Saturday, January 27, 2018

black walnut curl

This spoon I made as a trade to a spoon make in San Diego named Al Rodriguez. My brother brought my attention to a video of this man making a spoon. I contacted him and he said he would trade me the one he made in the video! This is my first spoon trade if you can believe it.

The design for this spoon kind of surprised me. I had on my heart to make another spoon similar to the little yew one I made for my sister. This one is much larger, but had a similar shape. The overlapping edge on the handle took it in a different direction, but I still feel like these spoons are closely related. Interesting that I was visiting her when I determined to make this trade.

little black walnut

A very sweet friend of my family gave me a ride from Humboldt back up to Portland after I visited my sister's farm in the fall. Ginny would not accept gas money, so I made her a spoon. It is the first one I have made with a hole through it for a cord. I included this cord I'd made in the summer from various animal hairs, including my own. What animal do you think  is there on the handle of this spoon?

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Madrone with beach stone

I got this piece of madrone wood from the trunk of a small tree that I cut in a brush clearing session at my sister's place in Humboldt. At that time I was becoming friends with someone named Katrina by e-mail. When I showed her the spoons I make she said she would like to have one. That matched up with my desire to give her one, and I felt this was the right one to give her because of the time that the wood came into my hands. It also has an elegance that matches her way with language, and the white of it symbolizes the purity of heart I felt in our early correspondence. These spoons can be a reminder to feed each other the spiritual bread that is the best nourishment. That is something I greatly cherish in the exchange with Katrina.

(here is a picture from the first carving stage after rough shaping with a hatchet)

I have made two of these split spoons with an orb like a seed or stone left in the middle. These were the ones for Andre and Cynthia. This is the second one on which I took out all the wood between the split handle. The previous one I made out of lodge pole pine and gave to Katrina's house mate, Roger. I thought maybe an actual stone or seed would go in the space. I almost sent the spoon to Katrina empty, that she could find a stone herself. I had tried to find the right one but nothing fit or felt right. At the time I was just about ready to send it I happened to join some friends to a beach called Wash-away Beach near Raymond, WA. On this beach were countless small, round, smooth stones to choose from. I didn't find many that would fit the small space of this spoon, but these two seemed right. I had thought it would be a single stone, but two felt better for some reason. I wonder if there is something to that...

Thursday, December 28, 2017

redwood snail

I was given a piece of redwood by my friend Joseph while visiting my sister in Humboldt a couple years ago. From the same piece of wood I made a spoon for Joseph and for Infinite Link (pictures forthcoming).

I sent out a notice on Facebook at that time to see if anyone would like me to make them a spoon. I got two responses, and one of them was from my old friend Nuria. She was moving to a new house and needed a new tea scooping spoon. When I asked her whether she had any particular ideas for a spoon design she mentioned some woods, but otherwise left it completely up to me. I felt it out and landed on using this piece of redwood that had a big, unusual knob on one end. For some reason I had cut the blank this way... I saw a snail in it and began the rough shaping.

It is ironic how this project stalled for so long, finally being completed more than a year and a half after starting. It was my slowest process ever. Sometimes I am just waiting for the right energy or inspiration that will push me through the challenging hurdle in the design. The shell was confounding me, but then while I was staying with this community in Raymond recently I found the right peaceful, supportive atmosphere in which to approach it. It was like a floodgate opening!

When my father saw this spoon finished it might be my masterpiece. I give all the credit to the brilliant one who created me and fills me with life and the power to create. I am amazed!

Friday, December 15, 2017

Camp Spatula

I had been wanting to make a spatula for a while. My friend Nathan had recently finished one that was pretty styling and I wanted to see what would come through my hands. So when this woman Anna I met at the Orcas ferry landing asked me to make her a camp spatula I knew it was destiny! Soon after putting the wish out there to find the perfect piece of wood for it, my mother brought along a huge trunk of Lilac she had gotten from a job recently. At the base it was just wide enough for this small spatula! Perfect!

The blank was roughed out with a hatchet at my teacher Walter Henderson's community wood shop. I have been practicing roughing out blanks with a hatchet more lately. I want to get a good hewing hatchet of my own, but any sharp hatchet or ax will do in a pinch. The shop has a couple really nice ones. In roughing out the handle end I saw the face of an animal and tried to bring out the spirit of a fox there. Nobody I asked saw a fox, but someone saw the doglike nose as I had. I suppose it could be whatever you see it as. I have been wanting to try carving a spoon handle in the design of the canoes used by people in the Salish Sea.

The design of this handle is largely inspired by this shape, and also just came along through happenstance.

This was a great pleasure to carve! I want to make more spatula!

Friday, December 1, 2017

pitch wood fir

When I was at Walter Henderson's community wood shop the other day I found a piece of firewood that was full of pitch. I felt like making it into a spoon, and this is what came through. I almost completed it in that first day. Lots of fun! I gave it to Maggie Clogston to help with her kitchen magic.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

grandparent plum

When I was in Humboldt helping my sister at her farm in the Spring I had the pleasure of meeting her husband's grandparents and doing some garden work for them. One task I performed was to prune off a large branch from an old plum tree at the entrance of the garden. It seemed to have some good colors inside and I thought maybe I could get some good spoons out of it. I asked if I could take a piece, and said I would make them a spoon from it. Many months later I completed this sturdy beauty.