My wife and I were helping my brother-in-law to clean out my 91 year old mother-in-law’s house after she moved to the old folks home. Over the years I had made her some things. I liked to give her stuff because she actually seemed to like it (poor deluded women), and she had almost all of it on display here and there.
My brother-in-law had given a lot of her old furniture (from the 30’s) to a young fellow who appreciates old furniture and wants to use it in his cabin. While there to pick the stuff up, he spotted some closed forms I had turned during my ‘bottle period’. He asked me what they were, so I handed one to him and he seemed absolutely fascinated when I explained what they were and how they were made.
I could see the gleam in this young man’s eyes as he looked them over closely and marveled at their light weight and the tiny hole that they were turned through. I asked him if he would like to have them and he immediately took me up on the offer. Then I asked him if it interested him in learning to turn, which he responded positively to.
Well, he lives a long way off (a 5 hour drive) from where I live, otherwise I would have been glad to introduce him to some turning, but anyway, I hope he will be inspired to eventually give it a try.
I myself was fascinated at a very young age with a bowl my brother turned at school, and that was my inspiration for starting woodworking with a lathe. I often wonder what inspired others to start woodworking. Was it a wooden object, tools, a person, or what?
There is a famous painting by a Norwegian artist, Theodore Kittelsen showing a boy about 13 years old hiking in the mountains and seeing a scene like my photo below and dreaming that it is a golden palace where he can find wealth and happiness. Maybe he is a metaphor for how our woodworking dreams got us started.
Please forgive the sentimentality, but I couldn’t help myself.
-- Mike, an American living in Norway.