The making of a shade, which leads to Dylan Thomas

“I am a woodturner/inventor/teacher with 35 years at the lathe,” says Soren Berger. “I hope you enjoy a small glimpse into making one of my shades.”

Extraordinary to watch him make a beautiful, delicate lampshade out of one lump of wood. Like a moth coming out of its chrysalis. If I had a workshop, a kick-arse lathe is one of the first things I’d get (plus some lessons).

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And speaking of craftsmanship, Dylan Thomas wrote this, which, well, make your own mind up but I think we’ll agree…


In My Craft or Sullen Art

In my craft or sullen art
Exercised in the still night
When only the moon rages
And the lovers lie abed
With all their griefs in their arms,
I labour by singing light
Not for ambition or bread
Or the strut and trade of charms
On the ivory stages
But for the common wages
Of their most secret heart.

Not for the proud man apart
From the raging moon I write
On these spindrift pages
Nor for the towering dead
With their nightingales and psalms
But for the lovers, their arms
Round the griefs of the ages,
Who pay no praise or wages
Nor heed my craft or art.

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