Tuesday, March 16, 2010
closed for business
This past week I have really started trying to get loose ends tied up and end the AZ experience. Most of it is mundane paperwork to cancel the business license, close up shop and push the inventory into boxes. Doing final projects, maintenance on the lathe, putting an edge on the turning tools and stuffing it all into the belly and living quarters of the RV. OK I bought a couple of tools too, but it's FESTOOL and it is massively discounted.
Tonight I got a phone call from a Prescott based wood turner who was disappointed to hear that I was leaving AZ. He had planned to invite me to do some demos in woodturning for the Prescott Area Branch of the Arizona Woodturners Association. Nothing specific, not a topic that anyone of them could not have done, just a different perspective. Now kids this is a first for me here in AZ. I have done a bottle stopper demo at the Phoenix Woodcraft, have taught classes in woodturning there too but nothing more than intermediate techniques.
I frequently take my projects into work to have a critique session with the more advanced turner, the finishing guy or the carving instructor and at times to just irritate the guy who cannot complete a successful turning project that does not involve a pen kit. Sometimes I ask the opinion of a customer who is a turner or carver and enjoy the differing opinions. Most of the time if it comes off the lathe and I am happy with the shape and the finish I will stick it into the display cabinet with a project completed by Shawn B. Riley card on the shelf next to it. Funny thing is that I think of my self as a beginner or intermediate turner. Much to my surprise I generally get some helpful comments and the occasional compliment. It's good for the ego, I get some good ideas and more fuel for experimenting with shapes or techniques.
So much to my surprise, tonight, a guy who has come into the store, has seen my projects, is generally a nice guy, and who is very enthusiastic about turning, calls me on the phone after hearing from one of his friends that I am leaving town. Wow. We talked about his health as he suffers from chronic troubles with his back and legs, talked about the Prescott wood turners, talked about what projects we are working on and finally he expressed his disappointment that he never took the opportunity to invite me up to one of the Prescott clubs meetings to have me (yep me) give a demonstration on wood turning. When I asked him what stood out in his mind about my work that would have made me the guy whom their club would benefit from my demonstration, his reply was simply "sometimes it's nice to see someone do something that they (the club members) just haven't thought of yet." These guys, who come into the store' apparently discuss the single piece lidded boxes that I turn with long finials and delicate stems. I think of them as continuing works in progress. They have visited my ETSY site and downloaded the pictures of these boxes for discussion at their meetings. WOW!
Ok so now that my ego is boosted and I have been invited to join an exclusive online woodturners group, I just might start raising my prices, make a video and be all snooty and stuff.