I spent a very pleasant few hours today making a wooden bowl on a lathe. The class was organised by ‘The Amazings‘, an organisation that arranges for over-fifties and retired people to pass on their skills and interests to younger generations by running one-off classes or short courses. They do not need to necessarily have any teaching experience; just a passion or skill that they would like to share.
The tutor for the ‘Make a Wooden Bowl’ session was Paul, an accomplished wood turner. He was ably assisted by his 8-year-old grandson who has already got plenty of woodturning experience under his belt. Paul began by showing us the process of creating a bowl starting from a raw piece of wood up until the half way point. We then paired off and worked on our own creations, at first very hesitantly, waiting for Paul to tell us exactly what to to at each step. But soon we were working with increasing gusto and by the time we swapped around for the second person to get their hands on the tools we were getting properly stuck in, offering each other tips and and advice. When we reached a stop or something we were unsure of Paul (or in many cases his grandson!) was not far away to offer us tips on how to proceed. A demo of the second half of the process followed and then we finished off our own bowls.
Paul was a great tutor, giving just enough input to help us to get a good result but allow us to feel that the bowls were definitely our own creations. At the end of the session all 10 participants had successfully created a unique and beautiful bowl and were suitably chuffed with ourselves.
This was a really fun and satisfying few hours and I highly recommend having a go. I also think that the organisation itself is a really great idea and worthwhile venture. I shall definitely be keeping an eye on the other courses The Amazings have to offer and am likely to be attending another soon.
I have just booked on The Amazings ‘Making Altered Books’ course on 10th April. They have given me a 20% off voucher code to share if you are interested in booking a course yourself: http://curebit.com/x/fykBA