Inspired by a local woodturner

Woodturner Glenn Robison makes bowls and pieces with a lathe and recycled wood. Here, he filled a knot in the wood with turquoise flakes. All of these photos are by News-Sentinel photographer Brian Feulner.

As the editor/writer of the weekend arts, entertainment, lifestyle section of a newspaper, I get the opportunity to meet and write about so many different people. Of course there are the token odd-balls and lame-o stories, but most of the time, my subjects are fascinating. I especially love writing about the creative people. I love seeing how they work and where they create the magic.

Glenn Robison is one person I recently profiled. He uses a lathe to literally turn hunks of wood into beautiful bowls. The best part is, he doesn’t buy any wood. All of it — birch, palm, oak, cork oak, juniper, elm, cherry, walnut — is recycled, mostly given to him by neighbors who go hunt for firewood or are just cleaning up their own yards.

But, as I watched him use these long, metal hand tools to shave the wood into a shape, I thought, I this is something I could do. OK, so I especially thought that after I saw that some of his pieces had $400 and $900 price tags on them. (I mean, hello: In debt college grad who’s looking for a little extra wiggle room in her budget!) By no way am I saying what he does is easy! He let me and my photographer, Brian, try it out, and Glenn did keep a pretty steady grip on my hand. But, I still think it’s something I could learn.

Aside from his craft, Glenn and his wife, Pat, were really cool. They have this awesome house full of windows that they designed themselves in the 1950s. Wooden piece of art are everywhere — on bookshelves beside design books, on the fire place, even in his garden. They are children of a 1960s Berkeley, so they have a little free-flowing, pseudo-hippie vibe to them. Very cool.

Now I’m on my quest to 1.) finish up some other projects, and 2.) save a little cash to buy a used lathe on Craigslist.

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5 Responses to Inspired by a local woodturner

  1. connetta says:

    the price is out of my price range..but i would be really fun to watch him do his craft…around Hocking county, in Ohio, there’s a man who carves bears,eagles,mushrooms etc.. out of stumps of wood, he sits by the river alongthe road, people stop and watch him. he’s very good. I find these artists very interesting. wish i could do that.

  2. lucy says:

    Time for a message from your biggest fan.

    Hello Lorena, its me…..LUCY! I always love your posts, you always find such interesting people/stuff to blog about. I always blog about myself. Wel,l because I find myself interesting and my world revolves around me. Ok, enough about me, I wish I could go on your little assignments just so I could chit chat w/these folks. You know how much I like to do that. But then you might get sick of hearing the same ol’ story I always tell…. and stick a sock in my mouf. That would not be a good outcome.

  3. Lucy says:

    Oh and I forgot to mention how much I love that he filled the knots in that bowl with turquoise. Beeeee yoo ti ful

  4. Jen Howell says:

    oh… i see how it is! uh huh! busted! you know what I am talking about. So you have to crop my photos big whoop…. I am going to the publisher…. LOL! Not. I will start recycling to earn some change for the lathe…

  5. Wood Turner says:

    I love the turqoise accents used to fill the voids in the bowl. Very nice work and a great article too.

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