Wood turning is not weaving, although wood is a kind of fiber. I have always loved wood shops and lumberyards. The feel of the wood. The tools. In high school I took a class in woodworking--the only girl in a sea of boys. The boys were quite helpful to this ignorant student. From time to time, the itch to start working in wood has made itself known. Realizing that my husband would hit the ceiling if I took on another hobby, I kept it under control. But I do love wood.
Woodturning is not weaving. Still, wood is a kind of fiber. And creative artists in other areas often have things to say that transcend their own media. This, I believe is the case with Bill Luce, wood turner.
There is an interesting piece in the June 2008 issue of The Crafts Report. Another of my fantasies is to become a professional weaver. So on occasion I pick up this most interesting periodical. This June issue contains an interview with a wood turner by the name of Bill Luce.
At the end of the article, Luce explains that he is driven to creating work that is fulfilling his own vision of the piece more than he is driven to creating work for large monetary gains. The implication of this, of course, is that he could make more money if he were to choose the alternate route. In the final paragraph, the author gives the following quotation from Luce:
If we don't create work guided from within, how will we ever create truly great work?....Merely guessing what might please someone else just can't take you to that same level of creativity, innovation and excellence. (page 27)
My weaving path, these past few years, has definitely been guided by my own inner stirrings and needs, not by what someone has told me to do, nor by what I think I ought to be doing. Certainly not by the market. I am fortunate that I do not need to worry about the market. Or perhaps that is not a fortunate thing. Sometimes I do wonder.
But, though I follow my own path, I cannot possibly aspire to the levels Luce is talking about. Still, those levels do exist in my imagination as a kind of ultimate and unachievable ideal.