The house and shop are moving along. Today the garage was insulated and the new slab was poured last week. We are excited to get in and get going. This is a picture of one of the new tenor guitars I have been making. The neck is from the birch tree I planted when I was in 6th grade. The face and body are made from Quilted Maple and mahogany that my friend Mason gave me this winter.
This guitar has a neck made from a tree I planted in 6th grade. It was harvested when I was 44. I have air dried the wood and made myself a tool cabinet and some carvings. I am using the rest of the boards to make some funky guitars. This one has an essay decorating it which tells the story of the Arbor Day in 6th grade when I received the tree. It goes on to tell about my personal history with the tree. It is the first traditional guitar I made and the essay tells what I learned while creating it. I have created a symbolic alphabet that mimics our alphabet and written on the top , bottom and sides.
I recently visited my good friend Keun Ho Peter Park in Philadelphia. We teach summer workshops together in stringed instrument making. He is currently teaching a creative instrument class at The University of the Arts. I stopped by to teach a turning workshop and he showed me all the great instruments they are working on. Here he is playing the new electric guitar he made, he also shared the finer techniques of saw playing.
I had a great winter teaching and making at The Center For Furniture Craftsmanship. I am now traveling and have time to share some of the projects I worked on. My first project in December was a Ukulele commission for my friend Bruce. He wanted a Uke that would inspire him as an artist. I wrote an essay about my life as an artist and transcribed it into Wing Ding Font. I wrote inside and outside on a body that is our Strumfactory.com style. Here are some pictures. Click here to read Bruce’s essay about the uke.
You have your new instrument so now what do you do? You mess around until you find the beginning of a song or a chorus and then try to work out the whole song. It is fun and meditative. It doesn’t always work out like you think (speaking as a person who was not formally trained in music). For instance, one day I was trying to play “Brown Eyed Girl”, and I came up with, “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”. I just went with it. This is the fun of playing.
We added some songs to try out on your Strumpets here —–>SONGS. If you have received an instrument, you have no doubt worked out some songs of your own and we would love to hear them.
There are still some instruments left and there is still time to ship before the holidays.