Gary Bills

Beneath The Bark

Media: Wood

179 Hawks Pt. Dr. Zirconia, NC 28790

"I look long and hard to find an extraordinary piece of wood with fantastic figure to create your piece of art."

Beneath The Bark When I was in high school in 1962, I turned two bowls on a wood lathe in shop class. Since then I have always wanted to turn more bowls. In 2003 I bought a Powermatic 3520a wood lathe and a 17-inch Grizzly band saw and started turning wood. I spent many hours studying and learning the art of woodturning. My first pieces were small bowls. Then I worked on larger bowls and hollow forms (vases). My experience collecting antique glassware has helped me develop pleasing shapes and forms. I enjoy using gentle curves and traditional shapes in my work so that the fantastic figure in the grain of the wood is featured. I study the piece of wood thoroughly before deciding how to mount it on my lathe to obtain the best grain in the right places on the art form. I am intrigued with the beauty of the wood grain “Beneath The Bark”. As I gained experience, I found I could often determine the structure of the grain by studying the shape and texture of the log. I like highly figured wood grain in my works of art. I also often include bark in the surface of the piece to add to its uniqueness. Highly figured grain can be found in such places as burls, crotches, and places a tree has been wounded and healed over. I also look for diseased or insect infected trees as they can have dramatic coloring and voids that add character. Each piece is a unique, one-of-a-kind, hand crafted art form. Most of the wood I use comes from trees that are blown down in storms. I learned to turn wood by reading books, watching videos, live demonstrations, and one on one instruction by some of the world’s best woodturners. I have also learned a lot by attending several woodturning symposiums and spending thousands of hours turning wood. I am a member of the Southern Highland Craft Guild, Hendersonville Woodcrafters, the Greenville Woodworkers Guild, the AAW (American Association of Woodturners), and the Carolina Mountain Woodturners. I am currently a board member of the Carolina Mountain Woodturners. 828-694-1484 Gary Bills

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