Turning Heads – City View

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Tyler Jamison’s passion brings out the beauty of wood

Tyler Jamison carves and rotates wood to emphasize texture and emphasize grain. But he doesn’t just work with old wood he finds. Each piece has been carefully selected and each is unique due to the spalting that occurs when the wood becomes infected with a fungus. It creates a beautiful dark swirl pattern in the wood, making Tyler’s finished vessels look like they were painted by the hand of God.

He also changes the burls, which are growths found on the sides of trees. Within these knots, the wood grain is twisted in various combinations. They create a colorful mosaic in his finished products.

“You can never make the same piece twice,” says Tyler. “I’m very interested in what’s happening in the forest. I feel a close connection with it. It’s very comforting and makes me very happy to see the logs turn into finished forms.”

nathan sparks

Don’t be fooled by the beauty of the wood he uses. Wood turning is a complex and often dangerous art form. In fact, the more beautiful the piece of wood, the more difficult and dangerous it will be to turn it. While fungi create beautiful marks, they can also leave voids throughout the wood, causing deterioration.

Tyler often works through holes less than an inch wide, and may be using specially shaped gouges and chisels to carve deep inside the container while spinning the container at high speed on a lathe. . He can’t see the tool cutting, so he can only feel it. This can literally cause the piece to explode in front of his eyes. But he says it’s worth the risk to create something you love.

It’s clear that this sculptor is incredibly talented, but he’s the first to share credit for his work right away. “When moisture is released from the wood, it warps and shrinks. It’s a little unstable, and I love that,” he says. “But it’s all Mother Nature’s work. You just create a simple shape and the tree does the rest.”

Simple might be an understatement. Each piece can take him up to two weeks to create. When asked what he would do about something that didn’t meet his expectations, his fiancée Tara Watson, who handles his marketing and often helps with his designs, says: I really hate burn piles. ” Every artist has their own standards, and Tyler is no exception. If you are not satisfied with the work, it will not leave the store.

Preferring to work with local hardwoods, Tyler seems to have a knack for finding exotic pieces in unexpected places. One of his favorite pieces is the yew root ball, but these parts are difficult to obtain. Tyler rarely misses an opportunity. When he was working on a landscaping project, he spotted a yew shrub that was slated to be removed and offered to dig it up. The root ball became one of his most valuable pieces in his collection.

Originally from Pennsylvania, Tyler has lived in the Knoxville area for nine years. He has always been drawn to woodworking, but a show at the Emporium three years ago set his creative direction. “It was the Tennessee Craft Guild Show and Gordon Fowler was turning wood on a lathe,” he recalls. “I was fascinated by it. I went home and bought a lathe.” His love for carving hollow shapes into simple shapes and expressing wood grain grew.

Tyler sells his art on Etsy and occasionally at local festivals. He leans toward creating artistic pieces rather than pieces designed for function, knowing that each piece is as different as the one before. He says, “I make it because I want people to enjoy looking at it and having fun holding it.”

go to www.tpjwoodsculpting.etsy.com To see Tyler’s work. If you would like to commission a custom piece from Tyler, please contact him at tpjwoodsculpting@gmail.com.



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