Artistic Freedom and Rocking Chairs

I put my heart & soul into everything I build. When I build a piece on commission, my attention to detail can be described as "obsessive". Not only do I have my customer in mind through the entire process, I have my customer's grandchildren in mind because what I build will be passed down through generations. Thus, I chronically underestimate the amount of time I'll spend on a project. Once I get into it, it becomes my obsession until it's perfect. I wake up in the middle of the night because I’ve literally dreamed up some detail I want to tweak or new method I want to try. When I’m given artistic freedom I go above and beyond. The pressure is on me to make something that doesn’t simply satisfy the customer, it becomes a centerpiece of their home. I want them to tell stories to their grandchildren of where that chair came from because it is so uniquely beautiful and perfect.

With that in mind, here’s the story of a rocking chair. The task was to build a rocking chair, but I was given artistic freedom. I specialize (by choice!) in using locally available wood and wood I harvest myself. So I immediately thought to build primarily with diamond willow. I’ve previously built a couple chairs from diamond willow, incorporating a shaker tape weave for the seat. Adapting those designs into a chair that rocks would be incredibly challenging and rewarding. The rest of the story is captured in photos.