shelter story

walnut 2021 –

These two pieces are from a walnut tree in a nearby park that was felled by one of this winters storms. I’m lucky to get some of it. Never had walnut before (just a small piece from my neighbours that is still waiting to be shaped).

The second piece (standing) becomes twist.






After removing the bark some thin layer of it remains and changes colour when exposed to the air. I have to keep my inner perfectionist in check while removing this residue… It is a typical 80/20 situation and I can spend the other 80% of my time in better ways! I remove most of it to get a clearer visual impression of the form. Otherwise the eyes would linger on those darker spots and patterns being distracted from the overall movement.

Its just the naked piece without the bark and I already love it. And I love the idea of what this is to me. It has this encompassing gesture to it starting with the branch but also in the movement of the larger part. I can stand behind it, put my arms around it in imitation of that gesture, and it feels good!

After yesterday excitement there is now a sense of… I could nearly call it disappointment. I guess I miss the joy of this journey of discovery. The phase of not knowing and finding out. Now it seems there is just the work to do.

Of course there are still things to discover. The idea has to take shape. But I know where I’m going now. And I also know its hard work to get there because I have to take so much material our of there. Also: the wood in the area where the branch goes off is quite hard. I need to be careful not to break the knife again…

Maybe its lying?










That was a good idea! It starts to make sense. Otherwise it had too much similarity with hand. Still there is a lot of stuff to loose. And its especially hard when working at the ends of the piece.


I think the range of the tools will determine part of the form: the depth, where to go lower with the rim etc.




And then there is the occasional „suprise“ inside which I have to take into account. Supposedly two unrelated spots one in the fork of the branch, the other at the bottom. But they are connected as it turns out…










I was complaining about rasping and grinding the oak (wave) after the softer wood of the elder pieces. But this is not exactly easy as well…