I've been thinking lots lately about why I love spoon carving and it always comes back to time. When I sit down with a piece of wood, I lose myself to the process and for a few moments, or hours really, I become consumed with the task of turning a random piece of wood into a functional kitchen tool. Wood which is little more than debris or even compost, has a life still full of potential if just given the chance. And the shape of spoons are quite forgiving. One doesn't need to be an artist to rough-out something functional. Maybe even beautiful... You just have to go at it and keep at it. It will get there. As the time passes and the form begins to take shape, a spoon will emerge along with parts of oneself; parts you might not have realized you've been hiding.
The spoons aren't all perfect. Rarely do they begin as true love, but again, time has its own way with magic and as with most things, it seems to heal the pains that came before it. Frequently it's towards the end, after a spoon is carved and sanded that I give it the appreciation it so deserves. A little bit of oil helps preserve the wood and reveal the grain. Similar to scares, the grain and gouges tell a story and almost immediately I realize how overrated perfection is. My spoons are misshapen The handles are crooked and the balance is sometimes wonky. But when has life ever come with an easy grip that's perfectly balanced? Rarely are our stories that simple.
If you are looking for something quick then perhaps carving is not for you. But if you are trying to slow down, working though something painful, or need an escape while resting in place, then go make something designed to serve you. It doesn't have to be a spoon. Make something you want. There is no greater joy than that which you make for yourself and there's no better time spent than the hours investing in you. The journey lives in the process and your story might benefit from a reminder. If you slow down and listen, time will tell you everything.
Next workshop: May 12th, 2018; Ticket details here.