About me

When I meet other woodturners for the first time they sometimes ask me what I make. No matter how many times it happens, it always confounds me. I want to say that I'll make 'anything you want, as long as its round', after the style of Henry Ford's 'any colour you like, so long as its black', but the question makes me feel inadequate because I haven't got that 'single item' speciality that seems to be expected of me.

Making a living from turning is not easy, turners have to be versatile and respond to market forces.  As well as actually turning I used to spend much of my time teaching woodturning skills and demonstrating to clubs and other interested groups. I have travelled the length and breadth of Britain to give demonstrations, but have now given this up as I got older and less inclined to travel long distances on motorways at night.

Several years ago I was recruited by ‘The Woodworker’ magazine to write a series of articles on various aspects of woodturning, design and related matters, and soon after that I also started writing for ‘Woodturning’ magazine. I enjoy this writing which gives me the opportunity to promote my own techniques and continue teaching via the written word rather than in person.

I  no longer sell my work at craft fairs, as I found these an increasingly uncertain market. Most of my work is now bought directly from me via this website, and I still enjoy making special pieces for commissions. Roof finials, table legs and newel posts are becoming something of a speciality, although I am also happy to accept commissions for bowls and the other pieces you will find on this site. It suits me well that, by-and-large, I’m free to follow my own interests as well as making whatever my customers may want.

When I first started selling my work I used to sign it with a hand drawn version of this tree logo, but now I simply use my name and the date, and find this much more straightforward. Wherever you see the logo on this site, clicking it will take you back to the top of the page unless some other action is specified.

Bob Chapman
Bingley, West Yorkshire
August 2016