In this post, I am offering a glimpse into my working process. One of the main elements in my Keeps is wood and in this particular case, Black Locust. The wood that I use is harvested from fallen (not felled) trees and is cut into manageable sized logs on site with my trusty chainsaw. Then I load the material into my (also trusty) pickup and transport it to my studio for further processing. The next step is to cut off both ends of the log. This is done to square up the ends and remove any wood that has begun to split...
Once I square up the ends of the log, I make a cut down the length of the log through the pith, which is the concentric center of the growth rings of the tree. Once this cut is made, the log opens up like a book to reveal its story. As a potter, this first read gives me the same awesome sensation of opening a kilnload of freshly fired pottery. Many folks equate it to a kid on Christmas morning, and rightly so!
After cutting the log into two halves, I take it to the band saw where I lay the flat face down against the saw table and cut the sides square to the cut face. Then I fasten the wood to a jig and cut the bark side of the log away. I now have a thick piece of lumber, soon to be part of a Keep!
This slab can be left as is or cut down into thinner pieces depending on what type of lid I intend to make out of the wood. The slabs are sealed and left to dry for a year or more. In my next blog post, I will explain where the slab goes from here. I would like to thank my wonderful life partner, Amy Heinbuch for taking these great photographs and thank YOU for checking in!