LaymarCrafts Woodturning Books


500 Wood Bowls is one of a series of Books covering different Art Forms in not only Wood but Ceramics and Glass etc.

This volume was Juried by Ray Leir and Jan Peters of the del Mano Gallery and Kevin Wallace a Writer in the field of Contemporary Craft and Art.

The Book is a collection of 500 Pictures of Wooden Bowls, although according to the Oxford English Dictionary the definition of a "Bowl" is "a round container open at the top" not all the items within the pages of this book satisfy, in my opinion, this description.

Sub-Titled "Bold and Original Designs Blending Tradition and Innovation" this is a book to inspire and perplex, all to often I found myself asking "how do they do that", as well as generating ideas for my own development in woodturning.

As previously stated above not all the items shown can be truly classified as Bowls and it is interesting to select those that do not come under the heading of, "a round container open at the top", and go to the Turners Web Site in question [where available] and see what heading it comes under there, I found "Bowls" in the book described on the respective web site as, Decorative Sculpture, Art Form, Lidded Box and Vessel to highlight but a few.

In fact some pieces are even described as such, for instance John Ecuyer's "Oceanic Annointing [or should that be Anointing?] Vessel, Terry Martin's "Jarrah Vessel" to name but two.

Their are also Bowls of similar Style/Form and as you flip through the Book you will see a Bowl that looks familiar and sure enough if you go back you will see a Similar almost Identical item by the same Turner, if the Book was meant to show us 500 Different Bowls then it fails in that area due to this, almost, duplication.

I cannot imagine for one minute that the collaborators for this Book could not have found 500 individual and unique designs without the need for repetitive pieces or "Non-Bowls" perhaps it needed a Woodturner on the Jury.

In spite of this, this Book is good value for money and recommended, and perhaps the best book on the singular subject available, let us hope their are more "Woodturned" themes to come.

500 Wood Bowls
Published by Lark Books.
  ISBN 1-57990-483-1

500 Bowls, when I first stated out in Woodturning I was recommended a Book on Ceramics and Pottery as an ideal source of Inspiration for Shape and Form, I obtained this book from my local Library and found it to be most useful.

When I saw that in this series their was also a Book dedicated to 500 Ceramic Bowls I took the opportunity to obtain it firstly on the chance it would give me more inspiration and also to compare the two Art Forms of Woodturning and Ceramics.

The Bowls featured in the Book were selected by John Britt himself a Potter or is that a Ceramic Artist.

Again this Book was Sub-Tilted, "Contemporary Explorations of a Timeless Design" but I'm not sure that this is a relevant statement or just fancy words? 

The format is the same as for the book above with some of the criticism relevant here also, although most are what I would term as being "True Bowls" however we still have the Signature Pieces of  particular Artist's appearing two or three times in various guises.

Whilst many of the pieces are unrepeatable as a purely Turned Item, there is scope for imaginative Woodturners and Wood Carvers if you look beyond the  Clay base material.

However Woodturners should get some great ideas on Shape and Form with some interesting Textures for those of us that are into Enhancing our Woodturning whether by Carving, Burning or Brushing.

If Colouring is your preferred method of Enhancement then again their are many examples that I feel sure could be adapted and applied to Wood whether it be a Bowl, a Vessel or a Vase.

I found this Book useful and have earmarked something like 42 Designs that I wish to pursue in Wood whether it be for the Shape, Form, Decoration, or Texture of the piece that I want to incorporate into my Own Design. 

500 Bowls
Published by Lark Books
   ISBN 1-57990-362-2

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Last update 16 July 2007
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