Temple Blackwood ~ Bio
I began my woodturning career as a teenager in my native Eastern Shore of Maryland. Steadily since 1973, I have enjoyed a full calendar of turning multiples, replicating architectural and furniture designs in large and small sizes, matching machine parts, pursuing my own artistic vision, and teaching others the pleasure of “cutting wood the way it likes to be cut” to achieve a pleasing shape.
I spent 38 years as an educator–teacher, administrator, and board member–in private independent schools. During that time, I shared my skills and enthusiasm for woodturning by teaching many middle and high school students, faculty members, and local students in my own shop and at Maryland Hall for the Arts in Annapolis.
Similarly, as an early member of the Association of American Woodturners and a charter member of the Chesapeake Woodturners (founding treasurer and webmaster) and as one who prefers to turn multiples, spindles, and to use the magic skew chisel above all other tools, I benefited from being asked to demonstrate and teach other turners. Teaching and attending club workshops, I continue to learn and grow from the others who so generously share their skills, discoveries, and artistic passions.
When I retired from secondary education, I moved to Maine where I have long-standing family connections that for me had begun in 1969. At my shop/gallery in Castine, I teach and turn full-time offering individual and small-group classes and shop time to new and established turners. I have demonstrated traditional woodturning for the public at the Castine’s Wilson Museum, and I continue to supply turned items and tools to wooden boat restorers, on-land architectural restorations, and to students at Maine Maritime Academy where I also taught writing and communications as a part-time adjunct.
The blend of my passion for turning and my enjoyment in teaching enhances my commitment to our craft and art. My enthusiasm for woodturning allows me to learn from each student I teach, and I enjoy participating as a member of both the Maine Woodturners and the Eastern Maine Woodturners, AAW clubs that while distant are the most local to my remote location. Having my sons seek me out as adults wanting to learn to turn and their subsequent development as turning artists brought a wonderful new dimension to our relationship and family. Now they, like many of my students, surpass me with their talents but continue to ask for my guidance, opinion, and occasional demonstration.
My volunteer service in the national community of woodturners is where I meet and join the impressive community of woodturner leaders who have been my friends over the years both in person and through the many publications of the American Association of Woodturners and its chapters. I contribute woodturning articles regularly to the Highland Woodturner on-line publication, and enjoy hosting traveling woodturners who come to visit mid-coast Maine. I regularly show my work in juried gallery shows while sharing with other turning artists new approaches to historically beautiful designs, unique artistic sculpted pieces as well as commercial production and restoration architectural turning. With them, I join in the pursuit of the perfect tool, the perfect design, and the perfect day in the shop turning wood and revealing the artistically pleasing shapes, form, textures, and colors within.