Being a wood turning novice you would think that I would start out with soft woods and turning pens or pencils only. After all, that is how my husband started years ago as well as countless other people now bitten by the wood turning bug. Not me! No, I have neither done things half way nor eased into anything that is extremely difficult.

If I can visualize myself doing it then, by golly, I can do it. Or so I think. I don’t need to slow down, take baby steps, walk before I run. Oh no! I am out there doing the marathon from day one! Of course this leads to a lot of frustration, and a few temper storms, on my part as I realize that I do not possess the needed skills or talent to accomplish my goal.

This beautiful Ambrosia Maple bowl is clear evidence of my drive and passion, but also, sadly, of my inexperience in wood turning.

“What shape do you want the finished bowl to have?” my husband asked after he set the garage up for a day of wood turning.

“I want it to be hippy,” I said as I snapped the final snap on my wood turning jacket. I knew exactly what I wanted the piece to look like in the end, but, like most novices, was clueless as to how I was actually going to achieve that goal.

“How hippy?” my husband asked again trying to calculate exactly how to mount the six by four inch block of wood onto my lathe.

“Very. Like me,” I quipped, but he was so concentrated on helping me see the practical step that needed to be next completed that the quip passed him by.

He grabbed a pencil and the block of wood and began extolling the different ways of mounting this block and what type of shape the bowl would take due to the way it was mounted.

I tried to pay attention to my instructor, I truly did, but all I could see was the vessel that lay within the uneven block and was itching to bring it out.

We finally mounted the block in such a way that would best facilitate the shape I knew was right for it. Roughing gouge in hand, I eagerly set to the time consuming, exhausting, painstakingly slow task of rounding the square block.

Oh this was just the first step! Once it was round, I then needed to rough shape the outside and bottom of the bowl. I had to make a small foot in the bottom for the chuck to hold onto when I turned to bowl around to smooth out the outside shape and hollow out the inside.

I’d like to say these steps went hummingly along without a single hiccough from either the wood or myself, but I think more than one of you who know me best would have reason to say otherwise.

Talking me through each step, forcing me to see reason and practicality when all I could or would see was the creation, my husband helped me bring into existence this beautiful vessel.

I thought I could make it happen, and I did, with help from a much more experienced, talented and accomplished wood turner than I.

I recently read an article that it is a good idea for writers to find themselves critique partnerships. People who can look at your plot line and help you refine it as you write. It now occurs to me that creative people need partners no matter the medium.

Just having a story to tell isn’t good enough though. Sometimes you need another eye on the mechanics of your story, another person looking at your plots, asking the right questions. Sometimes, most times, you need someone to help get that manuscript to drip with eloquence the way you know it can.

Don’t go at it alone and produce simply ok work. Get help and bring out the published novel you know lies within the pages of your rough manuscript.


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. TheOthers1
    Feb 21, 2012 @ 21:20:11

    Truth to that last part about finding partners. Someone to help refine your vision into the literary gold that you know it is.

    Wood turning? I’ve never heard of that before. Sounds interesting.


    • makergoddess
      Feb 22, 2012 @ 05:38:20

      Wood turning is done on a lathe. We bought a monster of a lathe for my husband about seven years ago. This past Christmas we bought one for me that is about one-third the size. It can be a very addicting hobby! 🙂


  2. fivereflections
    Feb 22, 2012 @ 23:09:17

    beautiful bowls

    david in Maine USA


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