A New Skill Set
Wood Flower Hollow Form is Maple Burl that features turning, carving and staining. The first step is to turn the form. The style is a Hollow Form which is basically a piece with an opening that is smaller than the diameter. To make a piece like Wood Flower Hollow Form a Maker must develop the skill to pull this off. It does take practice and patience. Special hook shape tools enter the hole and begin to peel away layers of the interior wood. The tricky part is that the turner cannot see the tool cutting the wood which is visible with bowl. The turner relies on constant measuring with calipers and listening to the sound of the cutting to form a uniform thin wall.
Hollow Form turning was developed by David Ellsworth in the 1970’s. It was popular with glass blowers and ceramists. David sought to make wood forms in this style. The challenge is that the woodturning process removes material. Ceramics and glass add material and the artist has a chance to correct an error by adding more material.
From Utility to Art Form
This technique was revolutionary to make woodturning an art form. Ellsworth teaches this technique with other turners. Because of his openness there is a tradition that if you ask a woodturner how they make something that they will share their knowledge. This is not true in the other crafts. Ask a jeweler how they make a piece and chances are you will not get an answer.
Here is a link to another hollow form piece Shot Through The Heart Vase
I produce all of my items in Montvale, NJ USA studio. I divide my time between the Robust lathe and finishing at the workbench. Once the form is complete from the lathe I will enhance the piece at the workbench.