Stone carving sets me on fire.
It has an irreversible, enduring permanence that demands constant critical concentration. And yet it is possible to talk, listen to music, intermittently dance, eat, drink, think about other things and still carve. It’s a great teacher, repaying good preparation, punishing haste and often unexpected. It can be an insanely intimidating process and yet it sets me free.
I have been stone carving since the first course I took at the City Lit with Geoff Aldred in September 2010. Each piece I have made has tested me, always pushing the boundaries of what I can achieve, the drawing, the tools, the stone, the patience of my teachers. I like being on the edge, where some part of me has to be absolutely still. It’s addictive.
The people who have taught and teach me still, some briefly some at length; Geoff Aldred, Chris Elesy, Tom Perkins, Eric Marland, Pip Hall, Graeme Mitcheson and my fellow carvers Chipp Jensen, Tom Knutson and Tom Sargeant.
Stone is never in a hurry. It waits patiently for its moment, telling you when to start, which way to go, and when you have arrived. Once the journey has begun there’s no going back, only the challenge of the way forward.