Rosie Brewer -Meet the Maker AUGUST August 01 2015
Tell us a bit about yourself. Can you recall how and why you became a maker?
I grew up surrounded by the smell of fresh sawdust and damp pine. When I was young my parents owned a sawmill and made sheds, beach huts and animal shelters. I spent a lot of my childhood climbing on piles of logs, drilling holes, hammering nails and attempting to make bird boxes. Years later I went to university to study 3D Design and rediscovered my enjoyment of working in wood. I graduated from Camberwell College of Arts in 2012 and set up a little workshop with some tools I had inherited, bought or was given.
What are your main inspirations and influences for the work?
I guess the main inspiration is the wood itself, the fact that no two pieces are the same. I like my work to have an un-fussy, simple aesthetic, with clean lines and familiar shapes. I see myself as acting as a facilitator in allowing the wood to show off its natural beauty. I love to allow the grain of the wood to dictate the shapes of the work I create. I am also inspired by other wood-workers, David Nash and Ariele Alasko are two personal favourites.
What is the process?
I have a few templates of different size boards which I lay on the wood, once I find an aesthetically pleasing section for the template, I draw around it onto the piece of wood. Then using a bandsaw I cut around the shape and sand it all down afterwards. The boards are then smothered in several coats of food-safe mineral oil which not only brings out the grain but prevents moisture absorbance and improves the woods resistance to grease and stains.
What do you enjoy most about being a maker?
Being a maker is such a rewarding way to earn a living. Seeing a piece develop from the initial log or rough-sawn plank of wood, to the final oiling, packaging and in a shop knowing it will be finally used and enjoyed in someone’s home. I enjoy the fact that no two days are the same and I can have flexible working hours.
I love the smell of wood and how the different patterns and textures never stop surprising me. There is unlimited potential for exploration and this means it never gets boring.