LJ Interviews #36: Monte Pittman

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Blog entry by MsDebbieP posted 02-19-2013 09:21 AM 3216 reads 0 times favorited 29 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 35: gfadvm Part 36 of LJ Interviews series Part 37: StumpyNubs »

This interview with Monte Pittman is from the February 2013 issue of our LumberJocks’ eMag.


1. How did you first get started working with wood?

Partially from both parents believing that is you can make it for yourself, then do so. A lot from my mother. She helped build the dairy barn, house, corrals, made all the kitchen cabinets and living room furniture. At 83 she still does wood burned pictures as well as numerous other arts and crafts.

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2. What was it about woodworking that initially caught your interest, enticing you to get into it at the level you are now?

Really, when I started I would never have dreamed that I would even attempt many of the things that I am doing now. It comes down to: the further I went the further I wanted to go. Then when I found this site I realized that the sky is the limit.

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3. Tell us a bit of history of your journey from that beginning to where you are today

When I started I was happy with a reasonably straight butt joint. I am still not very good at joints, but I am trying much harder. I stare at how seamless many of these folks make theirs and it continues to motivate me to do better.

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4. What inspires you regarding wood creations?

The wood, plain and simple. I love seeing the wood and trying to imagine how I can use it so that I can display it’s beauty.

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5. What are the greatest challenges that you have met along the way? (and how did you overcome them)

The need to learn vs the time to learn. I probably spend way too much time on LJ’s studying everything. I look at every post to get ideas and to learn. Sometimes learning greatly cuts into sleep time, but I hope that this is what i do full-time in the near future.

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6. What is the greatest reward that you have received from woodworking? (personal or tangible)

Probably sounds corny, but my greatest reward has been the people I have met through this site and the information I have learned from them. Irreplaceable.

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7. What is your favourite tool that you use for woodworking?

Hard to say. I slab trees, so right now the chainsaw and soon to be bandsaw mill. It’s the first time I get to see what the wood looks like. Christmas in every tree trunk.

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8. What is your favourite creation in/for your woodworking?

Very hard to say. At this point I still am thrilled with everything I am able to do.

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9. What tips would you give to someone just starting out or currently struggling with woodworking?

I find that virtually all of the mistakes I make are because of a lack of patience and trying to cut corners. You’ll be much happier with the outcome if you take your time to do it right.

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10. How did you find LumberJocks and what is it that keeps you coming back?

Found it on an internet search. What keeps me coming back is the shear artistry of the people that are here and how absolutely wonderful most have been to talk to. It’s like being able to have a conversation with Picaso. Even ones that I haven’t talked to has been an inspiration to me. Evweything from Triferns turnings to Jeffros horse. Things I may never try, still inspire me to try different things.

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Thank-you to Monte for taking the time out of his busy schedule to do this interview!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

29 comments so far

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4168 posts in 3370 days

#1 posted 02-19-2013 10:24 AM

Nice one Debbie & Monte


-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View hunter71's profile


3444 posts in 3700 days

#2 posted 02-19-2013 12:02 PM

Great interview, I like them. It brings us all closer.

-- A childs smile is payment enough.

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 3128 days

#3 posted 02-19-2013 12:19 PM

yes great interview Monte and thanks for #9 i do the same thing and that was great advice

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View helluvawreck's profile


32086 posts in 3380 days

#4 posted 02-19-2013 12:27 PM

Great interview, Monty. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and found that I got to know you better because of it. Thanks.

MsDebbie, thanks for these interviews. Keep ‘em coming.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View jfk4032's profile


375 posts in 3041 days

#5 posted 02-19-2013 12:48 PM

Great interview and background to your woodworking journey Monte. You’ve become a nice online friend and your encouraging and supportive comments always are welcomed. Best wishes going forward to you and your family and your further growth into woodworking.

-- ---Joel; Central MD...rookie empter nester and getting back into woodworking!

View jjw5858's profile


1135 posts in 3116 days

#6 posted 02-19-2013 12:51 PM

Great interview Monte! You inspire me for sure with all of your creative ideas!

All the best!


-- "Always continue to learn, laugh and share!" JJW

View GerardoArg1's profile


1002 posts in 2508 days

#7 posted 02-19-2013 01:14 PM

Great interview Monte!!! Your ideas be inspiration! Greetings from Argentine

-- Disfruta tu trabajo (enjoy your work) (Bandera, Argentina)

View dakotawood's profile


211 posts in 3297 days

#8 posted 02-19-2013 01:48 PM

Great interview Monte. I just want to add a side note as to the character of Monte. We found that we both live in SD. I had asked where he gets his beautiful wood that he uses for a lot of his projects. He then said that he was going to be in my part of the state to mill some trees and he offered to bring some wood for me. What a great gesture and a great person. Thanks Monte.

-- Travis, South Dakota

View prattman's profile


447 posts in 2632 days

#9 posted 02-19-2013 02:11 PM

Great interview Monte, your work and your encouragement inspire me. Thanks Debbie, love the interviews.

-- Everyone calls me Ed or Eddie , mom still calls me Edward if she is mad at me.

View Roger Clark aka Rex's profile

Roger Clark aka Rex

6940 posts in 3949 days

#10 posted 02-19-2013 02:20 PM

Great interview, great guy, great woodworking and great humor. A model LJ, if ever there was one.

-- Roger-R, Republic of Texas. "Always look on the Bright Side of Life" - An eyeball to eyeball confrontation with a blind person is as complete waste of Time.

View Grampa_Doodie's profile


163 posts in 2812 days

#11 posted 02-19-2013 02:53 PM

Very nice interview you two. I especially like your answer to #6 Monte. I too have learned so much from this great community of woodworkers. I’ve never been a part of a nicer, more informative group of people than the I have with the members of


-- If at first you don't succeed...DO NOT try skydiving.

View WoodenFrog's profile


2737 posts in 3427 days

#12 posted 02-19-2013 03:46 PM

Great one Debbie And Monte!!

-- Robert B. Sabina, Ohio.....

View luv2learn's profile


2967 posts in 2817 days

#13 posted 02-19-2013 04:11 PM

Monte, I can relate to your woodworking journey. In fact, I think many of us can. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us. Thank you Debbie for organizing this format.

I have looked at project post of LJ’s from over the globe and realize that the love of woodworking transends language and geography and gives us all a common bond.

-- Lee - Northern idaho~"If the women don't find you handsome, at least they ought to find you handy"~ Red Green

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3822 days

#14 posted 02-19-2013 04:26 PM

Excellent interview..It is always fun to learn more about what learning path and personal paths we all take…and besides, woodworkers are the upper level of quality people in this world.

View MaroonGoon's profile


282 posts in 2472 days

#15 posted 02-19-2013 04:37 PM

Monte, luv2learn is right! I can relate with you because I was inspired to start woodworking for the same exact reason. I don’t know why but the sheer beauty of the seemingly unlimited variety of woods amazes me. The first thing that catches my eye in anyone’s project is posted here is the wood and how beautiful it is. Good luck in future projects!

-- "Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone." -- Pablo Picasso

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