Wood Turning by Jeff Matter
I have lived in FL since 1979 and have worked with wood almost all of my life. As a child, I would make things and tinker in my father’s workshop. This is where my passion for woodworking began. I graduated from Winter Park High School, FL in 1980. After high school, I started working carpentry construction and soon started my own business of contract framing. After 15 years of working in the Florida sun, I decided to start working indoors.
I began doing custom interior trim, cabinets, furniture, and casework. I discovered wood turning in the spring of 2005 when a particular job required some custom turnings. A small, cheap lathe was bought for the job. After turning my first piece, I was hooked! Turning soon became an obsession. I started turning any piece of wood I could get my hands on. Downed trees, befriending tree workers, and even going to the dump! After finding out how laborious it was to cut down and prep wood, or how expensive it was to buy it, I soon became intrigued with the art of segmented turnings. Here I can use small pieces (which I had plenty of). The combinations of exotic and domestic woods, along with endless possibility of patterns and designs, can create quite a stunning piece. The pieces of wood are cut at precise angles and lengths to produce the basic shapes. Then they are glued together, and mounted on the lathe for turning. Many pieces are done in sections and stacked on a previously turned section. A segmented piece can take anywhere from a couple days to several months to complete. I love to use colorful and contrasting woods in my turnings. The fact I can make any shape or size piece that I want, helps me to combine the shapes and different woods in a way that they compliment each other.
I hope you enjoy my pieces as much as I did creating them.