Held at Abundant Earth the Norther Bowl Gathering is an annual event where green woodworkers meet to share ideas, teach, learn and generally have a good time.
I arrived on Thursday evening and set up my polelathe and tent in anticipation of going on Yoav Elkayam’s end grain cup turning course. As you can see the site is absolutely stunning and I wish I had taken more photos.
Over Thursday and Friday, there was a range of courses.
- Bowl Carving with Nadine
- End grain cups with Yoav
- Beginners bowls with Steve Ridd
- Forging hooks with Matt Whittaker
- Turning Bowls with Amy Leake
- Shrinkpots with John Mullaney
- Beginners bowls with Adrian Loyd
All were well attended and, from what I saw, thoroughly enjoyed by those attending them. As mentioned, I was lucky enough to go on the end grain cup turning course with Yoav.
On Saturday and Sunday, we had the opportunity to go on short taster sessions. This included turning a communal bowl (several people working on one bowl), spoon carving and making fan birds. I tried my hand at making a fan bird – which is the second time I’ve done this. My first fan bird done a couple of years ago looked more like roadkill, this attempt is more like a chicken instead of a soaring songbird. Well, practice will improve them…
Evenings at Northern Bowl Gathering
Each evening dinner was supplied and was really good. The evenings were spent around an open fire and were tended by our very own firebug Alan. People brought instruments to play, and some brave souls also sang acapella. Finally, we were all singing and dancing the more lubricated we became – it was a wonderful experience and one I hope to repeat very soon.
On the last day, everyone chipped in to help tidy the site. The kindness of all the attendees and the camaraderie was lovely to be part of. For example, my tent and bedding were at the bottom of a steep hill, I was going to bring it all up to the first part of the hill and then dump the tent and take the bed etc to my car. When I returned to the gate at the top of the hill there was my tent – someone, and I wish I knew who so I could thank them, had brought it the remainder of the way. The green woodworking community is such a nice group of people and one that I am proud to be part of.