I have been continuing to spend most of my spare time in the shop.  It seems that my creative interest lay squarely in 3 pursuits.  If you have been following my blog long then you probably already know that those pursuits are drawing, photography, & woodworking.  I don’t seem to have the ability to focus on all three at once.  Instead my natural instincts are to focus on each one singularly.  I’m not sure if this is a hindrance or an asset to my creative growth. On one hand it is good that I naturally want to focus my efforts into a single medium…but, on the other hand, does this narrow my opportunities in other creative forms?  I’m not sure.  This is a topic that I will continue to ponder and I may begin to write a few blog posts on this subject.

What about you?  Do you bounce around between different creative pursuits or are you hyper focused on mastering a singular skill?  I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on the subject.

Sorry, I went off on a bit of a tangentback to The Shop Update

For the last couple of weeks I have filled a few Etsy orders and I have spent some time building an item for myself.  This may come as a surprise but I rarely have the opportunity to actually build something that I want for myself.

Lately, I have been drawn to seating, particularly chairs & stools.  I have never built any type of seating before so, I decided to attempt to build a stool that I could use at my workplace.  I poked around the internet to find some inspiration and that inspiration was found in a stool designed by Filip Gordon Frank.  I liked the clean lines and overall shape of the stool.  Since I am making this for myself I didn’t see any harm in mimicking his design.  I would never take someone else’s design and try to claim it as my own or reproduce it for profit.  Anyway,  I put together a sketch to determine the correct height and geometry the stool would need to make it fit the use I hand in mind.

I decided to use walnut and oak because of the strong color contrast that these two species would provide.  The rear legs & foot rest are walnut, the front legs and back rest are oak.  The seat is a combination of both species.

Below are a few shots of the build process.  I started out by milling some rough sawn walnut to build the rear legs and seat supports.  Each side of the stool was assembled first so I could ensure symmetry.  Once the sides where completed I added the rear stretcher, foot rest, back rest, & seat.

Below are a few shots of the completed stool.  Click on any of the images below to see a larger version and description.

Thanks for reading my post.  I hope you enjoyed it.

Mike L.

11 thoughts on “ Shop Update 02 ”

    1. That’s a good question. Honestly, I don’t really know. I have only sat on the stool about an hour so far. It will be interesting to see how it holds up to use. The seat supports can hold my entire body weight at the front edge of the seat. That’s around 170 lbs.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Wow! What a gorgeous piece.

    “What about you? Do you bounce around between different creative pursuits or are you hyper focused on mastering a singular skill? I would be interested in hearing your thoughts on the subject.”

    I most definitely bounce between different pursuits. For me they are Urban Sketching, portrait drawing, and woodcut printmaking. I also like drawing old cars. I have interest in textile design as well. Sometimes I worry that I should focus on just one thing, and I also worry that stylistically I switch to differing looks too often. I found that worrying too much about this will often shut my artwork down completely which is quite frustrating.

    When I’m not worried so much about these things I make a lot more stuff! And generally I will focus on just one area for a period of time, like 2-3 weeks. Interestingly there are times when projects that seem completely unrelated inform each other. It seems to me that you may experience this also. In this recent project of yours for example you made a stool out of wood. But that is a gross oversimplification. You were also concerned with material choices, line, shape, balance, symmetry, color/ value/ contrast, surface sheen, and other considerations. So many of these things apply to drawing and photography as well!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for taking the time to put together such a thoughtful response. It seems that we share some commonalities when it comes to our creative energies. I too get bogged down or in a creative rut when I become too concerned that I am neglecting other creative interests. Perhaps I should follow your lead, not worry about it, and just go with the flow.
      Thanks for pointing out how different mediums can still relate to one another and even though the work flows are very different the aesthetic concerns are still related. I haven’t thought about it in that way before.


  2. Wow, such elegance and precision. I was curious about the design that inspired you, googled the designer, found it, and I see you made some subtle changes that make it even nicer, like the tapering back legs, and the more acute angle the foot support has. The woods are beautiful together, too. The photography is perfect….I’m new here (thanks for the follow) so I’ll have to take a look around!
    Your musings on being focused on one or more creative pursuits – I like to think creativity flows through a life, and connects various parts of it.

    Liked by 1 person

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