From a backyard hobby to a lucrative career, back to a backyard hobby – Woodworking has been part of my life forever.
If you punch ‘woodwork’ into google, you get thousands and thousands of results. Woodsmen and women around the world, some professionals, some hobbyists, are living their best lives creating furniture, art, décor, and gadgets out of wood. Ask any keen carpenter why they love woodworking and then grab yourself a cuppa and settle in because their list of reasons might take a while to reel off. Here are some reasons why I love woodworking.
You know when you’re working on something and it’s just challenging enough but not too hard that you kind of get lost in the moment and you lose track of time? That feeling is called ‘flow’. Nothing gets me into my flow zone more than planning, measuring, cutting, carving, planning, and sanding (ok, I admit sanding is not my favourite but you get the idea). Woodworking is a wonderful cant-stop-thinking-about-it kind of endeavour where you can often find your current project taking up real estate in your dreams each night. It’s enjoyment you just can’t put down.
Woodwork is the perfect mix of intellect and hands-on artistry, and in this modern world, it sure is nice to have something so tangible and long-lasting. You think of a thing, you make the thing, the thing is good. It’s a delightfully simple process and the sense of accomplishment is second to none.
Not to get too sappy (pardon the pun), but woodwork is primal and ritualistic. I love the feeling of finding a great piece of wood and adding to Its story. From commercially cut wood, to storm felled trees, to driftwood, each piece of wood carries a story that I become a part of. That piece of wood is transformed into something useful, beautiful, or both. Often, that piece of wood will be around long after I’m dead.
One of my favourite parts of woodworking is having my own retreat in the backyard with all of my tools. When I finish a piece, I love to grab a beer and potter around my workshop carefully sharpening my tools and putting them away in their own special spot. I then sweep the floor of my shed and call the wife in. We both pull up stumps in front of my finished piece and admire it over a beverage or 2 …buuuut it’s not long before I get those itchy hands and I start the process all over again. There really is nothing quite as satisfying as woodworking.