #1 or #2.  I'll keep track of the votes and let everyone know the people's choice on Monday.  Thanks for your help.


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Pens and lots of them!

Acadia Desk Set made in Red with White Lines Acrylic
Would it be bragging if I said that I get to make a lot of pens for people each year?  A lot of people know that I am a self taught woodturner.  What most people don't know is that pens are how I taught myself to turn way back in the spring of 2000.  As I said I make a lot of pens each year, a little over 500 custom pens each year.  I make them from natural woods, dyed woods, colorful acrylics and even a few from deer antler (don't worry the antlers used are what the deer shed each year).  One way to get a pen that is always popular for graduates and retirees alike is as a desk set.  Each desk set consists of a gold Acadia pen, pencil and letter opener in a nice Rosewood box with a tilting glass top.  I usually make up about 30 desk sets each year and right now I'm in the middle of making 18 sets.  Pictured above and below are just a couple of the acrylic desk sets that have recently gone out to new homes.  Let me know what you think of them.

Acadia Desk Set made in Scarlet and Black Acrylic

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

6 pack of natural wood mills.

Last week was a very busy week here and these are just a few of the pieces that I made and shipped out.  Here are six natural wood salt & pepper mills made in the Morrison style.  From front to back they are 6" Walnut, 8" Ash & 10" Cherry.  Notice the beads or rings down near the bottom of each mill.  They help to tell you whether the mill is for salt or pepper.  One bead/ring means that it's a salt mill and three beads/rings means that it's a pepper mill.  Their new home is at the Center for Maine Craft in W. Gardiner, ME.  They also received a new shipment of wood pens too.  If you are traveling in Maine on the turnpike (Rt 95) or on Rt 295 stop at the rest stop in W. Gardiner and you will find the Center on the left just as you enter the building.  The Center is filled with very unique products that are made here in Maine by Maine artisans.  If you get a chance stop by and check the Center out.  You won't be disappointed.