Bringing It Into Focus

I sat down this morning to force myself to bang out a blog post, I guess I did, but not the one I started with.

Nearly every blog I've ever read, with a few exceptions, eventually comes to a similar post. After a year or more of inactivity, the author writes a big post covering the changes in life that lead to the absence and makes promises for renewed output, reinvigorated content, and regular submissions because "new big stuf is happening."

Maybe there will be one more post about the next great project. Then there will be another lag of time. Then if us loyal readers are lucky there is a post admitting defeat and calling things to an end. I hate this circling of the toilet bowl process. I've hated watching it here.

For a while I've struggled with what I intend to do here.

I've looked at it from several angles.

The original intent was two fold. As a near daily journal of my work in the shop and as an exercise in improving my ability to write.

As things picked up steam I began to get some notice, some notoriety, albeit a light version of celebrity for it. It's a weird thing to walk around handworks and have perfect strangers recognise you. The goals changed and I wasn't writing just for myself but for an audience. Anyone who tells you that isn't the case or doesn't happen to them is selling you something. The combination of ego and wanting to be helpful drives this more than anything.

As life has interfered and gotten in the way, I've written less and less here. It's not a lack of ideas, I have several dozen notes and started posts here and in the Notes area of my iPhone. It's a honest lack of desire to apply ass to chair and stare at the computer screen. Hell I hardly feel like checking my email anymore.

Here's the real size of things.

There are rhythms to an artistic / creative life. It's an accepted cycle in the Capital "A" Art World. There are periods of Exhibition, where a collection of work is curated and displayed and words are spilled about all the things.

Then there are the Studio stages of the process. Introvertive work, head in the sand as time passes and themes are followed and focused. Nearly everyone hears of elitist phrases like "This painting was done by Picasso during his Blue Period,"  but that marketing crap is representative of the cycle itself.

I feel like I'm in the beginning steps of one of those studio stages. For years I've built things, many things. Some of them have been good, but most of them have been copies of other's work. I'm entering a time where I finally like what I'm turning out. It sounds like a weird thing, but I think others who create from nothing can understand. It takes time and effort and experimentation to become comfortable in your own voice and your own taste.

Proficient enough to translate that voice into reality. Comfortable enough to think "I really have something here." Yes you could still say my work is derivative, like the piece here I'm calling a seven board chest. I would argue all work is derivative.

Here's what is happening.

I have decided to unburden myself of the bagage of feeling like I have to post regularly. I'm sorry if this disappoints you, understand I don't feel responsible for your entertainment. I am not abandoning anything. By all means please keep me as part of your reader/aggregator program and checkback from time to time. Subscribe using the button at the top to get emailed about posts. All of those things.

I will continue to build furniture in my studio.
I will continue to create illustrations, watercolors, woodcut prints, and other Capital "A" art in my second studio.
I will be starting to pursue opportunities to teach woodworking classes. This possibility excites me.
I will post about those opportunities here and on social media.
I will be working on some video content.
I will continue to record my work and I will continue to share when I feel like I have something worthwhile to share.

All updates and real news will still be announced / explored here. I will post when I have something that burns in me to share. If you really want to see the day to day in the shop I will continue to share photos on Instagram under, oldwolf_workshop

Thank you for the support me up to this point, and thank you for the continuing support me in the future.

Ratione et Passionis


  1. I understand and respect your honesty. Good luck with your studio time. I look forward to whatever you have to share.
    best wishes,
    Ian Waltenbery


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