As well as this blog, I also have a website and Instagram page with lots more images of my work as well as a few more stories.
If you like woodcarvings, you might want to have a look.

Friday 21 June 2013

Visiting Patrick Small, a local woodcarver, ceramicist and jewellery maker

It was great to catch up recently with Patrick, who works from a studio at his home in Bristol. It's one of those studios that has a very cosy feel to it, filled with books, clippings from magazines and objects that he has collected along the way.

It's always interesting to see what he is making at the moment as Patrick's work covers carving, jewellery and ceramics. Recently, he has moved back to carving after making a lot of jewellery. One line of things being made at the moment are these ritual wands:

We ended up having a couple of pints at the local pub and having one of those chats that woodcarvers can only have with other woodcarvers:

"Ashley Iles are my favourite make of gouges. I love 'em, but I know that you don't get on with them"
" No, I find the steel too soft and I can never get a decent edge on them, although I love my new Ray Gonzalez hooked skew"
etc., etc.

Pity the other patrons sitting within earshot!

We also discussed things like the need to not undersell yourself as a maker. When chatting to the Icelandic carver Jón Adólf Steinólfsson earlier this year, he also noted this. 

Jón Adólf said that when it comes to pricing his work, he really values the opinion of his partner Karin as she can see it's value with a more objective eye than he can, as the maker of the work. Both Patrick and I noted that there is definitely a tendency amongst many makers that we know in Britain to play down their hard-won skills and to underprice their own products, to the detriment of marketing their work. Perhaps Jón Adólf's attitude towards marketing yourself is also influenced by his contact with the American craft makers' world, which seems to be much more direct in some ways than the frequently more reserved British approach. Making an effort not to be too modest and not to undersell yourself seems like a good approach to take to me.

Of course, however, one needs to be able to back up any claims that one makes!

If you would like to see more of Patrick's beautiful work, you can visit his website at:

You can also see more about meeting Jón Adólf Steinólfsson at:

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