Green Woodworking at Malham Tarn
- Centre: Malham Tarn
- Tutor: Richard Law
- Dates : Friday 31 August to Sunday 02 September
- Level: Open for Everyone
- Non-Resident: £170
- Shared Room: £225
- Sole Occupancy: £245
For thousands of years craftsmen have worked wood using simple tools - axes, chisels, a pole lathe and shaving horse. During this weekend in the woods at Malham Tarn, learn how to select wood and make a shrink pot.
Shrink pots are containers traditionally made in Scandinavia using the shrinking action of wood as it dries to tighten a wooden base into a hollowed out log. The simple method of making lends itself to much design freedom from a simple vase from log with the bark left on, to a carved and painted exterior with a carved lid.
This course is suitable for all levels of experience from beginner to those already having some wood working skills. We will move between outdoor work space in the woods and indoor work room as necessary.
Friday evening: introduction and slide show of Richard's workshop at Strid Wood.
Saturday am: Visit the woodland around Tarn House and collect samples of timber
Discussion of timber properties
Making a simple pot without shrunk in base using drill and tenoner
Discussion of design possibilities for this simple pot
Saturday pm: Talk on how a shrink pot is made and demonstration of techniques
Making a small shrink pot
Discussion of design possibilities for a shrink pot
Saturday evening: group discussion of the qualities of hand-made objects finishes for woodenware
Introduction to books as sources for green wood work projects
Sunday: Revisit woodland to look for inspiring shapes in branch-wood
Completion of shrink pot project and/or further shrink pot project(s)
Discussion of possible decorative techniques;
Application of decoration to finished projects
Richard Law works out of doors under a shelter in Strid Wood at Bolton Abbey on the Duke of Devonshire's estate. Using traditional tools and unseasoned woods sourced from his thinning of the woodland, he makes a range of wooden artefacts from spoons to chairs and tables, many as commissioned projects. He also runs courses for groups or individuals.
Working in the woodland, Richard creates furniture that gives timber from Strid Wood trees a longer life using a craft thousands of years old. His pieces have a purpose and emphasise the natural sinuousness of the indigenous hardwoods. While close to nature, his work uses traditional construction methods.
When Richard works with the pole lathe he is reminded that he is working in the way craftsmen have done for thousands of years. Each piece begins with the selection of wood from the trees he has felled, occasionally being able to select interesting timber from wood previously allocated as firewood! Richard knows when a piece is done when it is good enough, perfection is never just around the corner. When his work is going well Richard is filled with a sense of completion and he enjoys seeing people smile when they see his work.
You can find out more about Richard on his website: www.flyingshavings.co.uk
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This course is now historical and therefore no bookings can be taken.
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