Don’t Cut Corners

Woodturners cut corners. You might say that is axiomatic for the profession. The geometry of the turning blank dictates that the corner sticks out farthest from the axis of the turning. And, therefore, unless you are doing off center work or are using an ornamental lathe, the corners get cut first thing.

What would happen if turners gave heed to the adage to not cut corners? Then you would get a square bowl and a square lid.

Square Bowl and Lid

Square Bowl and Lid

When I turned this bowl and lid some years ago, I didn’t do it with any feelings of virtue or smugness about leaving corners. I was just wondering what would happen if I did so.

A few people have looked at it at various shows. I couldn’t tell that it ever caused anyone to have a second look. So it has spent most of its life being ignored. It has been packed away, waiting its time.

This bowl and lid has surfaced again because someone just bought it. “I have always admired that bowl…” or something similar was the comment the buyer gave. And all along I thought I was its only admirer. I have occasionally pulled this bowl out of its box to look at it again.

Well, I don’t know how I feel about selling it. I am sending away a part of myself. I guess that is what art is about.

Ellis Hein, author of The Woodturner’s Project Book

About Ellis Hein

I am a woodturner and the author of The Woodturner's Project Book. I have a life-long interest in the gospel preached by George Fox and the early Quakers. You can see some of my material on that subject at
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