Women of Woodworking – Danielle Rose Byrd, Bar Harbor, Maine

8 May

IMG_0712Danielle Rose Byrd is a woodcarver who enjoys making bowls, spoons, shrink pots and other utensils. Much like the craft of woodworking itself, there is a welcoming feel to Danielle’s work. Aside from the obvious functionality of kitchenware as a sharing or serving piece, her work is comprehensible. Forms are crafted to please the eye with layers of texture to tease the mind and incite the urge to touch.

Danielle is originally from Maine and has spent almost her entire life there. Her father was a carpenter, and growing up “I got a good dose of hammer swinging,” she says.

IMG_0713She started woodworking in college, and has been professionally for the past six or seven years. Her favorite tool is “A scary-sharp gouge. Or anything sharp that happens to be
within arm’s reach just when I want it. Nothing beats that,” she explains.

Her recent focus has been on bowls. “I’ve been swinging between the extremes of refined, simple forms and rough, wild, and impulsive forms. I like a good mix. I’ve also been working on some angular, large facet shrink pots with those fat lids I like.”

While Danielle is known for her hand carving technique, she is not afraid to explore new horizons and utilize what is discovered in her development of new work. “I recently got a turbo plane power carving disc, and I’m excited to see what comes of that. I love hand tools, but power carving intrigues me,” she explains.IMG_0714

“I find that when I indulge in my interests, even if it doesn’t materialize as something I intend on selling, it usually helps to inform other work in a beneficial way. Sometimes I just have to scratch the itch and that’s enough to inspire me elsewhere.”

Danielle’s work will be on display at Island Artisans gallery in Bar Harbor this summer. To view more of her work or get in touch:

daniellerosebyrd.com
daniellerosebyrd@gmail.com
@danielle_rose_byrd

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Women of Woodworking – Meredith Hart, Durham, North Carolina

26 Apr

IMG_0519When asked, Meredith Hart will tell you she meandered into woodworking. Her background is in art and design, and after college she moved to Vermont to take classes at Yestermorrow Design/Build School. She just so happened to really love the ladder back chair and box making classes. Then, she applied to the North Bennet Street School in Boston, which is where she claims to have really made her start.

Taking a look at Hart’s work, albeit from a distance, it’s hard to believe she aimlessly drifted into something that she has such a natural aptitude for. Her work pairs the restraint of classical styles with modern shapes. Pieces appear to be practical, almost sensible, but a dashing undertone shines through in the details. A seemingly simple table may feature proud, hidden carvings under the top’s edges or crisp, faceted stretchers. IMG_0521

Like a reflection of her own journey into the craft, there is a bit of enchantment in her work that can only be seen if you look closely enough.

Hart is currently working on a commissioned design for a leather top desk that will include brass lion’s feet. A touch of other elements such as metal or glass is another signature in Hart’s balanced compositions.

“I don’t think I’ll ever have a custom project that doesn’t require me to learn something new. That’s what keeps it interesting,” she says.IMG_0520

Her favorite piece of art is Wharton Esherick’s woodcut “Swing.” “With just a few simple cuts the image depicts the pull of gravity and rush of wind in a way that you can almost feel it,” she describes.

Her favorite tool is her Stanley 71 1/2 router plane she acquired while in school in New Hampshire. She now resides in Durham, North Carolina, where she enjoys living between the coast and the mountains.

 

 

To view more of Meredith’s work or get in touch:

MeredithHartFurniture.com
Meredith@MeredithHartFurniture.com
@MeredithHartFurniture

Women of Woodworking Reworked

24 Apr

Recently I received yet another inquiry asking if I could connect a business with a woman woodworker for a potential project. They found my information through my website, specifically my own Women of Woodworking project. It was a long shot for them to reach out but in the end, we were able to get them connected with someone.

Over the past few years I have had to pause this project, with the hopes to restore it and build even more of what has already continued to grow in my absence – a community for women woodworkers.

Inspired, I’ve fired up the old IG account and threw out a few posts. I’ve been blown away by the positive reception. I know now for sure I need to continue to tell the stories of the women that help make this moment in our craft such a beautiful one.

As with any prototype, Women of Woodworking is being slightly reworked from its original version to allow for more frequent posts and varied content as we move forward (including shop tours, videos, and so on). While I am exploring new possibilities and directions for the project, for now, my website ktthompson.com will continue to serve as the series’ official home, as well as our Instagram, @WomenofWoodworking.

Most importantly, I look forward to connecting more interesting people and sharing their unique stories as women in woodworking. Don’t hesitate to leave comments with your favorite crafts women, works or questions you’d like to ask. This is a dynamic community and I encourage the friendly spirit of sharing that woodworking brings out in the best of us.

Untitled V

29 Aug

Sing!

Dance!

Move!

Get going, get living!

There’s music to be shared,

Moves to be made.

Smile,

Laugh,

Play!

Life is too short,

To waste another day.

Droplet

28 Aug

Water running down,

A brown dirt alleyway.

I soak into the soil,

And rise into the stems.

I journey to the tip of a leaf,

And fall back down to the ground.

Running with the water again.

For Hamilton I

27 Aug

Soft little rosebuds smile with glee,

There is no other that can make happy as he.

His blue green eyes, light brown hair,

His cheek are his father’s, and so cute, it’s not fair.

How did I manage to become so blessed?

Especially after horrid moments left me without rest.

I knew his name, I saw him play.

That’s when hope restored me to love another day.

One of the Few Things

26 Aug

Pop, sizzle, fry,

Thud, slice, chop,

It is one of the few things,

That can reach all your senses.

Sometimes it satisfies,

Sometimes it’s sickens,

Sometimes, there’s not enough.

It can portray a personality,

Character, and culture.

It can create wars,

Or ties that bind.

Sitting down, standing up,

With your fingers or a fork,

It’s a language we can all speak,

And enjoy.