INSPIRATION: ASHLEY HARWOOD

Winter share artist, Ashley Harwood, is a rarity in her medium. Woodturning is a male dominated field, but Ashley is trying to change that. She is spreading the word and teaching woodturning left and right.  In addition to creating her 32 pieces for CSA, she sells her work at the Charleston Farmers Market, teaches classes at her studio in West Ashley, and travels the country teaching classes and workshops at woodturning symposiums.  Read on to learn what inspires this prolific artist.
I included an image of myself with the Angel Oak because I find it inspirational to be able to work in a medium that is living and organic. Long after a tree has been cut down, the wood still moves. I enjoy working with a medium where I can use salvaged materials that come from my local area.
Lino Tagliopetra
Dante Marioni

I take a lot of inspiration from my background in glassblowing. It informs many of the shapes that I use as well as some of the decorative accents. Often, I will use wood to mimic the additive process of glassblowing and create the illusion that a decorative bead or rim was added to a bowl, for example. Some of the glassblowers whose designs I admire are Dante Marioni and Lino Tagliopietra. There is an elegance, a flow, and a simplicity to their forms.

Alain Mailland (left and center), Jean Francois Escoulen (right)

Two French woodturners I find inspiring are Alain Mailland and Jean Francois Escoulen.  They specializes in off-axis turning. Alain Mailland makes pieces that look like they must be some other medium besides wood - as if he can draw with the wood.

I take inspiration from my students on a regular basis. Part of what drives me is to share the woodturning experience with others and to bring more women into the field. I meet a lot of people who have no idea what woodturning or a lathe is, and I would like to see that change. I enjoy making things that are both artistic and functional. It is nice to think that someone can take something made from a local natural resource and bring it into their homes and their daily lives.

 

Ashley Harwood is one of the Winter Season artists.
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