Mike Marek – Wood Artist

When a man works with his hands he is a laborer. When he works with his hands and his mind he is a craftsman. But when he works with his hands, his mind and his heart he is an artist. A wood artist envisions the beauty in that block of wood, loves the process of creation and applies his tools to realize the vision.

I have been an avid wood worker for over 30 years. I started turning wood in an 8th grade wood shop class and immediately fell in love with the process. My dad bought me my first lathe – a basic Craftsman lathe that I had for over 20 years.

When I returned to woodworking in 2005 after over a decade hiatus I returned to flat work creating furniture for our house and special items for our children and now grandchildren. Even though I enjoy all areas of this wonderful craft, I have returned to my first love – turning individual items on a lathe. I am exploring  just about every aspect of wood turning that I can as time permits. Open vessels, closed forms, bowls, and just about anything else that requires a lathe.

Like everything in nature, each piece of wood has its own character. Each piece is much like every other piece of that species, but each also has its own personality and appeal. I find few things in life more enjoyable and satisfying than seeing that personality emerge from a large wet lump of wood and doing my best to bring out its beauty and character.

RosewoodOpenVessel-1To me, the process of exposing that inner beauty is in many ways, the most enjoyable part. Listening to the hiss of a sharp gouge as it peels away wet shavings and watching them fly in a long arc to finally land in a huge pile is a singular experience. Sometimes it’s difficult to remember that the original purpose was to make something useful and beautiful and not to just make shavings! However, in the end, we need to remember that the tree spent a lifetime developing its unique qualities and we should try to preserve rather than destroy the fruits of that effort.

AssembledStoolPostWeave640x480.jpgNearly all of the wood I use comes from trees that have been felled due to disease, storms or development and destined to be ground into mulch or hauled to a landfill. Urban timber rescue and woodturning is one of the few ways that we, as individuals, can preserve a little of a tree that once stood tall and proud and it’s wonderful to be part of that community.

I am a member of the American Association of Woodturners (AAW), the Maryland Federation of Art, the Chesapeake Woodturners of Annapolis, MD and Tri-County Woodturners of Lutz Fl.

So thank you for visiting our site. We hope you find something here that will inspire you to write a friend, write a loved one or write a novel. A gift for a special friend or occasion, commission us to create a memory from a treasure from the past, that tree in your grandparents yard that the storm blew down or a piece of mom’s furniture that is no longer functional but hold a special place in family history. Enjoy and thanks for visiting – please come back often.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.