• Roger Waterhouse


This is an exercise in how I let the wood dictate the form.

Next weekend is the Peak District Artisans' Winter Arts Fair at the Enterprise Centre in Derby - see the PDA website for more details. I've got a good display prepared, but wanted a centrepiece to set it off. I've had a large slice of spalted beech set aside for couple of years and decided this was the time to use it. The snag was convoluted bark on the outside - so I couldn't get both large diameter and depth across the whole piece.

I cut out a large circle - just over 57cm (22 1/2inches) with some striking colouration on the face.

This was the problem , on the underside - a bark intrusion which left only about 3 cm of depth quite close to the centre..

As I started to true-up the piece, the depth of the intrusion became apparent.

So I kept taking the depth of the rim down until the bark was almost eliminated.

And this eventually was what I was left with, as the outside profile.

You can see how thin it is in this shot.

The plus side was that the broad rim enabled me to retain much of the marking on the original face.

The challenge now was how to expose the markings in the depth of the bowl to best advantage - without cutting through!

The spalting began to emerge very nicely within the bowl.

I then concentrated on the inner rim, raising it slightly and undercutting to give it shadow.

This was the finished result, with which I was well pleased.

I hope the visitors to the Winter Arts Fair in Derby next weekend share my enthusiasm!

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