Well we’ve been here in Denver, CO for three weeks now and I’m already missing my workshop and woodworking. We were blessed with a quick sale of our Minnesota home (less than 24 hours…YOWZA!) and we’ll be headed back up north in a couple weeks to pack up and oversee the loading of the moving truck. A big part of the move will be packing up the shop. All of the things that have taken me a year to reorganize after our move from New Mexico…I’ll get to do it all over again. It's not all bad though. Basically, setting up shop is the grown man's equivalent of a little girl redecorating her doll house. Of course we need to actually find a shop…uh, house first! Until then most of my tools and the collection of wood will sit in storage.
(No cracks about the doll house comment from any of you overly P.C. folks. It's a documented fact that 92.7% of doll house owners are little girls, that 88.4% of them enjoy redecorating, and that 82.8% of grown men do in fact giggle like little girls when organizing their tools. There's no arguing with documented, scientific data.)
Over these past few weeks I’ve been meeting my need for a woodworking fix by scouring the web for blogs, articles, photos and videos so that I can live vicariously through the efforts of the rest of the woodworking community. It’s inspiring, creates much less sawdust, but isn’t anywhere near as fun. I do have a few regular spots I like to frequent though, and I thought I’d share those here.
For video content you can’t go wrong with Marc Spagnuolo at www.thewoodwhisperer.com . Marc does a great job demonstrating woodworking techniques and has a real gift for teaching through video. The site houses his entire history of video lessons and tips as well as providing online discussion forums, live streaming shop cams and a whole slew of links to other woodworking resources. I check in often and have even watched a few favorite videos several times over the past couple years.
I’m also a big fan of Steve Ramsey’s site, www.woodworkingformeremortals.com . Steve’s approach is that of your woodworking neighbor who just likes to get out into his shop every weekend and build cool projects. He injects a lot of creativity and some goofy humor, kind of like one of those buddies you might hang out with on a Saturday afternoon in your garage. I really appreciate Steve’s attitude toward learning new things and trying them out in an open forum so that we can all learn and be inspired. Our five-year old is also a big fan and will often ask to “watch a Steve video.” Watching his videos over the past year has actually inspired me to take a crack at producing some of my own video content…once I have a shop, that is.
Finally, another great site to peruse videos by woodworkers from all over the world is www.lumberjocks.com . They provide an all encompassing repository for all kinds of woodworking content, from project pictures, blogs and forums to videos and links to various sites and podcasts. It’s a great place to poke around for inspiration, or to conduct a search on a specific woodworking topic.
These are the three I check in on regularly, though there are dozens of other sites out there with great content like Tommy Mac’s, Matt’s Basement Workshop and Furnitology.
While I haven’t been very active online these past few weeks, hence the long time since my last post, I do like to participate in several online woodworking forums. I really like the forums over on Marc’s site, on Tommy MacDonald’s site and at Lumberjocks. I’m also, usually, a regular over at www.woodworkingtalk.com . A couple other favorites are overseas sites. www.woodworkforums.com is an Australian site that I really enjoy (they even have a forum dedicated to box making), and I’ve just recently started frequenting www.ukworkshop.co.uk , a forum across the pond for our friends in the UK. It’s pretty interesting to see what’s happening with the craft in other parts of the world. Plus if I’m up at 2:00 in the morning writing, say a blog entry, I can always pop over to one of those sites and find someone else up and posting on the other side of the world.
Speaking of 2:00 in the morning…I’d better hit the sack. As much as I’d like to cut into some wood, sawing logs at work tomorrow would be highly frowned upon!