Reply by Joshua Oehler

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Posted on That piece of wood...

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Joshua Oehler

169 posts in 2080 days

#1 posted 08-07-2016 06:13 PM

For me, as corny as this is going to sound, I have a ton of wood that I am waiting for it to tell me what it wants to become. In my area in SW Florida I have no easy access to anything other than typical construction/cabinet lumber. There are no lumbermills/hardwoods dealers or even any Rockler or Woodcraft within a 3 hour 1 way drive from me. Whenever I am out of town once or twice a year I make it a point to find one of these stores to visit. I usually end up buying a couple of nice looking boards and then I bring them back to my shop where they sit on a shelf. It normally sits there until it gives me some inspiration. Some pieces have end up being turned, some lids for boxes and some decided they didn’t want to play nice and got chopped up into small pieces and scattered around to hide the evidence of my failure.

There are times as well that there is some personal connections. For instance I have a. 2” x 8” x 36” piece of walnut sitting in my shop. I got it from my uncles workshop after he passed away a couple summers ago. I intend to do something with it that is special to me that will remind me of my uncle, I am still awaiting the proper project to come to me though.

I also think there is a “fear factor” at times as well. What that fear is could be quite different for everyone but it is still there. When you don’t have access to exotic/figured woods you don’t want to ruin that 1 piece you have. When you don’t have the extra money to spend on lumber you are afraid to ruin the only valuable piece you have. You may not feel confident enough in your technique to use that nice piece so you keep saying you have to practice more. Maybe you even know that that piece of lumber is going to be the doors for one of your bucket list pieces of furniture that you will start on “one of these days” that you just keep putting off because you think its still too much for you to accomplish. Whatever your fear is though that keeps you from making that first cut into that pristine piece of lumber…it all seems to go away as soon as the blade digs in to the wood.

-- - "But old news can change, as memories float downstream. So don't judge me by my failures, only by my dreams"

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